Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine..

Where did the Tradition of Card giving on St. Valentine come from? We have to go back to a time before the Christians took over the "civilized world".

It all started as a pagan tradition in the third century. The god Lupercus, was said to watch over the shepherds and their flocks and keep them from the wolves. During this time hordes of hungry wolves roamed outside of Rome where shepherds kept their flocks. So the Romans celebrated a feast called Lupercalia to honor Lupercus so that no harm would come to the shepherds and their flocks.

Additionally, during the Lupercalia, but in honor of the goddess Juno Februata (are you still with me here?) , the names of young women were put into an urn. Later their names were drawn by lot. The boys and girls who were matched would be considered partners for the year (yes, the Romans invented the friends with benefits), which began in March. It will probably surprise nobody that this celebration continued long after the wolves ceased to be a problem to Rome.

After Christianity took over Rome, the Christian Church sought to replace this holiday with something a little more tasteful (read less ... way less sexual). It changed the name-drawing. Now, both men and women could draw names. Surely, the young Romans felt cheated as they found the name of a Christian saint on their cards rather than the wonderful companion they wished for. Instead of getting a companion through the lottery, they got a saint which they were to exemplify for that year. 

The Romans were miffed. They missed their friends with benefits every February. Some ingenious Roman lads thought up an idea. Instead of hoping that the woman they admired would be on their card, they went about sending cards with their names on them to these women. This tradition has carried on to this present day. 

So if it was not for the Romans (a.i. Italians) we would not have a Valentine Day Card Tradition. Life is so much better with an Italian...(I know... I live with the Hitman!)

Happy Valentines Day


Granny Annie said...

Love you post and happy you have the Hitman! I actually received the card you showed a few years ago and it is my all time favorite!!!

LL Cool Joe said...

Ha ha that card is so funny. :D

Without Valentine's day, I'd be a lot richer, but maybe less popular. :D

Fireblossom said...

Those damn christians ruin everything! ;-)

That card up top is horrible! (but hilarious)

Happy Valentine's Day, gal!

LulĂș said...

Hahaha - Love the card! I know a few Peggys. lol

So why am I not surprised that the Romans started the whole "friends with benefits" thing? They start everything! ;)

Happy Valentine's Day to you and your Roman...I mean, Hitman! lol

Riot Kitty said...

LOL @ the card! I love that site.

Holland said...

Annie: I think the card is hilarious and why doesn't it surprise me that you received this

LLCJ: I guess I will never be popular

Shay: Yeap some Christians know how to kill a good party...

Lulu: Aah those Romans invented many things... many many things... (wink wink)

RK: That site is the best together with the lolcats/cheeseburger