Lost Love

How Valentine’s Day’s meaning is straying away from it’s Roman roots.

Photo by Brynna Namanny

When you look at Valentine’s Day around the world in 2000 and 2022 there are definitely some differences. Sure 22 years have passed but the original intent of the holiday has stayed the same since Roman times; to celebrate the ones you love. People all around the world have morphed the meaning from caring about others, to measuring your love for others through materialistic gifts and grand gestures. The proof is in the pudding, spending numbers have grown from millions to billions in a matter of years.

According to History.com the origins of Valentine’s Day are a little hazy. It took place during the Roman Fertility Festival on the same date in the late fifth century. At least three martyred saints named Valentine or Valentinus were recognized by the Roman Catholic Church. Valentine was a Roman priest in the third century, according to legend and Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage for young, unattached men after deciding single men made better soldiers. Valentine continued to secretly perform marriages and He was executed after his defiance was discovered.

The history of this love-filled day goes back centuries and all because one man decided love was worth fighting for and inevitably getting beheaded over. In the beginning, he didn’t do it for himself, he simply thought it unfair that young people couldn’t get married when they loved someone.

According to an article posted in 2000 by CNNMoney it expects American consumers to spend an average of $77.43 on Valentine’s Day that year. Then we look at the numbers this year (2022) provided by the National Retail Foundation (NRF) and they expect consumers to spend an average of $164.76 on their loved ones this Valentine’s day. Over the span of 22 years, the spending average has grown $87.33. Total spending this year will reach $21.8B on gifts for partners, friends, pets and more.

“People just use it to get a date or have a good time.” Sophomore Alex Tiefel said. “They really just need to use it to have a connection with anyone.”

To learn more about Valentines day go to https://nrf.com/topics/holiday-and-seasonal-trends/valentines-day