LOVE February - Thoughtful Thursday: Who was St Valentine?

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Photo credit: Ladyheart from
Everyone knows that St Valentine’s Day is the 14th February but did you know that there have been at least three different Saint Valentines.
The first official Saint Valentine's Day was declared on 14th of February by Pope Galasius in 496, in memory of a 3rd century martyred priest in Rome. We do not know if whether Pope Galasius was honouring this 3rd century priest or whether it was one of two other martyred priests associated with the 14th of February. One was Bishop of Interamna and the other lived and died in Africa. Nothing further is known about these two Saint Valentines and it is the priest in Rome that has become the most widely celbrated of the three.
It is believed that the young priest rose to distinction after betraying Emperor Claudius in 270 AD by conducting illegitimate wedding ceremonies in the capital. Emperor Claudius claimed that married men made poor soldiers and decreed that all marriages of younger citizens would be outlawed. Bishop Valentine, however, maintained that marriage was part of God's plan and purpose for the world. He continued to conduct marriages in secret.
His success gained him unwelcome notoriety, this became Bishop Valentine's downfall. He was jailed and eventually beheaded, but not before he fell in love with the jailer's daughter. It is thought that on the evening of his execution the bishop passed her a note which read "from your Valentine". This story has blossomed into the defining tradition of Valentine's Day. An estimated one billion cards are sent each year, making it the second largest card-sending holiday of the year behind Christmas.

LOVE February Competition - Fourteen days of fabulous prizes!
Tell the team at Dormouse and The Teapot what's your ideal St Valentine Day surprise . Post your answer in the comments section by clicking on comments below, make sure you leave a contact email or twitter name otherwise if you win we won't be able to send you your prize!

Photography by Jonathan Buckley
Today's lucky winner will win a beautiful heart shaped bird feeder from Sarah Raven Kitchen & Garden Ltd (0845 092 0283). Grow the good life with their range of seeds, bulbs, plants, gardening and kitchen kit. Everything you need for a beautiful and productive garden

All winners will go in a draw on 14 February to win a fantastic vintage tea set for two from
Remember there will be fourteen days of competitions, you may enter the competitions as many times as you wish over the fortnight but you may only win one prize.

Sorry UK entrants only.
Dormouse and The Teapot use a randomiser to select the winner.
This competition is now closed.

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