The reigning symbol of love and emotion has always been the heart, with it's rich crimson hue representing the passion of all feelings. The symbol that decorates sweet greeting cards and shapes chocolate boxes during Valentine's Day is supposed to be the same as the organ that beats in our chest and provides us with the energy and vitality to live our everyday lives. So why is it that they've come to look so different? One with it's simple triangular shape and a small arch in the middle (♥), and one with visible veins and arteries that seem so much less dainty and so much more aggressive. I tried finding the answer, and it really isn't as clear as you'd think.
One of the many unconfirmed theories of where the sign originated is from playing cards of the 1400's. Google says that before the 13th and 14th centuries, the heart symbol wasn't associated with love, but instead they were more of a book of your faith in religion. People believed that when you cut open somebody's heart, there would be inscriptions that indicated their love for God. According to cardiologists, when you actually do cut open a human heart (a little weird), the four chambers do slightly mirror the red emblem you see on playing cards. The symbol, however, is even more similar to that of animal's heart, which makes sense since the medical community was a lot more familiar with the anatomy of other creatures than of humans back in the olden times.
After some research, I found another amusing idea involving the extinct plant Silphium, a species of fennel that was once cultivated on the Greek colony of Cyrene. The plant was said to be very versatile, working magically to solve all issues- anything from food flavoring to medicine. Silphium worked wonders and did it all. The people of Cyrene began to use the plant so heavily that the entire species was gone before the first century A.D. Cyrene citizens thought so strongly that the plant was responsible for their flourishing economy that they decided to embellish their coins with pictures of the Silphium seed, which bares a striking resemblance to the modern day symbol of the heart. I thought this theory was the most fascinating just because of how much we still value the pictures that are put on a country's currency- except nowadays they're mostly historical figures and I think it'd be interesting to put a plant on a coin instead!
Other historians, specifically a man named Pierre Vinken, seem to think that the symbol was actually a misinterpretation of a real heart. Somebody attempted to draw what famous philosopher Aristotle said has three chambers and a dent in the middle, and it resulted in the common little arched icon. An Italian physicist named Guido da Vigevano created a series of anatomical illustrations that are said to feature a heart similar to the one described by Aristotle. The shape evolved into a symbol of romance and courtly love. One of the first instances where a heart is used in a non-medical context is in the 1255 love poem Le Roman De La Poire by Thibaut, where the poet sparks the concept of being able to "give" your heart to someone, just as the lover in the poem gives away his pear.
Whatever the case, I think both types of hearts are important- the real one and the logo. They both work together to illustrate the vibrant strength and love of a human heart!