New Delhi | Jagran Lifestyle Desk: Every year, from February 7 to February 14, we celebrate the festival of love, Valentine's Week, to express our feelings to someone we love. The week begins with Rose and ends with Valentine's Day. This year, we will be celebrating Valentine's Day on Sunday.

The day may symbolise the celebration of love and affection in the present times, though its origins are dark and muddled. On Valentine's Day, here's all you need to know about its history, significance, and how it is celebrated in different societies across the world.

History and Significance

While the true origin of holiday remains vague, popular history suggests the day may have taken its name from a priest by the name Valentine, who was martyred about 270 CE by emperor Claudius II Gothicus. Others believe the day got its name from Valentine of Terni, a priest who was martyred during the persecution under Emperor Aurelian in 273 CE. This is why the day is also known as 'Saint Valentine's Day' and 'Feast of Saint Valentine'. 

The day began to symbolise the celebration of love only in the 14th century. In the 18th century England, it grew into an occasion when the couple of express their love by exchanging gifts, flowers, cards, or letters.  Despite persistent and detailed claims, it remains unknown whether the festival share links with pre-Roman pastoral annual festival of Lupercalia. 

Celebrations

The custom of sending gifts and cards to your partner on Valentine's Day began in England and gradually spread across the world. In most Latin American countries, the day is known as Dia de los Enamorados (day of lovers) or Dia del Amor y la Amistad (day of love and friendship). Valentine's Day is not a public holiday. Government offices, stores, school and other institutes remain open as usual. Public transport runs on their regular schedule. In India, Valentine's Day celebrations did not catch up until the last decade of the 20th century. Singaporeans are among the biggest spenders on Valentine's Day.

Posted By: Lakshay Raja