After what seems like a lifetime, January is finally over and we can now start to look forward to Valentine’s Day, Easter and warm Summer Nights, Christmas will be here before you know it once again.
But you may not be aware, 2020 is a leap year. Meaning for that 1 single day, every 4 years, a woman is allowed to ask a man to marry her. But do you know why or how this engagement tradition came about?
There’s no concrete reason, but the common perception is that it dates back to the 5th century, when the myth has it, an Irish nun called St Bridget complained to St Patrick that women had to wait too long for their suitors to propose.
The end outcome was to strike a deal, and St Patrick decided that on this one day in February, which occurs once every four years, when women were allowed to propose.
Overtime and throughout Europe this tradition grew with new rules and stipulations. With it becoming common in many European countries, that any gentleman who refuses a woman’s proposal on a leap day should pay a penalty. The fine could be paid in the form of a new gown, money, or 12 pairs of gloves for the lady.
The logic behind the gloves was that the woman could then wear them to hide her embarrassment as not having an engagement ring. There were laws in the middle ages governing these penalties, but we don’t think they’re enforced any more.
Some random facts about leap years:
There is no doubt that things have moved on; of course, both men and women can propose, on any day of the year. But it can still be fun to observe traditions sometimes.
If you do get engaged in 2020, contact Elite Marquees to discuss your requirements and to find out how we can help you.