Pamela Haag recaps the bloody history of Valentine’s Day. A nugget:
Originally, the feast day of St. Valentine remembered two 3rd century martyrs by the name of Valentine who were elevated to sainthood in the early middle ages. Both Valentines—one the Bishop of Terni and the other a priest in Rome—were allegedly decapitated by their persecutors on February 14.
Incidentally, St. Valentine (as the two Valentines seem to have merged into one figure by the 9th century) is the patron saint of epileptics, not lovers.
Medieval miracle plays based on the Bishop of Terni Valentine show him brutally beaten, bloodied, and decapitated before angels transport him to heaven. It really puts you in a mood for love.
Shows what skilled PR can do for an image.