Cupid’s Arrow –Good or Bad?

Avery Haley, Contributor

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Valentine’s Day, the day where you show love to your significant other or you find yourself up at one a.m., crying alone, and eating self-gifted chocolates. Valentine’s Day is usually a very bright and happy day for most people, but behind this happy day is a dark and brutal history which may explain your emotional dilemma.

Around February 13th to 15th the Romans had a festival known by the name, Lupercalia. To begin the festival, Roman priests would sacrifice a goat and a dog for purification. They would cut the goats hide into strips,  dip them in sacrificial blood,and take them onto the streets. They would take the blood soaked strips and slap women with them. Roman women were not alarmed. In fact, they believed that when being slapped with the hide they would become fertile the following year. The spiritually cleansed women would then place their names in a huge urn. Eligible bachelors would draw the name of a woman from the jar. The pair would be coupled for the entire festival. Many of the relationships didn’t last, while others ended in marriage. Not very romantic right?

Valentine greetings were popular as far back as the Middle Ages, but written Valentines didn’t begin to appear until after 1400. The oldest Valentine is still in existence today. It was a poem written in 1415 by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while imprisoned in the Tower of London. Now, the United States spends over $18 billion on cards,  chocolates, and many other gifts for their loved one with over 180 million cards being exchanged.

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Cupid’s Arrow –Good or Bad?