February 14th is Valentine’s Day (no kidding) but who is St. Valentine, the patron saint the holiday was named after. To this day it’s still a mystery.

There are three saints, all martyrs, named either Valentine or Valentinus.

One, named Valentine, married roman soldiers and their lovers in secret because the Emperor outlawed marriage for single soldiers because he thought they would fight better if they weren’t married.

Another story suggests Valentine helped Roman prisoners escape from their harsh treatment and was sent to prison himself. The story goes that he was visited by a young girl, possibly the jailer’s daughter, and Valentine sent the first greeting to her after he fell in love. Before his death it is said he wrote her a letter and signed it, 'From your Valentine.’

Whatever the story is St. Valentine is one of the most popular saints in England and France and obviously started in Rome.

In addition to the United States, Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France and Australia. The United States probably stared celebrating Valentine’s Day first as far back as the 1700’s.

Today according to history.com and the Greeting Card Association and estimated 1 billion Valentine ’s Day cards are sent each year. The surprising thing about all those cards is that 85% of them are purchased by women.

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