14th February, St Valentines Day
What does Valentines Day mean to you?
- A single red rose left on your pillow?
- A dozen red roses in a big bouquet?
- Chocolates in a heart-shaped box?
- Romantic dinner for two at your favorite restaurant?
- Receiving a card from the one you love or even a secret admirer?
Do you ever wonder how valentines day came into being?
It may surprise you to learn that its origins go way back. Firstly, the day gets its name from a famous saint. But who was St Valentine? The popular belief is that he was a Roman priest in the 3rd century AD, who performed marriage ceremonies in secret. Why? Because the Emperor of the day, Claudius II, had banned marriage, having the viewpoint that married men made poor soldiers. Eventually, Claudius found out, had him arrested and sentenced him to death. Whilst in prison he fell in love with the jailer’s daughter. On the day of execution, he wrote a love letter to her, which he’d signed ‘from your Valentine’. The date, 14th February.
Okay, so now you know who St Valentine was let’s look at how Valentines Day came into being. Historians aren’t 100% sure how it started but it’s believed to go back to 496 AD and could be linked to a Roman festival called Lupercalia. This festival was held in the middle of February to celebrate springtime. It is believed, that during this celebration men drew women’s names ‘out of a hat’, they became ‘partners’ for the duration of the festival and some even got married. As time went on the Catholic Church became unhappy with a festival which had pagan roots so decided to change its nature and introduced it as a way to remember St Valentine and Valentines Day was born.
It has now been adopted as the day we express our feelings to the one we love.
In the build-up to 14th February, we will be sharing some ideas on how you can make this year’s celebration extra special.
Until we meet again. Do come and say hello on our Facebook page.