The True History of Valentine’s Day

Did you know that Valentines Day is actually a saint day originating back to the ancient times…?

During the third century AD, young men were forbidden to get married, because Emperor Claudius II (aka Claudius the Cruel) wanted all his army to forever remain single.¹ Most probably because then they were using the energy to fight, rather than make love, therefore made much better soldiers.

St Valentinus was a holy priest in Rome, who performed marriage ceremonies for young lovers in secret. He did not like the law that Claudius had implemented, so he must have believed that everyone deserved love!

Persecuted for his belief in love, St Valentinus was beheaded on February 14, between 269 or 278 AD.² It is believed that during his time in prison, he fell in love with the jailer’s daughter, and wrote her a love letter signed: “From Your Valentine”.

He did not like the law that Claudius had implemented, so he must have believed that everyone deserved love!

In 496, Pope Gelasius ordained St Valentine as the Patron Saint of Love, and marked the day of his death became the official saint day in the Roman Catholic Church.³  He is often represented with birds and roses.

Because of this, I regard Valentine’s Day a saint day. I will even go as far as saying “Happy St Valentine’s Day’. Even though there is a lot of mystery shrouded over this character, I love the fact that he believed in love and made sure it happened to others, despite the strict law of the time, even though he could not have love himself.

So, today, I say to you: “Happy St Valentine’s Day!” ❤


¹ History.com staff, The History of Valentine's Day, History.com, http://www.history.com/topics/valentines-day/history-of-valentines-day, [2009], A+E Networks, [Date accessed: 14 January 2015], (paragraph 3).

² History.com staff, On This Day in History: St Valentine Beheaded, History.com, http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/st-valentine-beheaded, [2015], [Date accessed: 14 January 2015], (paragraph 4).

³ Unknown, St Valentine, Catholic.org, http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=159, [n.d.], [Date accessed: 14 January 2015], (paragraph 2).
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