Monday, February 13, 2006

A History -- The Valentine Heart

Many people have wondered what the origin of the Valentine Heart is -- the graphic doesn't represent what the human heart looks like that closely.

One theory I read about years ago is that during a particularly amorous evening, an artist glanced at his lover in the candlelight....she was on the bed, on her hands and knees facing away from him. Something about the shape of her derrier from that angle prompted him to sketch the "heart".

Nations have gone to war over a woman so it stands to reason that a well shapped ass may have been the catalyst for millions of designs involving candy boxes and greeting cards.

Whenever this artist and his muse lived, we know it was before the 1500's because the early playing cards had "hearts" featured on them as one of the suits.

There are varying opinions as to the origin of Valentine's Day. Some experts state that it originated from St. Valentine, a Roman who was martyred for refusing to give up Christianity. He died on February 14, 269 A.D., the same day that had been devoted to love lotteries.

Legend also says that St. Valentine left a farewell note for the jailer's daughter, who had become his friend, and signed it "From Your Valentine". Other aspects of the story say that Saint Valentine served as a priest at the temple during the reign of Emperor Claudius. Claudius then had Valentine jailed for defying him. In 496 A.D. Pope Gelasius set aside February 14 to honour St. Valentine.

Gradually, February 14 became the date for exchanging love messages and St. Valentine became the patron saint of lovers.

3 comments:

utenzi said...

As holidays go, the history behind Valentine's Day isn't very inspiring. Your story about the artist and his bootie inspiration was quite interesting though. Thanks for sharing that idea!

Grey Biker said...

I'll stick with the artist idea. I can live with that one.

Euian said...

Nice story.
Happy Valentines day!