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History of Valentines Day @ Girl-Doll Fashion Gossip

  History of Valentines Day (Doll Article)

(February 07, 2007 by support Send DollMail )
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Valentines Day, like any other ancient holiday, is based on an equal amount of fact and fiction. The myths are what make the holiday so romantic and the facts give the myths a bit of a backbone. The most popular story is such a mix of tales and legends that it makes it hard to pull out which pieces are really true. But, who really cares what is true? It's all about love anyway, right?

The Pagan Festival

Thousands of years ago, Rome had a festival in the middle of February. This festival was dedicated to the pagan god Lupercus. As it was a festival for male fertility and Women's Rights were not yet fully enacted, most women find the festival rather distasteful today.

Young men who were coming of age would pick the name of a young woman randomly from a box. The girl who was chosen would be that young man's, uh, date for the rest of the year. Because the early Catholic Church was not a huge fan of this style of drawing, they insisted the names of saints be drawn by the young men instead of girls. They boys would then try to emulate their saint for the rest of the year. I'm sure the young ladies were pleased with the switch, even if the boys weren't.

The Church Makes a Switch

In the 5th Century AD, the church was doing away with pagan holidays and gods. They wanted to find a suitable saint for the celebration. They finally landed on St. Valentine. St. Valentine was martyred for his faith by Emperor Claudius on February 14 centuries before.

According to legend (and not necessarily fact) Claudius felt like married men made bad soldiers. He forbade men to marry in his kingdom so that his army would be better. Valentine, an early Christian, took pity on the men and married them to their loves in secret. When Claudius found out, he was not pleased with Valentine.

Valentine in Prison

Claudius had Valentine thrown into prison for breaking the law and refusing to become pagan. While in prison, Valentine (again, according to legend) fell in love with the blind daughter of the jailer. Through his love and his faith, the daughter had her vision restored.

Eventually, Claudius got tired of trying to convert Valentine, and Valentine had no luck converting Claudius to Christianity. Claudius had Valentine stoned and beheaded. The last thing Valentine did before his death was send his love a note signed, "From Your Valentine." The saying has lived on.

The Lovey Dovey Part

Even without the drawing for female company, young men in Rome continued to use the festival as a time to seek the affection of young ladies. They often sent cards around the 14th signed with Valentine's name. Cupid, the Roman god of love and son of Venus, began to be associated with the day as well.

The first real Valentine we know of was sent in 1415 from the Duke of Orleans to his wife. The Duke was in prison at the time. The card tradition has stayed and Valentines cards now count for 25% of cards sold throughout the year in the United States alone.

This Valentine's day, whether you celebrate with your love or with your friends, know that you are enjoying a day in much the same way as people have done for centuries. Have fun, and enjoy everything the day has to offer. After all, Valentines Day comes only once a year!


Comments
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Kirstin_is_her

90/Female
Guam
Posted On: June 5, 2007
this was veeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrrrry interesting! I loved it!
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arabamericansw

22/Female
Japan
Posted On: February 14, 2007
Very fascinating. It's a romantic history, that's really, really cool^_^
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cornelia_weasl

24/Female
Erwin, TN
Posted On: February 12, 2007
My special man is so flippin' HOT. We were an inch (literally) away from kissing. I was leaning foward in the back of his seat and he turned arounf to talk to the guy next to me and there I was.

There's alos a guy at school who I think likes me. If he does I want him to ask me out already.
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llp

23/Female
Brazil
Posted On: February 11, 2007
Great article. Unfortunately, valentine's day in my country are only in June...
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thehousekey14

31/Female
Chicago, IL
Posted On: February 10, 2007
Gotta love Single's Awareness Day!
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cornelia_weasl

24/Female
Erwin, TN
Posted On: February 10, 2007
I've got someone special, but I can only hope and hope a lot.
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dmfan101

22/Female
San Diego, CA
Posted On: February 10, 2007
why do people wait a whole entire year to be romantic with the one they love? why do they wait until it's febuary 14?! that makes no sense!
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dakotaosu

38/Female
Lenapah, OK
Posted On: February 10, 2007
i really liked thet article it was GREAT!!!!!!! I kinda like v-day cause u get presants.
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dakotaosu

38/Female
Lenapah, OK
Posted On: February 10, 2007
I kinda like Valentines day because we get roses from our favorite person
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Dollmaker1103

23/Female
United Kingdom
Posted On: February 10, 2007
I don't hate valentines day but it definetely loses its appeal after a few prank cards that you find out are from yuor friends.
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notavirgobut14

22/Female
Chaska, MN
Posted On: February 9, 2007
i have never really liked valentine's day.. its just kind of pointless, if you like someone you should show it all the time, i dont really care if my bf gets me anything......
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MO1405

22/Female
Oceanside, NY
Posted On: February 9, 2007
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LoTjUh_007

21/Female
Netherlands, The
Posted On: February 9, 2007
Fun to Read =)

on Valentines day you can also give presents to friends..

On our school friends give roses to their friends.

So its nog always about the "special one"
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SilverLily22

25/Female
Zionsville, IN
Posted On: February 9, 2007
Unfortunately, Valentine's Day sort of loses its appeal after you leave elementary school. When you're a kid you have to give valentines to everyone and they all have to give one to you. And you get candy. It's a nice holiday. But in middle school and high school you don't get parties or candy or anything. Unless you have a "special someone" you don't get anything. Being one of those poor people who has no "special someone", I don't acknowledge the holiday. But that's just me.
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DizzyDolls

28/Female
Pembroke Pines, FL
Posted On: February 8, 2007
I'd like to hear about Valentine's Day in other countries. From being such a Japanophile, I know how it works over there, but that's about it. I'd love to hear about traditions around the world.
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