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Monthly Archives: January 2013

The Legend of St. Valentine

The Legend of St. Valentine

The history of Valentine’s Day–and the story of its patron saint–is shrouded in mystery. We do know that February has long been celebrated as a month of romance, and that St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains vestiges of both Christian and ancient Roman tradition. But who was Saint Valentine, and how did he become associated with this ancient rite?

The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus, all of whom were martyred. One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius and continued to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, Claudius ordered that he be put to death.

Other stories suggest that Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons, where they were often beaten and tortured. According to one legend, an imprisoned Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl–possibly his jailor’s daughter–who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine,” an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is murky, the stories all emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic and–most importantly–romantic figure. By the Middle Ages, perhaps thanks to this reputation, Valentine would become one of the most popular saints in England and France.

Origins of Valentine’s Day: A Pagan Festival in February

While some believe that Valentine’s Day is celebrated in the middle of February to commemorate the anniversary of Valentine’s death or burial–which probably occurred around A.D. 270–others claim that the Christian church may have decided to place St. Valentine’s feast day in the middle of February in an effort to “Christianize” the pagan celebration of Lupercalia. Celebrated at the ides of February, or February 15, Lupercalia was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, the Roman god of agriculture, as well as to the Roman founders Romulus and Remus.

To begin the festival, members of the Luperci, an order of Roman priests, would gather at a sacred cave where the infants Romulus and Remus, the founders of Rome, were believed to have been cared for by a she-wolf or lupa. The priests would sacrifice a goat, for fertility, and a dog, for purification. They would then strip the goat’s hide into strips, dip them into the sacrificial blood and take to the streets, gently slapping both women and crop fields with the goat hide. Far from being fearful, Roman women welcomed the touch of the hides because it was believed to make them more fertile in the coming year. Later in the day, according to legend, all the young women in the city would place their names in a big urn. The city’s bachelors would each choose a name and become paired for the year with his chosen woman. These matches often ended in marriage.

Valentine’s Day: A Day of Romance

Lupercalia survived the initial rise of Christianity and but was outlawed—as it was deemed “un-Christian”–at the end of the 5th century, when Pope Gelasius declared February 14 St. Valentine’s Day. It was not until much later, however, that the day became definitively associated with love. During the Middle Ages, it was commonly believed in France and England that February 14 was the beginning of birds’ mating season, which added to the idea that the middle of Valentine’s Day should be a day for romance.

Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages, though written Valentine’s didn’t begin to appear until after 1400. The oldest known valentine still in existence today was a poem written in 1415 by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. (The greeting is now part of the manuscript collection of the British Library in London, England.) Several years later, it is believed that King Henry V hired a writer named John Lydgate to compose a valentine note to Catherine of Valois.

Typical Valentine’s Day Greetings

In addition to the United States, Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France and Australia. In Great Britain, Valentine’s Day began to be popularly celebrated around the 17th century. By the middle of the 18th, it was common for friends and lovers of all social classes to exchange small tokens of affection or handwritten notes, and by 1900 printed cards began to replace written letters due to improvements in printing technology. Ready-made cards were an easy way for people to express their emotions in a time when direct expression of one’s feelings was discouraged. Cheaper postage rates also contributed to an increase in the popularity of sending Valentine’s Day greetings.

Americans probably began exchanging hand-made valentines in the early 1700s. In the 1840s, Esther A. Howland began selling the first mass-produced valentines in America. Howland, known as the “Mother of the Valentine,” made elaborate creations with real lace, ribbons and colorful pictures known as “scrap.” Today, according to the Greeting Card Association, an estimated 1 billion Valentine’s Day cards are sent each year, making Valentine’s Day the second largest card-sending holiday of the year. (An estimated 2.6 billion cards are sent for Christmas.) Women purchase approximately 85 percent of all valentines.

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Posted by on January 31, 2013 in history

 

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If I were U.S Government Employee I Might Worry

If I were a U.S government employee I might worry just a little bit, I’m not talking about the big wigs in Washington D.C who have more money than they know what do with I’m talking about the rank and file workers the ones who do the grunt work.Did you all know that Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has begun borrowing from the federal employee pension fund? Geithner is using it to keep the government going without passing the debt limit. Now Mr.Geithner says he will repay it when the debt limit is raised.Mr.Geithner state that other treasury secretary’s have done this which is true, But what Mr.Geithner left out that this is the second time in two years that this has been done.now here’s the twist back in Sept. 2012 the U.S Post Office U.S. Postal Service had warned that it could default if it is not given relief from its funding obligation to federal employee pension fund and we see where the post office is today. FERS is also suffering from rising costs, which are becoming burdensome. So in my opinion this is a fools game Mr.Geithner is playing with other people’s money and we all know it much easier to spend someone’s else’s money> So yeah I might be a little worried if I worked for the governmenttimothy geithner

 
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Posted by on January 16, 2013 in politics

 

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to cute

to cute

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in animals

 

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The Taxman coming for you !

The taxman is coming for you that is if Democrat’s get their way.The Democrat’s want $1 trillion in new tax’s Now one wonders just where they plan pull the money out of? Well the Democrat’s want to hit the top 1% again and corporations and Big oil company’s that’s what (D) Nancy Pelosi hinted  at on Sunday Now folks some of you may be cheering this on but just remember this the 1%, corporations and Big oil company’s didn’t get rich by laying down and giving up ! What will happen .. well lets face it is already happening  they will pull their money out of the country and /or raise prices on the products they sell to us , No one can tell me they are paying less for things now than say last year. Ms. Pelosi also bragged about how they the Democrat’s had already taken $716 billion in Medicare provider cuts. One wonders why more and more Doctors won’t take Medicare this may be part of it.

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Posted by on January 7, 2013 in politics

 

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Gun Control in Detroit

Gun control in Detroit seems to be not working just recently The Motor city released its crime report for 2012 and homicide rates are the highest they have been in two decades. This is what Detroit Mayor Dave Bing and Police Chief Chester Logan announced at a press conference. There were 411 homicides in 2012, 386 of that number were criminal homicides this is a 12% rise from 2011.

During the press conference, Police Chief Chester Logan went on to say this “These aren’t the average citizens we are talking about,” Logan said. “Many of these people are involved in nefarious walks of life, and there’s a difference between a law-abiding citizen who shoots a gun and a criminal or a thug who’s out there using one,” very well put Chief! I don’t think I could have said it better myself. It’s not your law-abiding citizen who owns a gun,or the guy down the street that is a hunter that is not the problem most of the time like the Chief said it’s the people are involved in nefarious walks of life., Having more gun,knife, baseball bat and even hammer laws are not going to stop a criminal or a thug who’s out there using one all it’s going to do is make it easier for criminals to rob and murder law-abiding citizens.

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Posted by on January 6, 2013 in Life, politics

 

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NASA space shuttle

January 5, 1972 – President Richard Nixon signed a bill approving $5.5 billion over six years to build and test the NASA space shuttle08pd0242

 
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Posted by on January 6, 2013 in history, politics

 

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