A European Valentine's Day

A European Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is just a few days away! If you’re looking for a more unique way of expressing your love, take a look at how the Europeans celebrate this special day…

Denmark: In Denmark, Valentine’s Day is celebrated as Fjortende Februar. On this day, lovers send snowdrops, white flowers, to each other. They are also accustomed to sending love poems called gaekkebrev, or a joking card, to their sweethearts. In this tradition, the sender writes an amusing poem to his/her love and signs the letter with dots instead of a name. If the one receiving the poem can guess who has sent it, then this person will get a chocolate egg on Easter day. Jeg Elsker Dig means I Love You in Danish.

England: In Victorian England, lovers, family members, and friends, expressed their affections with elaborate paper valentines which often included a poem penned by the sender.

Germany: For Germans, Valentine’s Day is all about flowers. A man will often send his sweetie a bouquet of his lover’s favorite flowers to show that he is paying attention to her specific affections. Ich liebe dich means I Love You in German.

Romania: The Romanian version of Valentine’s Day, known as the Dragobete festival, takes place on February 24th. On this day, sweethearts pick flowers (snowdrops) for each other. Some may even keep with the tradition of stepping over their partner’s feet, which is said to give the stepper the upper hand in the relationship. Te ubesc means I Love You in Romanian. 

Scotland: For the Scots, Valentine’s Day is celebrated with a festival for young singles. An equal amount of young single men and single women writes his/her name (or a made up name) on a piece of paper, then it is rolled up. The names are placed in two hats, one for the men and one for the women. Each single then draws a name out of the opposite gender’s hat, which, in turn, becomes their valentine. Although some men and women may end up with two valentines, the men are suppose to stick with the valentine who has chosen him. Gifts are then given to the young ladies, who wear the name of their valentine over their heart or on their sleeve. Ta gra agam ort means I Love You in Gaelic.

Wales: In Wales, Dydd Santes Dwynwen is celebrated on January 25th. On this version of Valentine’s day, Welsh men carve elaborate wooden spoons as tokens of affection. ‘Rwy’n dy garu means I Love You in Welsh.

Happy Valentine’s Day Everyone!

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