Valentine's Day started in the time of the Roman Empire.
In ancient Rome, February 14th was a holiday to honour Juno.
Juno was the Queen of the Roman Gods and Goddesses. The Romans also knew her as the Goddess of women and marriage.
The following day, February 15th, began the Feast of Lupercalia.
The lives of young boys and girls were strictly separate. However, one of the customs of the young people was name drawing.
On the eve of the festival of Lupercalia the names of Roman girls were written on slips of paper and placed into jars.
young man would draw a girl's name from the jar and would then be
partners for the duration of the festival with the girl whom he chose.
Sometimes the pairing of the children lasted an entire year, and often, they would fall in love and would later marry.
the rule of Emperor Claudius II Rome was involved in many bloody and
unpopular campaigns. Claudius the Cruel was having a difficult time
getting soldiers to join his military leagues.
He believed that the reason was that roman men did not want to leave their loves or families.
As a result, Claudius cancelled all marriages and engagements in Rome.
good Saint Valentine was a priest at Rome in the days of Claudius II.
He and Saint Marius aided the Christian martyrs and secretly married
couples, and for this kind deed Saint Valentine was apprehended and
dragged before the Prefect of Rome, who condemned him to be beaten to
death with clubs and to have his head cut off.
He suffered martyrdom on the 14th day of February, about the year 270.
that time it was the custom in Rome, a very ancient custom, indeed, to
celebrate in the month of February the Lupercalia, feasts in honour of
a heathen god.
these occasions, amidst a variety of pagan ceremonies, the names of
young women were placed in a box, from which they were drawn by the men
as chance directed.
pastors of the early Christian Church in Rome endeavoured to do away
with the pagan element in these feasts by substituting the names of
saints for those of maidens.
as the Lupercalia began about the middle of February, the pastors
appear to have chosen Saint Valentine's Day for the celebration of this
it seems that the custom of young men choosing maidens for valentines,
or saints as patrons for the coming year, arose in this way.
Hundreds of years ago in England, many children dressed up as adults on Valentine's Day. They went singing from home to home.
One verse they sang was:
Good morning to you, valentine;
Curl your locks as I do mine,
Two before and three behind.
Good morning to you, valentine.
In Wales wooden love spoons were carved and given as gifts on February 14th. Hearts, keys and keyholes were favourite decorations on the spoons.
The decoration meant, "You unlock my heart!"
the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who
their valentines would be. They would wear these names on their
sleeves for one week. To wear your heart on your sleeve now means that
it is easy for other people to know how you are feeling.
In some countries, a young woman may receive a gift of clothing from a young man. If she keeps the gift, it means she will marry him.
Some people used to believe that if a woman saw a robin flying overhead on Valentine's Day, it meant she would marry a sailor.
If she saw a sparrow, she would marry a poor man and be very happy. If she saw a goldfinch, she would marry a millionaire.
love seat is a wide chair. It was first made to seat one woman and her
wide dress. Later, the love seat or courting seat had two sections,
often in an S-shape. In this way, a couple could sit together -but not
of five or six names of boys or girls you might marry, As you twist
the stem of an apple, recite the names until the stem comes off. You
will marry the person whose name you were saying when the stem fell
a dandelion that has gone to seed. Take a deep breath and blow the
seeds into the wind. Count the seeds that remain on the stem. That is
the number of children you will have.
If you cut an apple in half and count how many seeds are inside, you will also know how many children you will have.