The month of February ushers in precious moments of joy and merriment for couples all over the world. The auspicious occasion of Valentine’s Day or the day of St Valentine’s falls on the 14th of this month. It is a day for professing your love and affection to your near and dear one. The spirit of love strongly grips everyone, as couples put words to their feelings and strive to make each other feel precious.
Like every other festival, there is a definite history behind the genesis of Valentine’s Day. There are many wondrous tales associated with Valentine’s Day .Every year lovers all across the world commemorate this magical day by exchanging gifts and affection. But most people are unaware of the fact that it actually took an ultimate sacrifice of life by a devotee of love for this magical day to come into being.
The story goes back to thousands of years ago during 300 B.C. in Rome, the birthplace of St Valentine. St Valentine was a priest during the reign of Saint Claudius II. The king was of the opinion that married men do not make excellent soldiers, as family and personal ties weaken them. So in order to maintain the expertise of his soldiers, one fine morning the King issued a decree outlawing marriage for young men. Anybody found violating the king’s charter was put to death without any mercy.
Wedding was considered to be the natural culmination of love. Saint Valentine, who throughout his tenure had performed wedding rights, stiffly opposed the king’s decision. With little regard for his wellbeing, Saint Valentine defied the king’s directive and kept on presiding over marriages covertly. When this clandestine activity came to light, King Claudius went livid rage and executed Saint Valentine on 14th of February.
Thus from that day onwards 14th of February became synonymous with Valentine’s Day. Saint Valentine’s ultimate sacrifice for the cause of love made this day a mark of eternal bond of love and sacrifice.
However, this is not the only tale that traces the origin of Valentine’s Day. As per another equally famous story, Valentine in fact was a captive who fell hopelessly in love with his jailor’s daughter during his imprisonment. On the day of his execution, Valentine left a missive for the young lady where he signed as “Your Valentine”. The day was 14th of February.
Valentine’s last letter spawned the tradition of exchange of letters and gifts and the day thereby the day came to be known as the Valentine’s Day.
Although it is practically impossible to ascertain the true nature of Valentine’s identity, he undoubtedly was a living embodiment of love. He proved by his sacrifice that the spirit of love will always triumph, regardless of the obstacles one puts in its way. That is the exact notion that we celebrate on Valentine’s Day.