Bulgaria - Holidays and festivals
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Valentine’s Day – the story of the holiday

The tradition of celebrating Valentine’s Day, aka Valentine’s Day, came to us from the West. The lovers on this day people give each other gifts, tender, Valentines, and, of course, a Declaration of love. Interesting history of this holiday.

The history of Valentine’s Day

There is a beautiful legend about the origin of Valentine’s Day. According to this legend, Claudius II — the Roman Emperor who ruled in the third century ad, was a staunch opponent of unions because they interfered with his legions to conquer the country. Therefore, the Emperor issued a decree that forbade to marry. Priest Valentine, contrary to the decree, all the same continued to secretly marry lovers. For this he was thrown into prison, after which he was sentenced to death. The young daughter of the jailer, seeing the priest and hearing his story, loved it. Valentin said her affection. But as seeing it was not possible, the lovers communicated through correspondence. On 14 February 270 years, the day of his execution, the priest sent his lover last love note with the caption «Valentine».

In another version of the legend of the origin of St. Valentine’s day, the warden, where he sat Valentin for their “criminal” acts, accidentally discovered the healing abilities of the prisoner, and then led to your Valentine’s blind daughter Julia. In the terrible day of his execution Valentine wrote Julia a farewell love note. Having obtained her, the girl was found inside of a saffron yellow, and there was an unprecedented miracle she had an Epiphany.

Under the name Valentina is known for several early Christian saints and martyrs. One of them — Valentine was a Roman priest who was executed around 269 ad, Another famous Saint Valentine was the Bishop of Interamna. This Saint was famous for its miraculous healings. He was executed for something that drew people to the Christian faith of the son of the mayor. Maybe in the legend refers to this Saint. Romantic holiday on February 14 in the memory of the saints, established by Pope Gelasius I in 496 year.

Already in 1969, after the introduction of the reform of the Liturgy of St. Valentine was removed from the liturgical calendar of the Catholic Church (along with other Roman saints, information about the life of which is contradictory and unreliable). Catholic Church February 14, honors the memory of saints Cyril and Methodius. While the Orthodox Church celebrates the memory of the Roman presbyter Valentine 6 (19) July.

According to one legend, the roots of Valentine’s Day dates back to pagan times. Many believe that the “predecessor” of this feast was called the feast of Lupercalia – a festival of fertility and eroticism that were held in Ancient Rome in honor of the patron God of stud Faun (Luperci) and the goddess «feverish» love Juno Februata 15 February.

Young girls wrote love notes to the boys and put them in a special bowl for the draw. Man, wynosi this note, had to take care of it for the one who wrote it. Interestingly, men beat women on the street with whips that are made from the skin of a sacrificial goat. It was believed that this was to promote greater fertility of women, so with devotion they were set up under the cruel blows.

In 494 ad Pope Gelasius I “moved” the celebration of the Lupercalia 15 on 14 February. Thus, it coincided with the day honoring St. Valentine. Soon, however, the celebration of the Lupercalia had gone.

The celebration of Valentine’s Day in February is also associated with the beginning of the mating season of birds. It has long been thought that marriage at this time will make it a long and happy.

Pagan festival “Ivan Kupala”

Traditionally, the feast of St. Valentine came to our country from the West. However, celebrating, somewhat similar to the Roman Lupercalia, were anciently and in Russia. So we have from ancient times been celebrated famous Kupala day, which falls on July 7th, to be exact, on the night from the sixth to the seventh of July, or according to the old calendar, on the night of twenty third twenty fourth of June. A holiday dedicated to the day of the summer solstice and the pagan Slavic God of the sun Kupala. People celebrated the Sun, the maturity of summer, green mowing. Young people girded themselves with bands of flowers, and on his head wore wreaths. They danced and sang songs. Then, in connection with the adoption of Christianity in Russia, this pagan holiday was replaced by honoring the memory of John the Baptist, as the day of the Nativity of John the Baptist coincided with the pagan celebration of Midsummer. For this holiday called “Midsummer” as we know it today.

The memory of Saints Peter and Fevronia of Murom

July 8 (June 25, according to the old calendar) Orthodox Church honors the memory of Saints Peter and Fevronia of Murom — famous patrons of love and of family happiness.

However, mass-February 14th as a celebration of Valentine’s Day in the Old World, i.e. Europe, celebrated in the thirteenth century, whereas in America since 1777. Valentine’s day is a secular (not religious).

We congratulate You with St. Valentine’s Day and wish a simple human happiness, whose name is love! Always give your loved ones a charming smile, and then life will be even brighter!