Valentines Day greetings to all the 'Chicks' here on DWF, I love you all!!!
From Holiday origins.com:
"No one is quite sure exactly who Valentine was. There are at least three and possible eight different Valentines claimed to be the real romantic. The three most likely Valentines were all church martyrs. One was killed with a group of believers and the other two, a priest of Rome and a Bishop of Interamna, beheaded by Emperor Claudius II in 269 A.D. The remains of one of the Valentines is said to be in the church of St. Praxedes in Rome."
"There are several legends regarding Valentine. He was said to have been imprisoned and while there, cured the jailer's daughter from blindness. Yet another story has him falling in love with the jailer's daughter sending her a letter signed "from your Valentine." However the most likely origin of Valentine's day goes back to the Roman Lupercalia, a feast celebrating the God Lupercus. During that feast, young women would put their names into a box from which young men would draw. This matchmaking process would then enamor the two youth until the next year. Associating the matchmaking feast with the martyrdom of Valentine was convenient because the days were almost identical."
"Sending love notes on Valentines Day occurred much later. Charles Duc d' Orleans, while imprisoned in the Tower of London, supposedly wrote amorous poems and letters to his wife in 1415. Valentine love notes gradually increased in popularity until their mechanization in 1840. Since 1840, Valentine Cards have become tremendously popular all over the world."
And this from American Catholic.org:
Pope Gelasius I was, understandably, less than thrilled with this custom. So he changed the lottery to have both young men and women draw the names of saints whom they would then emulate for the year (a change that no doubt disappointed a few young men). Instead of Lupercus, the patron of the feast became Valentine. For Roman men, the day continued to be an occasion to seek the affections of women, and it became a tradition to give out handwritten messages of admiration that included Valentine's name.
There was also a conventional belief in Europe during the Middle Ages that birds chose their partners in the middle of February. Thus the day was dedicated to love, and people observed it by writing love letters and sending small gifts to their beloved. Legend has it that Charles, duke of Orleans, sent the first real Valentine card to his wife in 1415, when he was imprisoned in the Tower of London. (He, however, was not beheaded, and died a half-century later of old age.)
So there you have it, two versions of the real story behind Valentines day.
I hope you all have a favorite person to exchange greetings with and be extra special nice to today.