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Love you madly – the story of St. Valentine’s Day

February 12, 2014 | Scott

It’s St. Valentine’s Day this Friday February 14th – time for chocolates, flowers and of course that all-important card. But why?

Opinions are divided as to how it all started – one view is that Valentine was a priest in third century Rome at a time when when Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than married men with families and so outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine defied Claudius and continued to perform weddings in secret. When The Emperor discovered what Valentine was doing he ordered that he be put to death. Another story is that Valentine was killed for helping Christians escape Roman prisons where they were often beaten and tortured, whilst yet another theory is that an imprisoned Valentine sent a letter to a young girl – possibly his jailor’s daughter – who visited him in jail which he signed ‘from your Valentine’. Others claim that The Christian Church decided to celebrate the feast of St. Valentine in an effort to ‘Christianize’ the pagan festival of Lupercalia. Whatever the truth behind the legend all the stories show the martyred St. Valentine to be a romantic figure, although there was nothing to connect him with any sort of celebration until Geoffrey Chaucer’s poem ‘The Parliament Of Fowls’ written in 1383. Valentine greetings became popular in The Middle Ages, though written Valentines didn’t begin to appear until after 1400. The oldest known one still in existence today was a poem written in 1415 by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while he was imprisoned in The Tower of London following his capture at The Battle of Agincourt. Valentine’s Day was mentioned in Shakespere’s ‘Hamlet’ around 1600, and in 1797 ‘The Young Man’s Valentine Writer’ was published which included ideas for verses to help aspiring lovers to woo their would-be other halves. As posting letters became cheaper people began sending Valentines rather than delivering them personally, meaning that they could then be anonymous. Mass-produced cards then replaced handwritten notes, and today over one billion St. Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year making it the second biggest card-sending holiday of the year after Christmas. Approximately 85% of these cards are sent by women. In addition to this over 15 million e-cards were sent in 2010. Oh and 3% of pet owners send a card and / or buy their pet a present. Now there’s a funny thought…

I Love You THIS Much

We’ve produced a very cool retro-styled t-shirt that features two cute (well, we think that they’re cute!) dinosaurs. What could be better to give as a present to your loved one this Valentine’s Day? Well, ok, chocolates, flowers and a card are all pretty good ideas, but why not get them this t-shirt as well. You know it makes sense. After all, you do love them THIS much – don’t you?

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