Valentines' Day - What Started This Ritual?

By
Real Estate Agent with The Buyers' Counsel

Valentines DayFebruary 14 is a day that is associated with lovers, candy, flowers and Hallmark cards.  But how did it originate? 

Valentine Namesakes  

It seems that Valentine was a rather popular name for early Christian martyrs.  There are at least three of them to which this holiday is possibly attributed to.  Coincidentally, all three were said to have been executed on February 14.  

Legend has it... 

The most widely attributed legend to the actual origination of this holiday is to St. Valentine who in AD 270 was beheaded for rebelling against what he thought was an "unromantic" ruling. 

The Roman Emperor, Claudius had made a determination that marriage was a destructive force to his army since it made men be poor soldiers. So he decided to ban marriage from his empire.  St. Valentine was a priest who defied the ruling and secretly married couples who would come to him for help.  

When Claudius made the discovery of the rebellious priest he had him arrested and during his captivity tried to convert him to paganism.  Valentine, in turn, attempted to convert Claudius and when he failed, his execution was ordered. 

During his imprisonment, Valentine fell in love with the blind daughter of the jailer. Through his intense faith and love for her he miraculously cured her blindness.  Just before he was taken to be executed, he wrote a farewell note which was passed to the girl.  It read, "From your Valentine"

The message has resonated throughout the centuries and Sunday is once again dedicated as a day of love.

So, whatever you do on this day - don't forget your Valentine.

*************************************************************************************

 Claudette Millette, Broker, Owner - The Buyers' Counsel

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Rainer
48,922
Clark Hitchcock
Re/Max Nyda Realty Inc - Chilliwack, BC
Realtor - Fraser Valley

Glad we do not get beheaded for love, well some people actually seem to lose thier head, or fall head over heels.

Feb 13, 2010 03:34 AM #1
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Clark:

I love the play-on words... Some husbands may actually have to worry about their fate if they forget their Valentine.

 

Feb 13, 2010 03:37 AM #2
Rainmaker
1,049,913
Steve Loynd
Alpine Lakes Real Estate Inc., - Lincoln, NH
800-926-5653, White Mountains NH

Claudette, I spent some time in the store today trying my best to pick out a card for my wife...had I known love can cure the blind I may have spent even more time on my choice. Thanks...your Valentine of the North

Steve.

Feb 13, 2010 05:05 AM #3
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Steve:

That's quite a legend, isn't it? I know your wife will grealty appreciate the card. There is something about cards and women... I know I love them.

Feb 13, 2010 06:47 AM #4
Ambassador
1,153,946
Craig Rutman
Helping people in transition - Cary, NC
Raleigh, Cary, Apex area Realtor

Very interesting post Claudette.

And after all these years, I just thought Hallmark created Valrntine's day!

Thank you for clarifying that for me!

Feb 13, 2010 07:40 AM #5
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Craig:

Hallmark may not have originally created the day - but they have certainly made a fortune from it.

Happy Valentine's Day.

 

Feb 13, 2010 11:09 AM #6
Ambassador
3,075,864
Chris Ann Cleland
Long and Foster REALTORS®, Gainesville, VA - Bristow, VA
Associate Broker, Bristow, VA

Claudette:  First you help me understand what Boxing Day is all about, now the origins of Valentine's Day.  You are so informative!  :)

Feb 13, 2010 01:53 PM #7
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Hi, Chris Ann:

I just have a fascination with all things historical.  We can't be sure that this is completely accurate - but it is a pretty interesting legend, isn't it?

 

Feb 13, 2010 01:59 PM #8
Rainmaker
647,582
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Thanks for your interesting blog. I enjoyed the different stories about the origin of Valentine's Day. Regardless of how it started I like it.

Feb 14, 2010 04:43 AM #9
Rainmaker
647,582
Team Honeycutt
Allen Tate - Concord, NC

Thanks for your interesting blog. I enjoyed the different stories about the origin of Valentine's Day. Regardless of how it started I like it.

Feb 14, 2010 04:45 AM #11
Rainmaker
506,608
Robert L. Brown
www.mrbrownsellsgr.com - Grand Rapids, MI
Grand Rapids Real Estate Bellabay Realty, West Mic

I think a woman started it to just get herself some chocolates. I am kidding you know that.

Feb 14, 2010 06:10 AM #12
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Allen:

I a glad you enjoyed the legend.  I find these things to be fascinating.

Robert:

I know you are kidding about that.  We want much more than chocolates :)

 

 

Feb 14, 2010 07:00 AM #13
Anonymous
Anonymous

Regardless of the origin, it is evident that it is a pagan belief practiced, and another excuse for the commercial world to exploit the unsuspecting public.

Feb 14, 2010 10:14 AM #14
Rainer
478,183
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

There is also strong evidence that all of the legends associated with Valentine's Day come from Geoffrey Chaucer. Hmmmm.

Nonetheless, history is fascinating, as is herstory, and on Valentine's Day, herstory probably carries more weight. LOL

Feb 14, 2010 09:18 PM #15
Rainer
478,183
Not a real person
San Diego, CA

By the way, if you like history, you should join the ActiveRain History Station group.

Feb 14, 2010 09:20 PM #16
Rainmaker
403,509
Claudette Millette
The Buyers' Counsel - Ashland, MA
Buyer, Broker - Metrowest Mass

Hi, Russel:

I did read that reference to Chaucer with regard to the origin of Valentine's Day. It is among the many references associated with this day. I just really liked the legend about the priest. It was all so long ago I don't think anyone is quite sure about the exact beginning.

I will check out the ActiveRain History Station group. Thanks, Russel.

 

Feb 14, 2010 10:33 PM #17
Rainmaker
1,460,483
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

Well that was really interesting and I didn't realize that I knew nothing about the history of this day!  Thanks so much.

Feb 17, 2010 02:14 PM #18
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