Valentines Day: Its History and Celebrations


Celebrated on February 14 every year, Saint Valentine’s Day or Valentine’s Day is the traditional day on which lovers convey their love to each other by sending Valentine’s cards, typically even anonymously. The most typical feature of Valentines Day lately is the mutual change of love notes within the type of «valentines». Widespread Valentine symbols of modern occasions embrace the center-shaped outline and the figure of the winged Cupid. Since the nineteenth century, mass produced greeting cards have largely replaced handwritten notes. It is believed that just about one billion Valentines Day cards are sent every year worldwide, making it only the second largest card-sending holiday subsequent to Christmas. Women are believed to purchase approximately eighty five % of all «valentines».

Stories of many Valentines

Opinions differ about who St Valentine was. Early martyrologies mention at the very least three St Valentines under the date of 14 February. One is a priest at Rome, one other a Bishop of Interamna (now Terni in Italy) and the other lived and died in Africa. Many, nevertheless, are of the opinion that the primary are the same person.

It’s, however, widely believed that Valentine’s Day has perhaps originated from the traditional Roman feast of Lupercalia. A festival was held on February 15 in honor of considered one of their gods Lupercus, who was called upon by the Romans to ward off the threats of those fierce wolves that roamed the adjacent forests. On the eve of the festival of Lupercalia, a love lottery was organized in which the names of Roman girls have been written on slips of paper and positioned into jars. Every young man then drew a slip and the girl whose name he picked up was to be his sweetheart for the year.

The holiday subsequently turned Valentine’s Day after a priest named Valentine. At the moment when Christianity was nonetheless a new faith, Valentine was a priest in Rome. The then Emperor Claudius II, had issued an order forbidding the Roman soldiers to marry or grow to be engaged. The emperor believed that once they received married, his soldiers would want to stay dwelling relatively than struggle his wars. Valentine defied the Emperor’s decree and secretly married the younger couples. He was finally arrested, imprisoned, and beheaded on February 14, the eve of Lupercalia. Valentine was posthumously named a saint. As Christianity grew stronger in Rome, the priests moved the Lupercalia or spring vacation from February 15 to February 14, i.e., Valentine’s Day. Since then the vacation began honoring Saint Valentine instead of Lupercus.

«From your Valentine»

Based on one other story, Valentine was one of many early Christians who was seized and dragged before the Prefect of Rome and jailed for serving to some Christian martyrs. He cured the jailor’s daughter of blindness while in jail. When the emperor discovered of this miracle he ordered the beheading of Valentine. Valentine is said to have sent the jailor’s daughter a farewell message signed, «Out of your Valentine».

In 1969, as part of a bigger effort to reduce the number of saint days of purely legendary origin, the Church removed St. Valentine’s Day as an official vacation from its calendar. At current, February 14 is dedicated only to Saint Cyril and Saint Methodius.

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