Roses are red, violet is blue; if you will have me, I will have you… Ring a bell? It’s the cliché in starting out a romantic prose we hear every now and then. Valentine’s day is in the air.
The origin of Valentine’s is not likely known to many. People have just grown to understand Valentine’s Day as a time for showing love and affection to their special person.
Let’s go back to a bit of history. Valentine’s day is derived through the course of time in honor of two martyrs, both named Valentine.1 There are other versions or possibly more martyrs named Valentine that made their contribution to Valentine’s day hundreds and thousands of years ago. If you’re a bit of a historian, try researching this – It can be a good read.
Here is some tidbit about these two Valentine martyrs. One Saint Valentine was put to death for defying Emperor Claudius II when he performed marriages of young men in the time that this practice was banned. The emperor decreed that young men cannot marry for he thought unmarried young men were better and capable soldiers than men who have wives and children.2
The other Saint Valentine was executed for trying to convert the emperor to Christianity when the emperor first tried to convert him to Roman paganism. Accordingly, when he was jailed he fell in love with his jailor’s daughter. Before he was executed, he wrote the first ‘valentine card himself, a note that said “From your Valentine.”2
Through those times, imagine the evolution and the back and forth story telling about Saint Valentine – adding the meaning of celebration of love and men and women romantically getting together.
Sharing a trivia – here in the US during the 1840’s, the first mass-produced ‘valentines,’ greeting cards were sold by Esther Howland. Each valentine was a hand-written letter; a hand-made card designed with lace and floral decorations.1
Through all those years and flashing forward in the 21th century, greeting cards have been exchanged together with confections and flowers, all symbolizing love.
Today this Valentine’s Day, relish history and make new traditions by adding your special little something to your present you will give to your beloved.