Friday, 14 February 2014

Friday 14th February: A Day of Love

Saint Valentine was a priest in Roman times under the rule of Claudius. Claudius had decided that in order to create a stronger army with more men, he needed to impose a ban on marriage. The factor that had been preventing men from signing up to the army had been them not wanting to leave their wives and families, therefore the ban on marriage would be successful in creating a bigger army. 

Many people thought that the new rule was cruel and unnecessary, including St Valentine. One of his favourite activitiesw as to marry couples, an activity which he continued to do even when the ban was enforced. He performed hundreds of ceromanies in secret, until one night, he was caught. 

Valentine was thrown in jail and sentenced to death, but legend has it that young people. Ame to visit him and threw flowers and notes up to his window. 

They wanted him to know that they, too, believed in love.

St Valentine talked to the daughter of the prison guard who helped to keep up his spirits. On the day of Valentine's death he left a note to his new friend, thanking her for her friendship and loyalty. He signed it 'love from your Valentine.'

That note started the custom of sharing messages of love on Valentine's Day, February 14th, the day that he died. People think about love and friendship and they laugh at the way that Emporer Claudius thought he could stop love, but love cannot be defeated.

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