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Valentine's Day A Venerable Holiday

RUTLANDThere 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 Feb. 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 EmperorClaudius. Claudius then had Valentine jailed for defying him. In 496 A.D. Pope Gelasius set aside February 14 to honor St. Valentine. Gradually, Feb. 14 became the date for exchanging love messages and St. Valentine became the patron saint of lovers. The date was marked by sending poems and simple gifts such as flowers. Commercial valentines were introduced in the 1800s and now the date is very commercialised. The town of Loveland, Colorado, does a large post office business around Feb. 14. The spirit of good continues as valentines are sent out with sentimental verses children exchange valentine cards at school.When this Valentines Day rolls around dont forget your Valentine.

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