Therefore, Pope Gelasius I decided to abolish this pagan holiday and purify the meaning of this day, establishing the cult of the patron saint of love and bringing forwards the date of the celebration by one day. That is why today Valentine’s Day is celebrated on 14th February. The aim was to associate 14th February with the commemoration of a Christian saint who represented the values of love and compassion.
The second theory is linked to the fact that this day also commemorates Saint Valentine of Terni, Christian bishop and martyr, who was executed in 273 after celebrating a wedding between Serapia, a gravely ill Christian woman, and Sabinus, a Roman legionary, in spite of her parents being opposed to the union.
According to another theory, Valentine’s Day’s roots are in nature itself. Since mid-February marks the beginning of mating season for birds, in the Middle Ages this day was dedicated to the celebration of lovers.
The most likely hypothesis, though, states that the origin of the celebration may be attributed to Geoffrey Chaucer, English writer and poet, who honoured the betrothal of Richard II of England and Anne of Bohemia with a poem “The Parliament of Fowls” in which he associated Cupid with Saint Valentine’s Day.