Both, Valentinus and Valentine are dead. They were killed by their Roman Emperor but, their love lives on and has transcend time.
When Pope Gelasius declared “February 14th is St. Valentine’s Day” it was not the Valentine’s Day of the 20th century. The month of February at that time was a month for fertility sacrifices, mating season, and festivals. Consequently, as the Middle Ages advanced so did the evolution of St. Valentine’s Day. Love was the great motivator. Love for a people progressed into individual affection and ultimately romantic love.
By the late 13th or early 14th century the Catholic appeal of St. Valentine’s Day evolved to a national move of romantic love. Lovers begin putting pen to paper to woo their partners. The Duke of Orleans in London is said to have written the first valentine poem. While in prison he wrote about his dedication to his wife. Historians asserted that King Henry V had a valentine written for his love interest, however this cannot be substantiated.
Fast forward centuries later and observe the evolution from a Catholic celebration to a secular express of love. As the printed press matured in London, valentines received card inked with affection. By 1700, Esther Howland began marketing Valentine’s Day cards in America, and the rest as they say is history.
When a parent was asked how she felt about Valentine’s Day, she declared “I enjoy Valentine’s Day and even though I brought the valentine cards for my daughter to give to her friends. I think I would like to create the cards. I saw a great idea for homemade valentine cards on Instagram. It will be a great bonding activity for me and my daughter”.
Love is the strongest motivator, and Valentine’s love has surely transcend death, paganism and time with a decisive appearance in classrooms. Happy Valentine’s Day to all.