Each year on February 14th, lovers of all types including friends, family members, spouses, and significant others exchange greeting cards, candied hearts, and flower bouquets to express their love and affection for one another. While Valentine’s Day is not a public or official holiday in any country, it is celebrated around the world. There are many legends detailing the story of Saint Valentine and they all have one thing in common: they all speak to his sympathetic, heroic and romantic characteristics.
Roman legends believe Saint Valentine to have been a priest in the Catholic Church, who was martyred for his sanctioning of secret marriages during the third century. Emperor Claudius II had outlawed marriage for young men because he believed single men made better soldiers than those with wives and children. Saint Valentine believed differently and continued to perform marriages for young loved ones in secret resulting in dire penalties.
Other legends claim that Saint Valentine was imprisoned for helping Christians escape the harsh Roman rule. Prior to his death, he sent one last love letter while in prison signed “From your Valentine,” an expression still widely used today.
While the extent of truth behind these legends may vary, so do the ways in which we greet each other. Impress your Valentine this year by learning how to say “Happy Valentine’s Day” in different languages.
- Arabic – (if speaking to a male) Eid hob sa’eed, habibi; (if speaking to a female) Eid hob sa’eed,habibti, عيد حب سعيد
- Dutch – Fijne Valentijnsdag
- French – Joyeuse Saint Valentin
- German – Alles Liebe zum Valentinstag
- Indonesian – Selamat Hari Kasih Sayang
- Italian – Buon San Valentino
- Japanese – Shiawasena Barentaindee,
- Portuguese – Feliz Dia dos Namorados
- Mandarin – Qingren jie kuaile,
- Spanish – Feliz día de San Valentín
- Swedish – Glad Alla hjärtans dag
- Thai – Sook San Wan Valentine,
How do you say it in your language?