Valentine’s Day in Denmark

The people of Denmark celebrate Valentine’s Day in a very traditional way. Cards, flowers, and love notes are the three main components of the celebration. There are however some ways that are uniquely Danish in practice.

Valentine’s Day celebrations started rather late in Denmark. The Danes apparently only warmed up to the idea sometime during the early 1990s. They fashioned it from the American custom but made modifications. Thus the Danish Valentine resulted which is celebrated with much fanfare and activity.

Denmark has its lover’s card. This card traditionally was transparent and showed an image of a lover presenting a gift to his beloved. This image can be seen when the card is placed in front of a light.

The giving of white flowers called “snowdrops”is another Valentine’s Day tradition observed in the country. This tradition is observed with utmost care and love. The white flowers are not only given to lovers but to friends as well.

Still another popular tradition of love in Denmark is the writing of  gaekkebrev. This can be a romantic poem or a love note. What is interesting about this is the humorous aspect of its observance. The sender of the gaekkebrev signs the message with dots instead of his name. The recipient of the gaekkebrev must guess who the sender is. She will be rewarded with an Easter egg on that same year if she guesses right. It should be noted that Valentine’s Day in Denmark is celebrated a few weeks before Easter. This tradition of sending these teaser notes is actually considered part of the Danish Easter tradition. 

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