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A look into the history of Valentine’s Day

Published: Monday, February 14, 2011

Updated: Monday, February 14, 2011 10:02

Valentine's Day is celebrated all over the world by millions of people, but the actual holiday originated from the martyrdom of a saint.

Saint Valentine was murdered on February 14th between AD 269 and263. One of the reasons for his murder was thought to have been because of his willingness to marry Christian couples.

 "Being Christian was not a crime back then, but not worshiping the emperor was," said John Benson, local chaplain.

 Benson said that while marrying Christian couples in church was frowned upon, in his personal opinion he thinks Valentine refused to honor the emperor and that was the main reason for his murder.

 Very little is known about the saint. He is buried outside of Rome, the specific location unknown.  Benson said it wasn't until the late 1300s that people started relating the holiday to romantic affection.

Many people now celebrate St. Valentine's Day, not as a religious holiday, but as a way to celebrate loved ones. Valentine's Day is often celebrated with the giving of chocolates, cards, and gifts showing affection towards one another.

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