by Anca Aflat
The 14th of February is the date that marks the celebration of Valentine`s Day, a day in which people from all over the world celebrate the gift of love and friendship. A special day filled with joy and emotion! Both children and adults celebrate Valentine’s Day. This day is set aside for exchanges of love with sweethearts, friends and family. But what do we really know about the origins of this celebration? Who is this Valentine and what really happened to him?
Valentine’s Day is said to take its origin from 3rd Century Rome as a tribute to St. Valentine, a Catholic bishop. Before the establishment of Valentine's Day, the Romans had practiced a pagan celebration in mid-February (Lupercalia). The celebration featured a lottery in which young men would draw the names of teenage girls from a box. The girl assigned to each young man would be his companion for a year.
Saint Valentine, according to romantic legend, was a kind-hearted Roman priest who married young couples against the wishes of Emperor Claudius II. Roman Emperor Claudius banned marriage from his empire hoping that thus more men will join his army, but Valentine secretly performed marriages. When Claudius found out about Valentine, he sentenced him to death. While in prison, Valentine fell in love with the blind daughter of his jailer. Before his death, he sent a farewell message to her, signed "From your Valentine". The phrase is still used on Valentine cards today.
On Valentine's Day we give cards, candy and flowers to the people we love. Students sign Valentine's Day cards and bring them to school for their classmates. Popular Valentine's Day symbols include red and pink hearts, bows and arrows, and Cupid. Cupid is a mythical figure. He is a winged god of love and the son of Venus.
So... If there is someone you love or like, sent them a valentine card to show your feelings.
Remember that a traditional valentine doesn’t have the name of the sender!