Why We Give Flowers for Valentine's Day?
It’s one of the most popular occasions of the year for giving flowers as a gift, but the traditions surrounding flowers for Valentine’s Day have interesting historical backgrounds.
For instance, most people are unaware that Valentine’s Day 2019 is actually quite different from how it started more than a thousand years ago - during ancient Roman times. In the fifth century (400 to 500 AD), the Roman people celebrated a festival every year around mid-February as a celebration of the coming spring.
Obviously, this often included flowers as decorations and gifts, and the idea of new beginnings and fertility were also popular themes.
As part of the festival, young women and men were paired off by matchmakers and were often crowned with wreaths of flowers or given bouquets of flowers as gifts. And so it went until the end of the century when the Pope at the time decided the day would be replaced by one that honored a Catholic saint.
Many of the traditions remained - most notably giving flowers on Valentine’s Day - which is part of why sending flowers on Valentine’s Day.
It doesn’t even matter what variety, all types of flowers for Valentine’s Day are an appropriate statement when you consider how the tradition started.
It wasn’t until hundreds of years later in the 1400s that people started celebrating Valentine’s Day as a holiday for romance and lovers.
Although there have been many priests and notable figures named Valentine through the ages, most historians agree that the most common reason we think of Valentine’s Day as the day of love is due to St. Valentine - a priest and bishop from the third century who defied the emperor’s orders to marry couples in secret, allowing men to avoid being forced into the Roman army as was the custom for unwed men of the time. The priest was punished by death, but the story of his sacrifices for love lived on.
It is for this reason that many believe that red flowers so quickly became a Valentine’s Day favorite - they symbolized both the sacrifice of the priest, and the passion of the couples he helped.
For those looking for the truest expression of the holiday - red flowers on Valentine’s Day is an easy choice.
All history aside, giving flowers on Valentine’s Day (or any special occasion) has many meanings beyond simply offering a beautiful gift.
Various scientific studies have shown that receiving and giving flowers as a gift elevates people’s mood - they smile more, they stand closer to each other, and are more likely to engage in conversation… all of which are good qualities to have in a valentine.
Other studies in social behavior have shown that gifts of flowers have a calming effect, and often put people at ease, making them more open and honest.
If you’re hoping to express feelings on love on Valentine’s Day, giving flowers beforehand just might make a person more receptive to what you have to say. What’s even more interesting is that researchers have found that these reactions are not limited to women receiving flowers from men. Men also report increased feelings of happiness or relaxation when getting flowers as a gift.
So if you’re thinking of sending all types of flowers for Valentine’s Day, or giving roses for Valentine’s Day.
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