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Valentine’s Day’s Dark History Revealed

Valentine coupleMADISONVILLE, Ky. (02/11/14) - For some, Valentine’s Day is a day of celebration for lovers, friends, and family.

For others, though, it’s a day full of cynicism and melancholy, and these emotions may actually have more to do with the history of Valentine’s Day than you think.

In Ancient Roman times, Emperor Claudius II executed a named Valentine on Feb. 14.

One story has Claudius banning marriage in his kingdom. It is said that he felt that married men were more emotionally attached to their families, and thus, would not make good soldiers. He believed that marriage made the men weak.

A bishop, Valentine, realized the injustice of the ban when he saw the trauma felt by young lovers who could not consecrate their feelings. Valentine went behind the emperor’s back and joined couples in matrimony.

According to legend, Valentine was arrested and became good friends with his jailor’s blind daughter.

When he was jailed, he sent her a farewell message right before his execution, signed “From Your Valentine,” a phrase used thousands of years after.

The Catholic Church then honored the martyrdom with the celebration of St. Valentine’s Day, according to a report on TheHolidaySpot.com.

Historians are not one hundred percent positive on the exact origins of Valentine’s Day, but one thing is for sure: it is one of the most profitable holidays commercially.

The Greeting Card Association says 25 percent of cards sent every year are Valentine-related.

No matter the suspected dark origin of the holiday, Valentine’s Day for most is a celebration of infatuation, appreciation, and devotedness.

The story of Saint Valentine might have had a sad ending, but for many, Feb. 14 will be a day full of happiness.

Taylor Riley
SurfKY Lead News Reporter

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

Posted on 2/2/14
2/6/2014 - posted
3/13 - 16
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