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The History of Valentine’s Day

Brianna Rivera, Staff Writer

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As Valentine’s Day approaches, people from different parts of the world begin to look for a guy or girl to spend that special day with. Whether or not the day is full of cards, chocolates, and flowers, Valentine’s Day is still viewed as that one day of the year where people get to express their feelings for one another. Valentine’s Day is celebrated in a few countries, including the U.S., Canada, Mexico, the U.K., and a handful of others. Currently most people see Valentine’s Day as a day to show love and affection, but has it always been this way?

According to History.com, legend says that in third century Rome, there was a priest named Valentine who would perform marital ceremonies for young Christians. Although his work was appreciated by many, marriage for young men was illegal at the time due to the beliefs of Roman Emperor Claudius II. The Emperor believed that young men should not marry and instead should join the army. Despite the new law imposed by the Emperor, Valentine proceeded to marry young people. When the Emperor found out about his secret marriages, Valentine was martyred.

Another belief is that Valentine used to send love letters to a young woman whilst he was still in jail. The young woman was said to be the daughter of one of the jail guards. Valentine sent a letter to the young woman, which was signed “From Your Valentine,” according to History.com. This letter of affection was the oldest record of a valentine. In current times, people still give each other cards and call each other their “valentines” for the day.

In the 5th century A.D., Pope Gelasius declared that Valentine’s Day would be on February 14 to celebrate the life of Saint Valentine; however, the holiday wasn’t directly correlated with love until the 1300s. The 15th century was when people began formally writing Valentine’s Day letters to one another. Two centuries later, exchanging of Valentine’s Day cards became a tradition in the United Kingdom. Soon enough, the tradition of Valentine’s Day spread to the United States; cards were being mass produced in the United States during the 1840s.

During the week of Valentine’s Day, HMSA students sold valentines on campus to raise money and to chime in on the loving holiday. The Valentine’s Day grams were made by students in ASB and were being sold at different prices to accommodate each person’s budget.

Despite the fact that not many people know the history of Valentine’s Day, nearly everyone still acknowledges the day. A large amount of people buy their friends and significant others gifts without knowing who or what started the holiday.

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About the Writer
Brianna Rivera, News Writer

Photo by Pedro Adame.

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The History of Valentine’s Day