Happy St. Valentine’s Day!

Does anyone know the real story of St. Valentine’s day? It’s not a holiday made up by greeting card companies or chocolate companies or attached women but it actually has historical roots. You know me, I love anything history related!
So the REAL story behind February 14th: 
Valentine was a roman in the time of the Emperor Claudius II who outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, recognizing that this decree was ridiculous, decided to marry the young lovers any way. The emperor found out and ordered Valentine executed.
The date began as a pagan festival of fertility and at the end of the 5th century Pope Gelasius declared it St. Valentine’s day and then in the middle ages the day became associated with romance. Written valentines began to appear after 1400 and the oldest valentine still in existence was wrtten by Charles the Duke of Orleans in 1415 while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London after the Battle of Agincourt. Here it is, wonderful spelling and all: 

Go forth, my hert, with my lady;
Loke that we spare no business
To serve her with such lowliness,
That ye get her grace and mercy.

Pray her of times prively
That she keep trewly her promise
Go forth &c.

I must as a hertless body
Abide alone in hevyness,
And ye shal do wel with your maistress
In plesans glad and mery.                    pleasure

Go forth  

What did you think? By the middle of the 18th century it was common for every class of people to exchange tokens of affections on the day and it started to turn into the holiday we celebrate today! 
Wonderful history lesson right? Well. I guess there is only one thing left to ask…
Happy St. Valentine’s Day!

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/05911152739035519557 Norm

    even more hilarious than this post is the fact that we actually have a children’s book in the office about this. i should send it to you for your future bebes!!!