A Day For Love

Imagine the enticing smell of brilliant red roses and the sugary scent of heart-shaped chocolates being delivered to treasured ones. Imagine the merriment, the bliss, and the affection throughout the day. Valentine’s Day, which falls on February 14 every year, has an origin that is still unknown, although there are many theories as to how it came to be.

Many of the theories go back to ancient Rome, with St. Valentine. The Saint had died on February 14, 269 A.D. In Ancient Rome, this day had been dedicated to love lotteries. Saint Valentine lived during the third century in Rome. Many people, including Valentine, despised the ruler of Rome at the time, Emperor Claudius. Valentine was a priest, and one of his favorite activities was marrying couples, in secret of course.

One day, he was caught in the act, and sent to jail, but the couple he was marrying had escaped in time.  While in jail, many young people visited him and explained to him that they believed in love like he did.

One particular visitor happened to be the jailer’s daughter, who was allowed inside his cell, and would talk to him for hours. On the day of his death, he gave her a small note to thank her for her friendship. He signed it, “from your Valentine.” This note was believed to have started the tradition of Valentine’s Day notes.

In the United States, the credit for the first Valentine’s Day cards goes to Miss Esther Howland. As time passed, Valentine’s Day became a day for giving small gifts to loved ones, but soon became a commercialized holiday.