The History of Valentine's Day


A cross the world, heart-shaped chocolates, flowers and gifts are exchanged between loved ones, all in the name of St Valentine. But who exactly is this saint and from where did all these traditions emerge? The history of Valentine’s Day is shrouded in mystery, with a number of legends attached to it. In fact, there existed three Catholic martyrs by the name of St Valentine.

Legend 1
According to one legend, a Roman emperor banned soldiers from marrying way back in the third century. St Valentine, who was the only one to take up this issue, became an advocate for soldiers and was finally executed for being outspoken.

Legend 2
The second legend says that St Valentine was killed for his belief in Christianity. Before he died, it is said that he left a farewell note for a loved one signed as “From Your Valentine.”

Legend 3
Yet another legend states that the Christian church may have decided to celebrate this day in the middle of February in an effort to ‘Christianise’ celebrations of a pagan festival. Interestingly, in ancient Rome, February was the official beginning of spring and was considered as a time of purification. February 15 was also celebrated as a fertility festival.

Volume 1 Issue 8


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