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Valentines Day – Origins

Valentine’s Day is a well known holiday around the world but is celebrated differently in Japan compared to its western origins.In Japan valentines day is celebrated as a chocolate day and the romantic parts of the holiday seem to be lacking. For many, giving valentine’s chocolate feels like an obligation and has no roots in romance at all. Valentine’s Day is a known as a day for romance in western culture. Couples often spend this day together over dinner and exchange gifts. If you are single, this is the day you pluck up the courage to tell that person you like how you feel. If you’re shy, you can do so by sending a card or letter signed only “from your valentine.”

The origins of valentine’s Day are interesting and very old.
Over 2000 years ago the people of Rome would celebrate “Lupercalia” also known as “dies Februatus” (origin of the month February) This was a health and fertility festival held in mid February to mark the start of the spring. Men and women would be paired off by lottery like a huge goukon. This practice was popular and a major event in the roman calendar each year. Along time later In the 5th century, the Christian pope renamed this day “Saint Valentines day” after a martyred (made famous by his murder) priest of the same name.

Valentine had became well known around 270AD when the then emperor of Rome ordered that all unmarried men fight in the Roman army. This was not taken well by most, as it meant many young couples would be separated, likely forever. A priest named Valentine began to secretly marry many young couples. Saving the husband’s from the war. The emperor upon finding out sentenced Valentine to death. While in jail, it is said that he would send secret messages to the jailer’s daughter whom he had befriended. Each message signed “from your valentine”

Published inNative Teachers

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