“Today is Valentine’s Day. Or, as men like to call it, Extortion day”
Every February 14th, people from all over the world exchange gifts with their loved ones to celebrate Valentine’s Day with each other. But where did it all start? The legends are based on 3 different Christian Cleric’s, called Valentine who were all martyred, and could be the reason why we celebrate this special occasion.
One was a Priest from Rome who served in the third century. Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage for young men as he believed that single men were better soldiers than those with families and wives. Valentine didn’t agree with these laws and secretively continued to perform marriages for young lovers. Claudius eventually discovered what Valentine was doing and ordered him to death.
According to another legend, Valentine was possibly killed for trying to help Christians escape from harsh prisons where they were tortured. The third story suggests that Valentine was once imprisoned, and fell in love with a girl who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, he sent the very first ‘Valentine’ letter to her which he signed, “From your Valentine” – and that’s where we got the expression from!
Although each story is different, they all portray Valentine to be a sympathetic and romantic figure. We now celebrate Valentines day in February to commemorate the death anniversary of Saint Valentine. And as centuries have passed, we’ve gone from writing just a simple love letter, to romantic dinners, cheesy cards, and red roses.
A lot of people probably find this day pointless and a waste of money, but it’s not just about getting the biggest “I love you” teddy bear, or a massive box of love heart chocolates. It’s about showing your appreciation for anyone that holds a place in your heart, and embracing the love they have for you in return.
Happy Valentines Day.