Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day

What is the story behind Valentine’s Day?

This date has adopted different names; Valentine’s Day, or “Day of Love and Friendship,” are among the most common, but what is the origin of this celebration? Its origin is in Roman times, to tell the truth, in a rather tragic story, to which romanticism was later attributed.

According to Catholic tradition, during the second half of the third century, there were at least three saints with the name of Valentine, to whom this celebration could be associated. However, the most famous story is that of a Roman physician.

According to this version, Valentin became a priest. He opposed Emperor Claudius II’s “The Gothic” when he prohibited marriage between young people because he thought that single men were better soldiers since they did not have as many responsibilities or sentimental ties as the married ones had.

In any case, Valentin continued to marry young people in secret.

Upon finding out, Claudius II sentenced Valentine to death on February 14, 270, alleging disobedience and rebellion. For this reason, Valentine’s Day is commemorated every year.

And why is it celebrated on February 14?

Pope Gelasius, I established February 14 in the Catholic liturgical calendar to celebrate Saint Valentine in the year 496 AD.

Although some historians attribute this date to the history of Valentine’s Day, there is also the version that this holiday was intended to replace the pagan fertility festival Lupercalia, whose origins date back to Ancient Rome.

From tragedy to romance

Thanks to his story, Saint Valentine became the patron saint of love, youth, and marriages, according to Catholic tradition, becoming popular in France and the United Kingdom in the 14th century.

Around this time, famous poets began to write about Valentine’s Day, associated with romantic love. An example of this was Geoffrey Chaucer’s poem “The Parlement of Foules,” which is considered the creator of the celebration.

Later, in the 18th century, the exchange of Valentine’s letters became popular in the United Kingdom, the rest of Europe, and the United States, which is why Pope Paul IV decided to remove this tradition from the liturgical calendar since there were different versions of its source.

How is Valentine’s Day celebrated today?

Currently, Valentine’s Day is not considered a religious celebration, but it is still a date to celebrate love.

In Western countries, as is the case in most Latin America, February 14 is known as the “Day of Love and Friendship” and is celebrated with gifts such as flowers, letters, or chocolates, either between couples or friends.

Curious fact:

In Colombia, this date is celebrated on September 18, since during February, Colombians have expenses related to the school season, in addition to the fact that there was no special celebration in September.

Leave a Comment

Scroll to Top