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Saint Valentine's Day - How It Is Celebrated in Different Countries?

Misbah is a Muslim woman who loves to share her knowledge about her religion and culture with the world.

St Valentine's Day has existed for seventeen centuries in a row. How do people with different cultures and religions in different countries of the world celebrate Valentine's Day?

The ancient Romans celebrated Love Day on February 14 — they offered prayers to the goddess of marriage and motherhood, Juno remembered the god of eroticism, Eros, and the god of entertainment, Pan. The girls searched for their men by writing a letter and throwing it into a deep urn. And the one who pulled him out of there, and became a husband. Even young people during the holiday beat each other with animal skins and in such a frantic dance-game, they were looking for their soul mate.

The ancient Greeks held massive lovemaking and lavish feasts in honor of the goddess of love, Aphrodite. During these orgies, there were also life partners. Valentine's Day began to be massively celebrated in Western Europe. The tradition of writing valentines, giving sweets, flowers, and singing serenades have firmly entered the minds of people. By the way, it was for this holiday that the capitalists made the production of postcards and caramel. Back in the 17th century, the court chronicler of the English court, Samuel Pepys, wrote that on Valentine's Day, young people needed to exchange gloves, rings, and sweets. Besides, on this day, any woman can approach a man she likes and invite him to become her husband. The important thing is that the man had no right to refuse the lady. And if his heart was already not free, then in that case he gave her a silk dress.

In Japan and Korea since the 1930s. There is a tradition on this day to present sweets to the other half. On Valentine's Day, only men receive gifts. Women give gifts a month later, White Day. Moreover, in Korea, there is a tradition to celebrate the so-called Black Day. It was invented by Korean singles who didn't receive Valentine's Day gifts so they go to stag parties, get drunk with grief, and eat black Jajang noodles.

In passionate France, on Valentine's Day they give each other jewelry, and in romantic Denmark they send each other dried white flowers. But in prim England, boys and girls are guessing. Ladies wake up before sunrise and look out the windows. The first person the young lady sees will become her husband. And in one of the counties, Derbyshire, girls from three to 12 times go around the church at midnight and repeat the spell. After that, according to legend, they will meet true love. On this day, all unmarried English women also throw notes with the names of the man of their dreams into the river. The paper that first floats up will be fatal as well — the name is written on it.

In Jamaica on this day, mass "weddings" are carried out. Celebrations are held on various beaches. In Brazil, St Valentine's Day is celebrated on June 12. On this day, lonely Brazilian women perform magical rituals, thereby attracting lonely men to themselves. In Israel, Love Day is celebrated at the end of summer. A girl may well offer her hand and heart to a man she likes.

The Germans associate love with madness, and Saint Valentine is naturally considered the patron saint of the mad. On this day, they decorate psychiatric hospitals with colorful ribbons and flowers; they serve special masses.

On Valentine's Day, Poles visit the Poznan metropolis where, according to an ancient legend, the relics of Saint Valentine are kept and an icon with the face of the saint is kept. The Poles believe in his miraculous power, so they consider it their duty to venerate him and ask the saint for family happiness.

By the way, St Valentine's Day is banned in Muslim Saudi Arabia. The Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and the Prevention of Sin has imposed exorbitant fines for non-compliance with their ruling. Stores are strictly forbidden to sell valentines, red roses, soft toys, and heart-shaped sweets because "pernicious Western traditions confuse the minds of the younger generation in Saudi Arabia, and such holidays cultivate sin."

Under the Soviet Union, the concept of a saint, much less saint Valentine — did not exist. In the countries of the post-Soviet space, Valentine's Day began to be celebrated already in the 20th century. Young people exchange valentines, sweets, toys, give flowers, arrange romantic dinners, and walks. In this regard we are not one step behind the West. Orthodox priests do not see anything wrong with lovers worshiping Saint Valentine. They are confident that saying "I love" and doing romantic things should be done every day. But the truly Orthodox Love Day is celebrated on July 8 in honor of the holy spouses Peter and Fevronia of Murom.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2021 Misbah Sheikh


Misbah Sheikh (author) from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on January 31, 2021:

Well said Manatita

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Agree with you


Misbah Sheikh (author) from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on January 31, 2021:

Thanks Aqsa Malik for appreciation,

Glad to see your comment


Misbah Sheikh (author) from — This Existence Is Only an Illusion on January 31, 2021:

Can't say anything about that Jodah, but yes it was believed. I would call these things nothing else than superstitious beliefs

Thank you for appreciation

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on January 31, 2021:

These Valentine traditions are very interesting, Misbah. One that has me a little concerned however is:

“ On this day, all unmarried English women also throw notes with the names of the man of their dreams into the river. The paper that first floats up will be fatal, as well, the name is written on it.”

Fatal means deadly, so whoever’s name is written on the paper will die!

Aqsa Malik from Pakistan on January 31, 2021:


manatita44 from london on January 31, 2021:

What an interesting piece! The victory is in 'feelings' though, not in rules or customs. Lovely article!

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