Birthday candles and cakes go together as milk in the tea. No matter where you are from, which country you live in, and what culture and religion you follow, candles and cakes must go together. Without the candles, the birthday cake seems empty. Your birthday doesn’t feel complete if your candles are missing from the birthday cake. Well, it is simply because candles add charms on birthdays.
So have you ever wondered who started this candle culture? How did it start? What is the role of candles on a birthday, and why is it necessary to have candles on your birthday cake?
This blog post digs into the history of candles, their roles, and how it adds charms to birthdays for you.
History of Candle:
Candles and torches have been a part of human history before electricity was invented. People used candles to illuminate their places and wipe away the darkness just as the fire torches were used.
However, we know a little about the origin of candles. Historians maintain that candles were a big part of Ancient Egyptian culture. They used to make the torches and candles through animal tallow and the melted fats. However, in the beginning, there was no candle wick present in them.
Introduction on Wicked Candles:
In 3,000 B.C, ancient Rome develops candle wick by dipping rolled papyrus in the animal fats, or the beeswax. Thus, they became quite popular as they were easy to carry and lit the rooms. No place was left without candles, be it the church, school, religious places, homes, etc.
Rise of Beeswax Candles:
During the middle ages, as the world was using candles made out of Tallow, Europeans have something else in their mind. They produced beeswax candles. These candles were pure, pleasant-smelling, and expensive. Therefore, they were majorly used by wealthy people and in the church. Since they did not use animal tallow in the making of a beeswax candle, it did not produce a foul smell, neither did it create smoky flames. As time progresses, the resources were cheapened, and the chandlers (the candle makers) go from home to home to make candles from the fats saved in the kitchen. People made candles at home and sold them in the marketplace.
Mass Production of Odorless Candles:
Durable and lasting candles that give off no smoke or smell became popular when Micheal Eugene Chevreul extracted stearic acid. This acid was extracted from the animal fats. What is interesting is that stearic acid candles are still popular in Europe.
Mass production became possible with the invention of a candle molder that used a cylinder with a movable piston. Through this piston, candles become erected and solidified. Likewise, candles became a common day-to-day commodity with the mass production of candles.
As time passes, people looked for different ways to make candles cheaper and more accessible. This was the time when paraffin was introduced in the 1850s. Paraffin was found in naturally occurring petroleum. All it had to do was to refine it and make it usable.
As it was getting economical to buy candles, people realized that paraffin candles have a low melting point. It needed to last a bit longer, and so another method of the combination was used. This time they mixed Paraffin with Stearic acid.
The decline of Candles in the Late 1900s:
Well, light bulbs and electricity gradually replaced candles. And now we see the decline in candle-making.
Modern Use of Candles:
Candles are now the symbol of decorative items and gifts. You can find birthday candles in every shape, size, color, and scent. Furthermore, people have also found different ways to make candles such as soybean wax, or palm wax, etc.
Besides, candles also serve the purpose of igniting romance between people during candlelight dinner. They represent celebrations and positive vibes in ceremonies, religious festivities, and church. Likewise, they add beauty to the home décor.
How and When Candles started to Add Charms on Birthdays?
Now comes the awaited question of this blog post: how and when candles start to add charms on birthdays? The answer lies in the 18th century as per a teaching writing book agency and other resources. When the mass production of confectionery items started, the rich wanted to stand out and celebrate their birthdays with a special flair. So, they added candles to their birthday cakes.
Now here comes the interesting bit. As per the Greek religious ceremony, candles were used when offering prayers to God Artemis. So when they would blow the candles and utter their prayers, they considered that the smoke carried their prayers to Artemis. Hence, their prayer was answered.
When the tradition of adding birthday candles started, they asked to blow the candle and make a wish. So they believe that the smoke carries their prayers to god. Although people may have forgotten how it started, they haven’t forgotten to make a wish while blowing the candles.
What does the candle symbolize?
A candle is a symbol of illumination. It wipes away the darkness and brings everything come to light. It helps you see things from a real perspective. As a metaphor, it represents the life of an individual who has come to light. Likewise, who has owned their truth? It is a symbol of clarification, clarity, purification, and liveliness.
In a religious manner, when the candle burns, it wards off the evil. The lightworkers, also known as the spiritual shamans, use candles with Reiki vibes to the candles and burn them as protection.
Therefore, in short, candle symbolizes the following aspects:
Modern representation of Candles
How here comes the part how candles are used in the modern days in the birthdays’ celebrations:
- Some people use letter alphabets candles to write the name of the person on the cake.
- Some use numeric candles to represent the name of the person
- There are colorful, wavy, and designing candles that add charms to birthdays cake.
- Furthermore, there are two types of candles that people use such as flammable and nonflammable candles.
- And lastly, the candles on the cake look great in the photos. Hence, they add charm to birthdays.