Carlos Resino & Izum Adnan
Sports Editor & Staff Reporter
Emperor Claudius II, in the third century AD, banned marriage as he believed married men made bad soldiers so he banned all men from marrying. However, a priest from Rome, named St. Valentine, thought this was unfair and decided to break the rules and marry multiple girls in secret.He was found out and was eventually was sentenced to death on February 14th but he was not executed until he delivered a love letter to her signed, “from your Valentine”.
We’ve been celebrating Valentine’s day for around 1520 years, as the first Valentine’s Day was celebrated in the year 496 AD. People believe that Saint Valentine’s day was originated by a Roman festival called Lupercalia, Lupercalia was an ancient Roman annual festival that took place in the city of Rome between February 13th and February 15th.
It’s thought that boys drew girls names from a box as part of the celebrations and the names that were drawn were forced to be married. The church later wanted to make this festival a Christian celebration and decided to use it to remember Saint Valentine as well.
Malaysia, Indonesia, Iran, India, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Russia are the only countries that don’t celebrate Saint Valentine’s mainly for religious reasons but many Muslims celebrate Valentine’s Day.
Interesting facts about Valentine’s Day
- About 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged each year. This makes it the second largest seasonal card sending time of the year.
- You could also pop over to Finland where Valentine’s Day is called Ystävänpäivä, which translates into “Friend’s day.” It’s more about remembering your buddies than your loved ones.
- In the Middle Ages, young men and women drew names from a bowl to see who would be their Valentine. They would wear this name pinned onto their sleeves for one week for everyone to see. This was the origin of the expression “to wear your heart on your sleeve.”
- In 1537, England’s King Henry VII officially declared Feb. 14 the holiday of St. Valentine’s Day.
- Richard Cadbury produced the first box of chocolates for this holiday in the late 1800s
- More than 35 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolate are sold each year.