February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day

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Saint Valentine's Day or Valentine's Day is on February 14. It is the traditional day on which lovers express their love for each other; sending Valentine's cards, candy, or donations to charities, often anonymously. It is very common to present flowers on Valentine's Day. The holiday is named after two men, both Christian martyrs named Valentine. The day became associated with romantic love in the High Middle Ages, when the tradition of courtly love flourished.
The day is most closely associated with the mutual exchange of love notes in the form of "valentines". Modern Valentine symbols include the heart-shaped outline and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the 19th century, handwritten notes have largely given way to mass-produced greeting cards. The Greeting Card Association estimates that approximately one billion valentines are sent each year worldwide, making the day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year behind Christmas. The association estimates that women purchase approximately 85 percent of all valentines. In the United States, the marketing of Valentine's Day has tagged it as a "Hallmark holiday". A recent trend has been to refer to February 14 as Singles Awareness Day.

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