Valentines Day History

Valentine’s Day is well known across the country as a day of romance and love. February 14th is associated annually with gifts, flowers, and candy, but what are the roots of this romantic holiday?

Valentine’s Days history is centered on a catholic bishop named St. Valentine more than 800 years before the mainstream celebration of this day. This day was originally a pagan holiday celebrated by Romans in the Fifth Century. Originally on this day in mid February young men would draw a woman’s name out of a box. That woman was to be his companion for the following year.

Later, Pope Gelasius mad a change to Valentine’s Day history by ordering that men stop that ritual. Instead they were to draw the names of saints out of the box and then work to be like that saint in the upcoming months. Men began to look towards Saint Valentine as the patron saint of love.

St. Valentine was beheaded by Emperor Claudius in the 200’s. The emperor had banned marriage, believing it to make men weak, especially on the battlefield. However, Valentine continued to marry men and women in secret and was eventually caught and punished.

Legend has it that before his death the saint has imprisoned. During this time he fell in love with a blind woman. According to Valentine’s Day history his love for her was so strong that he cured her blindness before he was put to death.

In St. Valentine’s last days he wrote to her “From Your Valentine”. This message was the first Valentine’s Day card, and is seen on the majority of cards handed out every February 14th.

Though Valentine’s Day history has evolved much over the years, one theme has remained constant. It is still a day where men seek the affection of women. The difference is they now use cards and candy instead of a pulling names out of a box.