The Story Behind Valentine’s Day!

There is more to Valentine’s Day then giving out presents and showing your love.


Sydney Dunn, Contributor

You probably already know that every year on February 14th, it is Valentine’s Day – a day to give and show your love for someone. Do you ever stop the decorating and shopping for Valentine’s and think, what am I doing this for? What is Valentine’s Day actually about? Everyone knows that it is an annual festival to celebrate love for friends and family. But is there more to this magical holiday than that? 

The day we call Valentine’s Day originated from a Roman festival. It was called Lupercalia, and just like Valentine’s Day, it occurred in February. At the start of the festival, boys would pull girls’ names from a box, and whoever they received would be their girlfriend during the festival. Some of them even ended up getting married. In later years, the church that ran the festival decided to transform it into a Christian celebration that would honor as well as remember St. Valentine. Who is St. Valentine, though?

There are several stories about who St. Valentine really was. However, we know for sure that he was born in 226 AD. In the third century, he was a priest in Rome. When Emperor Claudius ll banned marriage, Valentine felt strongly against his decisions and continued arranging marriages although it had to be in secret. However, this arrangement did not last forever because Claudius ended up discovering it and threw Valentine in jail. From there, Valentine was sentenced to death. He was killed on the day we now call Valentine’s Day, February 14. Before he was sent off to be killed, he sent a love letter to the woman he loved. The letter was signed “from your Valentine.”

Valentine’s Day is celebrated in many different countries around the world. The most common tradition is giving candy and flowers to those you love–especially red roses, which represent love and beauty. It is the most popular day of the year to get married! I hope that special someone remembers to give you a valentine this year!