What will you give your sweetie for Valentine’s Day? Will it be candy? The odds are good it will be.
Take this quiz to see how much you know about the custom.
The answers, which may be found at the bottom of this page, are taken from an article on Valentine's Day Candy in the library database called Daily Life through History. Read the article by clicking on the icon for the database below. (You may need to enter your library card number and PIN to access the database.)
- Question #1 - Do scholars know when candy became a traditional gift for Valentine’s Day?
- Question #2 - What British chocolate maker is credited with introducing the first box of Valentine’s Day chocolates?
- Question #3 - In what decade did the New England Confectionary Company ( NECCO) begin selling conversation hearts for Valentine’s Day?
Question # 4 - About how many conversation hearts (aka Sweethearts) does the company now make in the six weeks prior to Valentine’s Day? Is it
- 8 billion
- 1 million
- Question #5 - True or False: serotonin and endorphins are found in small amounts in chocolate and are part of the reason we love chocolates on Valentine’s Day and throughout the year.
- Answer 1 – No. Precisely when candy became the traditional gift given on Valentine’s Day is unclear
- Answer 2 – In the 1860s, Richard Cadbury introduced the first Valentine’s Day box of chocolates in England.
- Answer 3 – One of the earliest American Valentine’s Day candies was invented by the one of the predecessors of the New England Confectionery Company ( NECCO), which began manufacturing Conversation Hearts in the 1860s. These heart-shaped candies were renamed Sweethearts in 1902. By the twenty-first century,
- Answer 4 – NECCO produces about 8 billion Sweethearts each year, virtually all within six weeks before Valentine’s Day, and they are the best-selling Valentine’s Day candy in the world.
- Answer 5 – Chemicals found in small amounts in chocolate are anandamide, serotonin, endorphins, and phenylethylamine ( PEA); in the human brain these chemicals create positive feelings.