Valentine's Day Eve Came But Once A Year! A Rose Strewn Path Through History

JPK Huson 1863

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vd godeys dream.jpg

Today, February 13th was traditionally " St. Valentine's Eve ". Celebrated with as much anticipation as Christmas Eve, I can find no scoffers of the era over too-heady plunges into romance laced frenzies. Little pre-war, Godey's romance drenched illustration is all the source required.

This may indicated it was tolerated with affection. How nice. Have we devolved or progressed? Hard to say. Some truly delightful, albeit a little wearing Valentine's Day customs have passed into Time, now mere History.

As we see in an awful lot of History, an awful lot in Valentine's Day history is up for grabs. It's all nice, except the part where Valentine himself becomes a saint. That seems to have been achieved, with the festival ( day ) devoted to him, beginning with his beheading. Roman Claudius, being adverse to those pesky Christians got rid of Valentine in the manner. Valentine promptly became Saint Valentine, with his own festival day. Being a man whose love of humankind got him killed, our present holiday morphed from there. Probably.

cupid venus 1500s.jpg

Cupid and Venus ( speaking of Roman and Greeks- and mythology ) were an awful lot weirder in the 16th century- but were straying from mythology into romantic forms. Venus, we left behind- cherubs we kept.
cup11a.jpg

Here's that cherub's romance laced, the 1500's 's great great great great ( great? ) grand cherub in 1861. Part of an illustration in a book on Hathitrust.


Nicely in sync with Spring's clock, and birds naturally enough deciding it is time to get on with things, Valentine's Day has been linked with ' birds coupling ' ( hence love ) since Shakespeare, who wrote more on birds and love than any, other poet ( ever ). Poets have waxed lyrical on love ever since. Being human, we read them, agreed and ' Love ' morphed through Valentine's Day customs adopted and discarded ( you should forgive the pun ) through centuries.

customs 1863 4 poem.jpg

cupid bird.JPG

Birds choosing their mates on this day has been a theme through the centuries, although lost in 2018 You so see a lot of birds on era cards- may explain it!
card howell.JPG

One of Howell's famous cards, found on LoC under merely " To Margaret ".What a wonderful collection, centuries worth of romance packaged for 1860, received by Margaret. Birds, flowers symbolic of Spring and ( whether or not Howell was aware ) a Grecian style stand.

Snip from an 1863 article on Valentine's Day.

customs 1863 4 lots.jpg

customs 1863 5 lot 2.jpg


The first man spied-laid eyes on, was your Valentine. For the wholeeeee year They did it, too, from what you read. You can imagine jealous boyfriends waiting outside their sweetheart's homes ' til first light. Since both sides ensured a successful eye-setting there was small chance anyone had old Ed, the handyman next door, fixing the doorknob that day, for their sweetie- for the next year. Besides, he was already married.

Boil an egg, take out the yolk, fill the vacant spot with salt- eat it shell, salt and white. NO cheating, no water or drink and go to sleep. Your love will come get you in the morning. You just know he will ask you to please brush your teeth before everyone rides off into the dawn.


Pinning 5 bay leaves on you pillow, one on each corner, one in the middle and sleeping on it, would make you dream of your Valentine BUT- you could also write names on slips of paper, drown each in a bowl of water and the one first to raise itself from watery sludge was he.

I don't know. Valentine's Day Eve may sound a bit much, but was it? Yes, men out there, but consider a female's life in most earlier eras. Then allow her this extra-extra day. Then remember those flowers to take home.

rose single larger.jpg


It's ok to be this guy for the day, so she can open her eyes tomorrow morning.

knight2use.jpg
 

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JPK Huson 1863

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I believe I am going to have to celebrate today since tomorrow starts Lent. They sure have my favorite candies in the stores.

Happy Valentine's Eve to all.

Happy Valentine's Day to you, too Donna! Yes, Ash Wednesday today is unfortunate, isn't it? Wait until I tell my husband you're observing it faithfully! His Catholic school background and all the efforts of the nuns made no impression, when I pointed it out to him. Can you imagine? Not that he's hugely smitten by Valentine's Day, he'll just take it over the Church calendar. I'm giving up nagging for Lent.
 

donna

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My Catholic schooling and the nuns did make quite an impression. We always observe Lent.

Have a blessed Ash Wednesday. We were also taught to do something special each day of Lent for others besides giving something up. I think that is a good idea.
 

Northern Light

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View attachment 177094
Today, February 13th was traditionally " St. Valentine's Eve ". Celebrated with as much anticipation as Christmas Eve, I can find no scoffers of the era over too-heady plunges into romance laced frenzies. Little pre-war, Godey's romance drenched illustration is all the source required.

This may indicated it was tolerated with affection. How nice. Have we devolved or progressed? Hard to say. Some truly delightful, albeit a little wearing Valentine's Day customs have passed into Time, now mere History.

As we see in an awful lot of History, an awful lot in Valentine's Day history is up for grabs. It's all nice, except the part where Valentine himself becomes a saint. That seems to have been achieved, with the festival ( day ) devoted to him, beginning with his beheading. Roman Claudius, being adverse to those pesky Christians got rid of Valentine in the manner. Valentine promptly became Saint Valentine, with his own festival day. Being a man whose love of humankind got him killed, our present holiday morphed from there. Probably.

View attachment 177095
Cupid and Venus ( speaking of Roman and Greeks- and mythology ) were an awful lot weirder in the 16th century- but were straying from mythology into romantic forms. Venus, we left behind- cherubs we kept.
View attachment 177096
Here's that cherub's romance laced, the 1500's 's great great great great ( great? ) grand cherub in 1861. Part of an illustration in a book on Hathitrust.


Nicely in sync with Spring's clock, and birds naturally enough deciding it is time to get on with things, Valentine's Day has been linked with ' birds coupling ' ( hence love ) since Shakespeare, who wrote more on birds and love than any, other poet ( ever ). Poets have waxed lyrical on love ever since. Being human, we read them, agreed and ' Love ' morphed through Valentine's Day customs adopted and discarded ( you should forgive the pun ) through centuries.

View attachment 177089
View attachment 177098
Birds choosing their mates on this day has been a theme through the centuries, although lost in 2018 You so see a lot of birds on era cards- may explain it!
View attachment 177091
One of Howell's famous cards, found on LoC under merely " To Margaret ".What a wonderful collection, centuries worth of romance packaged for 1860, received by Margaret. Birds, flowers symbolic of Spring and ( whether or not Howell was aware ) a Grecian style stand.

Snip from an 1863 article on Valentine's Day.

View attachment 177088
View attachment 177090

The first man spied-laid eyes on, was your Valentine. For the wholeeeee year They did it, too, from what you read. You can imagine jealous boyfriends waiting outside their sweetheart's homes ' til first light. Since both sides ensured a successful eye-setting there was small chance anyone had old Ed, the handyman next door, fixing the doorknob that day, for their sweetie- for the next year. Besides, he was already married.

Boil an egg, take out the yolk, fill the vacant spot with salt- eat it shell, salt and white. NO cheating, no water or drink and go to sleep. Your love will come get you in the morning. You just know he will ask you to please brush your teeth before everyone rides off into the dawn.


Pinning 5 bay leaves on you pillow, one on each corner, one in the middle and sleeping on it, would make you dream of your Valentine BUT- you could also write names on slips of paper, drown each in a bowl of water and the one first to raise itself from watery sludge was he.

I don't know. Valentine's Day Eve may sound a bit much, but was it? Yes, men out there, but consider a female's life in most earlier eras. Then allow her this extra-extra day. Then remember those flowers to take home.

View attachment 177102

It's ok to be this guy for the day, so she can open her eyes tomorrow morning.

View attachment 177101
I was expecting a Valentine thread. I knew you wouldn't let me down, JPK!
 

JPK Huson 1863

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#8
I was expecting a Valentine thread. I knew you wouldn't let me down, JPK!

Typically kind of you, NL! Had to, on my anniversary- it was a present to myself, joining here Feb. 14th, 6 years ago. Had been a shameless lurker, intimidated by so many historians, gee whiz. No one notices you, if you slide along the wall and creep up onto the top seat, corner of the bleachers. :angel:
 

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