Happy St. Valentine’s Day to all our readers! And just what is Valentine’s Day all about?
Opinions abound as to who was the original Valentine, with the most popular theory that he was a clergyman who was executed for secretly marrying couples in ancient Rome in spite of Emperor Claudius II, who felt that marriage weakened his soldiers. In any event, in A.D. 496, Pope Gelasius I declared Feb. 14 as Valentine Day. Through the centuries, the Christian holiday became a time to exchange love messages, and St. Valentine became the patron saint of lovers. Esther Howland, a native of Massachusetts, is given credit for selling the first mass-produced valentine cards in the 1840s. The spirit of love continues today as valentines are sent with sentimental verses, from and to young and old romantics.
Here’s a fitting image that captures the “spirit of love”:
Look familiar? LOVE is a pop art image created by artist Robert Indiana.
According to the MOMA:
Few Pop images are more widely recognized than Indiana’s LOVE. Originally designed as a Christmas card commissioned by The Museum of Modern Art in 1965, LOVE has appeared in prints, paintings, sculptures, banners, rings, tapestries, and stamps. Full of erotic, religious, autobiographical, and political underpinnings—especially when it was co-opted as an emblem of 1960s idealism—LOVE is both accessible and complex in meaning. In printed works, Indiana has rendered LOVE in a variety of colors, compositions, and techniques. He even translated it into Hebrew for a print and a sculpture at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.
Interested in finding a love match? Try pairing up these famous lovers from history.
Looking for that perfect Valentine for that special someone? Then look no further. These unusual Victorian valentines are the antithesis of the lacy, sentimental valentine greeting. “In mid-Victorian England the custom of sending daintily printed valentines, overflowing with hearts, cupids and poetical posies was generally understood to consist of an exchange of missives between special loving friends. Yet beneath the sweet exterior and tender words of these lace-paper beauties lurked something far more sinister – the comic valentine!”
Here’s one of the most unusual Valentine’s Day cards I’ve ever seen. This paper creation is available at xlessthan3′s Etsy shop. Talk about holding my heart in your hands!
Image via The New York Times.
Other sites of interest:
“I Love You” in Many Languages
From Arabic to Zulu, find the way to say “I love you” in more than sixty languages. Simple site, perfect for finding a phrase for Valentine’s Day or any romantic moment. From TravLang, a provider of language instruction and travel information.
Celebrate! Holidays in the USA
Information about national holidays celebrated in the United States. Provides brief histories of holidays such as Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, and Flag Day (first proclaimed in 1949). Also includes information about “fun” days such as Valentine’s Day, April Fool’s Day, and Halloween; and selected ethnic and regional celebrations such as Chinese New Year, Mardi Gras, and Cinco de Mayo. From the Embassy of the United States of America, Stockholm, Sweden.
The Sweet Science of Chocolate
This site contains two features related to the science of chocolate: the video archives of a 1999 Valentine’s Day event at the Exploratorium in San Francisco, and an interactive feature that “takes a closer look at the sweet lure of chocolate.” Discusses the history of chocolate, the chocolate-making process, possible health effects, and more. From the Exploratorium.
RobertSabuda.com: Simple Pop-Ups You Can Make!
This site provides patterns and detailed instructions, illustrated with photographs, for making more than a dozen pop-up cards. Includes cards for Christmas, Halloween, Valentine’s Day, and Thanksgiving. From a pop-up card engineer and author.
Hundreds of ideas for Valentine’s Day crafts, gifts, cards, games, and treats for the classroom, spouses, and others. Includes illustrated instructions. From FamilyFun magazine.
Related post: 10+1 Best Links Ever for Valentine’s Day
~MadSilence the older & wiser