Romance, love, and conversation candy hearts…that’s what Valentine’s Day is all about, right? Not exactly. Keep reading for ten things you never knew about Valentine’s Day:
There are a few theories about the origins of Valentine’s Day, but one popular one dates back as far as the Roman Empire. Claudius II believed single men made better soldiers and forbid men to marry during wartime. Bishop Valentine went against his wishes, secretly performing wedding ceremonies for soldiers. His thank you? Getting jailed and executed—but not before he wrote a love note to the jailor’s daughter… signing it, “From your Valentine.”
- Thinking of popping the question? February is the second most popular month (after December) to propose.
- And don’t be afraid to go against tradition. According to a study by the Robbins Brothers, 30% of women and 40% of men think it’s okay for women to pop the question. And two-thirds of men are open to wearing an engagement ring.
- Money can’t buy love, but it’s buying a whole lot of Valentine’s Day gifts this year. RetailMeNot reports that the average guy spends about $287 on a Valentine’s Day gift. Women spend an average of $164.
- Don’t stress out too much about the gift—a recent survey found that about half of the 750 couples surveyed said they didn’t approve of the gift they got from their partner, but accepted it as a token of love. Socks it is!
- The most disappointing gift? For men, it’s flowers. For women, a gym membership or exercise equipment. But you guys know better than that…right?
- The romantic dinner will set us back too, to the tune of $139.
- And we’re not forgetting our fluffier loved ones—20 percent of people plan to buy a Valentine’s Day gift for their pets this year. Heart-shaped kibble?
- What was the Middle Ages equivalent of posting “Happy Valentine’s Day!” on your Valentine’s Facebook wall? Back then, men and women wore the names of their sweethearts pinned to their sleeves—in fact, that’s where the expression “wearing your heart on your sleeve” comes from!
- What’s better than getting a sweet handmade Valentine’s Day card in the shape of a heart? In the 1920′s, it was a card shaped like a… tomato? Yep, back in the day, tomatoes were also known as “love apples.”