When February emerges, we all think of one day: February 14th. It keeps us warm during these particular cold month and something to look forward to among those grey and cold days. During this time, we share chocolates, special dinners, loving cards with our loved ones. However, where is Valentine’s Day originating from?
When you search the internet for Valentine’s Day, you can find many stories about Valentine and the name or shall we say them. One of our favourite legends, tell the story about Valentine the priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, Emperor Claudius II outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine could not bear this injustice. Thus he did not obey Claudius’s law and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered to put him to death.
So what has this all to do with poetry?
All artists from painters, poets, acrobats, musicians typically were being hired by royalty / authorities. In this case, this is not much different. Chaucer wrote a peom to celebrate the first anniversary of Kind Richard’s II and Anne of Bohemia’s engagement. And thus it is largely considered the first written instance where Valentine’s Day is associated with romantic love. And the lines in the poem goes like this that put the Valentine’s Day movements into motion.
“For this was on seynt Volantynys day, Whan euery bry