Where did Valentine’s Day Come From?

Warning:  This story is not for the faint of heart…

February 14 is Valentine’s Day. Although it is celebrated with the giving of candy, Valentine flowers, or other gifts between couples in love, it originated in 5th Century Rome as a tribute to St. Valentine, a Catholic bishop, who, in AD 270 had been persecuted by Emperor Claudius.  At least that’s my favorite version…

As legend has it, Emperor Claudius had determined that married men made poor soldiers. So he banned marriage from his empire. But Valentine would secretly marry young men that came to him. When Valentine was found out, he was imprisoned in the emperor’s attempt to convert him from Christianity. During the days that Valentine was imprisoned, he fell in love with the blind daughter of his jailer. His love for her, and his great faith, managed to miraculously heal her from her blindness before his death. Before he was taken to his death, he signed a farewell message to her, “From your Valentine.” The phrase has been used on his day ever since.

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