The history of Valentine’s Day dates back centuries, as early as 270AD. Across the globe on February 14th millions of people present their loved ones with gifts, notes and cards. The Christian Church and Rome originally associated the festival with Pagan rituals; in the early days Valentine’s Day involved whipping and nudity, which was thought to improve a woman’s fertility. It was in the 5thC that the festival was Christianised and the church, namely Pope Gelasius, declared February 14th Saint Valentine's Day.
In 1400AD a court was opened in Paris on Valentines Day dealing with affairs of the heart. The first Valentine’s note recorded is thought to have been written by Frenchman Charles, the Duke of Orleans whilst captured in the Tower of London in 1415. By the mid 18th C Valentine’s notes were popular, and by the beginning of the 19thC production of cards made of paper and lace had begun.
Today the focus is on gift giving, from your traditional chocolates and flowers to jewellery or more unusual unique gifts. At loveantiques.com we’ve complied a selection of unique gifts that may inspire you. An antique item is thoughtful, a keepsake for years to come and reminds one another of the love you share.
Antique Eternity Ring
Nothing reaffirms the love you feel for you partner more than an eternity ring, and this beautiful eternity ring is a precious reminder of just that. The ring was made during 1930 and is 18carot white gold, it features brilliant cut diamonds. The ring is being sold by Diamonds4you for £580.
Pearl and Diamond Drop Earrings
These earrings were made in 1920 and are delicate and dainty, pretty and elegant. Set in 14 carat gold, the pearls are 8mm in size. The drop earrings are a special addition to a lady’s jewellery collection, sold again by Daimonds4you for £450.
Diamond and Gold Cufflinks
These diamond and 9carot gold cufflinks for him are very distinguished, these vintage cufflinks with a double diamond from the 20th C are an interesting design that will smarten up any occasion, ideal for him to wear at a special event. The cufflinks are hallmarked and being sold by Lisa Clements for £325.
French Jewellery Box
This 19th C French silver plated jewellery box is an exquisite gift for your loved one, it still benefits from its original lining, measuring 16cm high by 19.7cm squared. Of extremely high quality, it is hallmarked underneath with the letters AFC. It is being sold by Norfolk Trade Antiques for £285.
Present her with a rose in this unusual antique vase, which she can use to admire her flowers forever. The blue and white bohemian glass vase was made in 1870 and measures 32cm in height and 15cm in width. This pretty blue and white vase is being sold by Salisbury Antiques for £475.
An Oil Painting
If you’d rather buy her flowers with longevity, this oil painting of ‘Flowers’ by Rowley Leggett is beautiful. The still life painting of flowers was painted in 1930 and is sure to brighten up any room. It is being sold by Wilson Antiques for £1,850.
Antique Tobacco Box
This antique tobacco box is ideal for a gentleman who enjoys a smoke. Produced in the 18th C the Georgian brass tobacco box has a simple engraved border, each side panel is also decorated with a simple punched and engraved sun device. It still benefits from its original hinge, it is in fantastic condition, it is uncertain whether the box is English or Dutch. It is being sold by Applecross Antiques for £225.
Vintage Metal Lamp
An addition for his office that will literally light up his world on a daily basis is this vintage mental lamp. Made in an industrial style this metal lamp has an old style flick switch on its base. It is being sold for a very reasonable £108, from My Discoveries by Julien Cohen.
Antique Perfume Bottle
For those who love a scent, if you are buying her perfume this Valentines why not give it with the addition of a beautiful perfume bottle. Made from silver and featuring enamelled detail in the form of pink enamelled flowers. Made in 1890 in Birmingham, this Victorian perfume holder is a thing of beauty, it is in spectacular condition and being sold by Diamonds4you for £795.
Romantic and unique these gifts are the perfect way to celebrate your love this year. As Nicholas Sparks once wrote "romance is thinking of your significant other, when you are supposed to be thinking about something else", what better way to show them that than with a keepsake of the love you share.