The season of love as its fondly called by many is finally here . Valentine’s day also known as lover’s day is just few days away. This is a day when lovers, friends or family show their affection for one another with gifts and kind messages.
As a popular event all over the world, the month of February rolls in with flashes of the colour red . It floods everywhere, from our television screens, to shops, restaurants, social media ,work places and even our schools are not spared.
Over the years, the widespread use of the colour red has become synonymous with valentines day, but why red? What is really the significance of colour red to Valentine’s day? Red flowers, Red dresses, red love notes, chocolates wrapped in red and even red teddy bears. Almost like an outbreak of a red pandemic that everyone catches.
The red theme for Valentine’s day has a lot to do with history and traditional beliefs from long ago. In the world of today, the colour red represents passion, love, romance, anger and danger. Apart from the romantic attributes of colour red, it is also used as warning signs to show danger, for instance on traffic signs or fire fighting equipment.
When we picture Valentine’s day, the first colour that comes to our mind is red . Now let’s picture where that ideology came from. There are many concepts as to why colour red symbolizes love and passion and few of them include:
The Ancient Greek and Roman myth
The goddess of love Aphrodite falling in love with a mortal man named Adonis. Eventually as Adonis was about to die, the goddess of love Aphrodite rushed towards him while accidentally stepping on the thorns of a white rose. Hence blood staining the white rose to turn completely red, making it unique and the first red rose to exist. In this concept red blood and red rose is symbolizing love.
Valentine’s day also dates back to the time of the ancient Romans, when there was a particular festival to celebrate family fertility called the Lupercalia festival. During this festival, blood from sacrificed animals were touched on the women to increase their fertility. This ritual was part of the roman tradition and was celebrated on every February 15th but was moved to February 14th in the 5th century by pope Gelasius I and renamed St. Valentine’s day. Scholars believe this explains the red colour of blood used during the sacrifice contributed to the popular connection of Valentine’s day and the colour red.
The Roman Priest
St Valentine was a Roman priest who believed in love and secretly wedded young Christian couples in the church. This was against the will of Emperor Claudias who felt unmarried soldiers fought better on the battlefield . He banned marriage among young people. Saint Valentine was executed on 14th February for refusing to denounce Christ and his christian faith. Thus the day is beloved to be celebrated to honor his memory.
The Human Anatomy
The red colour in connection to Valentine’s day is simply related to love and the colour of blood and the human heart. This is why some Countries around the world including India and China encourage their brides to wear the colour red on their wedding day. Red remains a colour that stirs up excitement and communicates a feeling of desire. The colour red represents the blood and beating heart in our bodies, symbolizing pure affection and true love.