Valentine’s Day is just regarded as a secular commercial day of love for most people today. A date where people show their significant other that they love them because someone else did a long time ago and it just grew in acceptance over time. Basically because days like Valentine’s Day just show up on our calendar and the retail big businesses start marketing to us, we just accept this day and look at it as harmless and partake in it. Everyone knows that we celebrate love on Valentine’s Day but most people don’t know exactly why we do and why it’s even called Valentine’s Day. So, here is the story of Valentine’s Day!
Looking for a romantic destination to spend time with your beloved one? Check Yolcu360 car rental options out!
What is the real story of Valentine’s day?
Where does Valentine’s Day come from? Many people think that is just one of those American holidays but the celebration of Valentine’s Day is not American. Others like to believe that it is a Christian holiday because it was named after a Christian Saint by the Roman Catholic Church. However the truth is that Valentine’s Day was made by the Roman Catholic Church to Christianize the pagan celebration of Lupercalia.
Lupercalia was one of the most ancient Roman festivals which was celebrated every year in honor of Lupercus (the god of fertility also known as the God Faunus). This festival, which celebrated the coming of spring included fertility rites, orgies, fornication, sex with minors, drunkenness and other activities like the pairing off of women with men by lottery. Lupercalia was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus as well as to the founders of Rome (Romulus and Remus).
During this time the winter solstice is long gone and the Pagans are now seeing that the days are getting gradually longer. This was one of the most important fertility festivals for Pagans. The festival was held on the 15th of February in the looper cow where Romulus and Remus were said to have been nurtured by the she-wolf.
So, how did we get here?
Feast of Lupercalia
February 14, Valentine’s day, lovers day, everyone knows. A day of love, gifts and kisses, everyone knows. A time of romance and affection between lovers and loved ones, everyone knows. However long long time ago, it was a time of horror, torture, and brutal animal slaughter, no one knows. It was a time of physical abuse, rape, and forced marriages, no one knows. It was a time of Christian persecution and martyrdom, no one knows.
Once upon a time, in ancient Rome, a pagan feast was celebrated from the 13th to 15th of February. This was the feast of Lupercalia, the feast of love and fertility, but nothing about it showed love and affection.
At the beginning of this festival, the single unmarried men of Rome, would gather, naked. Each one would slaughter and sacrifice a goat and a dog, skin the dead animals, and cure their hides into whips.
The unmarried women and young girls of Rome would be lined up and striped naked, for the men to whip them till they tired. It was believed this would increase the fertility of these women. The names of these women would then be written in pieces of parchment paper, wood or stone, and put in a lottery box. Whichever woman the men drew out of the lottery box, was theirs to have carnal knowledge of, throughout the festival.
If one or both end up falling in love, they would get married. If neither of them falls for the other, they would appear in the next festival and matchmaking, and the next, until a match is made. To some, this brutal drunken festival was a delight, a time to look forward to, when they get to find their match and choose their mate. While to others, it was a season to abhor, a time of shame, disgrace and forced relationships.
At the dawn and spread of Christianity, pope Gelasius 1, deemed this feast inappropriate and unchristian, and the naked abusive aspect of this feast gradually ceased. They could still choose their mates on that day, but no more would there be public nakedness, beatings, and rape.
As the years went by, Shakespeare and other famed authors popularized it as a day of romance, goodwill and affection, a day for lovers and loved ones, its dark history lost.
Why do we celebrate Valentine’s day on February 14?
Around BC 210 Rome was under the rule of King Claudius-II. It then happened that the king gave an order that the youth should join the military in order to protect the country.
Not just that! He also implied a strict rule that whoever joins the army, should not marry. The same city of Rome had a Father named Saint Valentine who did not like the rule passed by the king.
So he started to perform secret weddings to the single soldiers from the army with their loved ones. The king soon came to know about this and immediately gave an order that Saint Valentine should be arrested and hanged to death. However before being hanged, Saint Valentine had to undergo torture in the jail.
During this time, he used to meet the jailer’s daughter very frequently. The jailer’s daughter was visually challenged Saint Valentine prayed to god to restore her vision and mysteriously she got her vision back and became a follower of Saint Valentine.
As the time passed by, the day to hang valentine has come exactly, a day before his death Saint Valentine wrote his last letter to the jailer’s daughter and signed “From Your Valentine” in the end.
The very next day, he was hanged to death on Feb 14th and was buried in Flaminia as per the history & evidence. As he brought several lovers together by getting them married, Feb 14th is celebrated as Valentine’s day.
All the countries throughout the world started celebrating love with a few more incidents on Valentine’s Day. In 1537, the King of England King Henry VII declared Feb 14th – Saint Valentine’s Day and made it a holiday. And this is how the entire world started celebrating Valentine’s Day. Indians might have also started celebrating Valentine’s day from the Britishers era.
What Day is Valentine’s Day in 2023?
Valentine’s Day is celebrated on Tuesday February 14, and we are ready to bathe our beloved with signs of our love!