Why is Valentine's Day on February 14?

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It was based on the date of the death of Saint Valentine (Feb 14) and the Festival of Lupercalia (Feb 15). The Emperor hated the festival for military reasons. The Church disapproved of it too, but for other reasons...and the Church was a bit more "subtle" in their approach to trying to get rid of it. Having their celebration a day earlier than the festival was a clever idea! Church policy in dealing with the ancient religions included a strategy of incorporating, rather than just banning, the "old-time religions". And it proved to be an effective strategy. Many contemporary church rituals and holidays are actually based on earlier pagan celebrations. "Draw a circle around them and include them in" was the church's policy. So the church essentially co-opted the old pagan Festival and turned it into to a religious holiday celebrating the Christian virtues of love and marriage. Like so many other holidays, Valentine's Day was eventually co-opted again, this time by "commercial ... more
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