Romance is in this month

February=Valentine's Day=Romance

On February 14th, all across this country, and in many countries around the world, candy, flowers and gifts are exchanged between loved ones. All in the name of St. Valentine. Who is this mysterious saint and why do we celebrate this holiday? The history of St. Valentine is shrouded in mystery, clouded by myths and age old traditions. The day as we know it contains remnants of both Christian and ancient Roman traditions. The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred for their faith.

One legend says that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. The Emperor, Claudius II, decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives. He outlawed marriage for all young men who were his potential soldiers. (Dumb move, right?)Valentine realized the injustice of the decree. He continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When his actions were discovered, Claudius ordered him put to death.

According to another legend, Valentine may have actually sent the first 'valentine' greeting himself. While in prison, it is believed that Valentine fell in love with his jailor's daughter. Before his death, it is said that he wrote her a letter signed 'From your Valentine,' an expression that we still use today.

Although the truth behind legends may never be known, the stories that live on show his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic, and, most importantly, a romantic figure. A true hero by any standard. It’s no wonder his names lives on. So, when you get a heart shaped box of chocolates or a lovely card this February 14th, thank your sweetheart and a third century martyr for making this one day so very special.

Now, I'm looking for good Valentine stories. What was the most romantic gift or gesture you got or gave on Valentine's day.

11 comments:

Reese Mobley said...

Interesting information, Pat. Not once did you mention Hallmark. (grin)

My hubby isn't a big romantic guy, but he tries to do something thoughtful. He usually gets me a card, Jordan almonds and scratch tickets. Yep, love me some sweet crunchy nuts (wink) and lottery and he knows it. Hey, it might not be romantic, but he thinks it is and that's what counts.

Roxann Delaney said...

With no SO (hubby, sweetie, or anything close) and 4 daughters, the only place I find romance is in books, whether reading or writing. But that's okay with me. :)

Reese, I'd say those nuts and tickets are very romantic and much more personal than a bouquet of flowers (they die) or anything else. He knows what you like! He pays attention. ;)

Becky A said...

Is there anyone out there that has been married or attached for more than two years that can still say, their SO is romantic? Mine never has been but he does occasionally try. :) I have begun to think that "romance" is a female idea that has been highly overrated. When my hubby touches my heart it has nothing to do with candlelight, roses, date nights or chocolate. It does contain unexpected dish washing, disappearing ice from my car windows and being surprised by a clean car instead of a mud encrusted one. These things are in no way the stuff of romance but they can sure warm my heart because they mean he is thinking of me. Or maybe he just got tired of looking at my formerly green car! Either way those are the things that make my wheels turn. Hallmark can keep their cards, Russell Stover can keep their fattening chocolates and I'll keep my pot bellied, mostly bald sweetheart that thinks of me when I'm not expecting him to. :)

Roxann Delaney said...

Oh, I don't know, Becky. Giving up chocolate, especially Russell Stover, is asking a bit much. After all, chocolate is one of the main food groups. *grin*

Pat, great stuff on the history of Valentine's Day!

Starla Kaye said...

My husband isn't overly romantic, okay barely at all. But there were years way, way in the past when he'd send me flowers for Valentine's Day. It's been so long ago I wonder if they even still have those varieities of flowers...

This year he keeps telling me that we're going to the WSU game for Valentine's Day. That's fine and I like the games, but we have season tickets.

Becky A said...

Roxann,
I never said I was giving up chocolate, I just said it isn't what turns my crank, romantic wise that is!
Does it irritate anyone else that the gifts they like to give to us, like sheer nighties, are really for them? Kind of like Starla's WSU game. :)

Roxann Delaney said...

I was teasing, Becky, and speaking more for myself. I did often get boxes of chocolate, mostly RS, but my kids always ate it up before I could.

It truly is the kind, thoughtful, small and loving things that mean the most.

Nina Sipes said...

Pat,
My husband brought home a box of chocolates for me today for Valentine's day. He wanted to make sure he didn't forget.

Now for the laughter to start:
He bought five others too. One for the parts lady at the John Deere Dealership, two for the women at the local quick shop. One for the woman who works at our local gas station, and one for our secretary.

A few years ago I started getting looks from the flower shop women (where he buys the chocolate). You know, the kind that look sympathetic. The one you get when someone is sure your husband is cheating on you. I can't imagine how much stamina they thought he was actually capable of. Anyway, I started to talk about how much we appreciated them carrying the chocolates so that he could bring smiles to more people. The looks ceased.

Are you ready for more? He, in thirty years, has never remembered I like the ones with nuts--only.

Of the classic romance gifts, I think those are a society thing that dictated what was acceptable gifts for a young woman to receive from a man and not be thought fast. In my pre-married life,I've had to refuse gifts from men because they were 'too much'. The guideline was handy to know; perfume, candy, flowers, hanky....

I have two gifts from my husband that warmed my heart because they were so unexpected and out of place and time. I have a small habit of picking up interesting rocks/pebbles. He doesn't like it. The day he brought me one he thought I might find interesting brought tears to my eyes. I still have it. I don't think he knew it was petrified wood when he picked it up. And once, I thought he brought home the cutest little oil can. A few months later, when I open a drawer in my sewing machine desk, I found it--all cleaned up, with machine oil inside, and a romantic note. Our guys are romantic. They are not defined by tradition.

Joan Vincent said...

When I read Pat's blog yesterday I drew a blank on anything hugely romantic. Over the years we've gone out for dinner or gone to the dinner/dances given by our church but nothing else came to mind. So I asked my husband and he reminded me of the time I "kidnapped" him and took him to a motel for the weekend after a meeting the Friday before Valentine's. that did bring back a few fond memories!

Penny Rader said...

I think thoughtfulness can be truly romantic. Little things like checking the air in my tires or adding anti-freeze to my car. My dh used to make interesting late night snacks that he called 'conglomerations.' I'll have to remind him of that. I walked into the kitchen on Valentine's Day and he was making me cookies, then he told me to check the bedroom. He had bought me a big, soft pillow. My other one had been getting progressively smaller and harder. After the cookies came out of the oven we went for dinner and a movie.

Roxann Delaney said...

YES, Penny! Those things are romantic!! Lucky you!