Every year on Feb. 14, Valentine’s Day is marked by shades of pink, chocolate, flowers, rom-coms, a bottle of your favorite wine — and images of a magical baby boy who flies around shooting arrows at people.
Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and you may have been love-struck by Cupid’s arrow.
We may see the modern portrayal of Cupid everywhere during the holiday season of love, but do we really know where he came from?
The adorable, little Cupid that we know and love today has been portrayed in many ways throughout history. There are many cultures with their own origin stories, however, the Cupid that we most closely associate with originated from the Romans and Greeks.
From Roman mythology, we get the name Cupid, which means “to desire” and derives from the Latin word cupere. Cupid is quite literally the love child of the Greek mythology goddess of love, Venus.
Did you also know that Cupid doesn’t just ignite love within people but can also spark hate with the shot of an arrow? Cupid has his trusty quiver and set of arrows, one with a barbed golden tip, sure to make people fall in love, and one with a silver blunted tip, to make someone fall out of love, or even despise a person.
Turn of the centuries, Cupid became a trademark for all things Valentine’s. Hallmark began manufacturing Valentine’s cards in 1916, when the Cupid imagery grew. To date, Valentine’s Day has remained one of Hallmark’s two biggest holidays, along with Christmas, since the company’s founding as a postcard company in 1910. Thus creating the well-known icon who is Cupid.
So this year, when you see Cupid-themed Valentine’s cards, decor, or anything in between, you will know a little more about how the magical little boy and where it all came from.