The Eagle. (Hennessey, Okla.), Vol. 3, No. 46, Ed. 1 Thursday, February 11, 1904 Page: 2 of 8
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TRUE ORIGIN OF
ST. VALENTINE'S DAY
A Very Ancient Festival. It
Was First Observed by the
Pagans — Always a Time
For Display of Sentiment.
It U thi> fashion nowadays to speak
cf many <>lil mmlimig that still sur
vive, .lUhonsli much diminished, as if
thf-y wit" In ill int.nits and purpose*
already dead HI. Valentine's day is
nowhero observed, ii is true, as much
as it was 2(10 yeai'h ago, nor even as
much as it was in the early recollee-
ti in of tome of tli" diler generation of
the pr 'sent. ye>. it is very far from be-
ing entincl h i |mm uUar and popular
holiday In some of the rural distiets
of ICiirtl.tnd il is .itill celebrated with
nmcli iiiaiut (Mi-lily to tradition, and
ev.'u in this Miinlry certain of its well
known featinc* are not likely to i>e
wholly ilmndoned, if ever, for many
ye.irs to come Indeed, the social
prophet insy well (iii"3tlon whether St.
V Menliim's d.i) may not rather regain
much lhat n has lost through the at-
tri'lon w lline mil change by the naiu-
ral reaction Uial follows all positive
niovenicnls The tendency toward re-
newed respect f.n tome social Insti-
tutions if tli • past that have fallen
into partial d -sueimle is rather mark-
ed The dominant instinct of the
twentieth entury tin; far seems to be
conservative as well as progressive.
Not very long ami it was thought
that SI Valentine's day was given over
almost absolutely Id the sorry wits
mid their patrons who made it a con
YCitienrc for vulvar lampooning and
anonymous libel, nut even then the
pretty sentiment belonging to it had
not been altogether lost, and since
then il lias steadily revived. The proof
of the assertion is In the fact that
there is now a -reater demand for
printed Valentin 's of real poetic and
frtlsllc in -rit than ever before, aud
that fIn> ■ of tin- c'leip. illiterate and
Malicious type ue comparatively lit-
tle Ronght after
8 i much that Is within the reach of
■ II has b • in written about St. Valen-
cadla. This was a festival of seven
.lays, beginning in the ide3 of Feb
ruarj. or on the 14th or 15th of that
month. It was called Lupercalia after
the wolf, lupus, which is supposed to
be associated in some way with Pan,
and was often represented by the an-
cients as a smybol of light and the
course of the seasons. Pan was the
killer of wolves and- the protector of
the shepherds who dwelt upon Mount
Palatine before Romulus aud Remus
built their city there. By some, the
name of the festival Is supposed also
to bear relation to the legend of the
miraculous suckling of the Roman
twins by a she wolf in a cave near
this spot. Part of the unspeakable
mysteries of the Lupercalia was cele-
brated in such a cave. But much of
this inference is pure after-thought.
It does not affect in the least the
theory that the festival was begun as
a recognition of the prodigious powers
Choice by Lots.
During the Lupercalia it was the
custom of the male celebrants to draw
from n box the names of young women
end girls, possession of whom was thus
determined by chance. It was the
policy of llie early Church to adapt to
its own system those customs of the
pagans which it could not extirpate.
This method of mating or betrothal re-
sisted prohibition and even substitu-
tion. It is related that St. Francis
do Sales and ither Christian pastors
put the nam- s of saints on the lots to
be drawn, in the place of those of
maidens, and charged the young men
who recoived them to imitate those
saints throughout the year. But while
they may blue tried very hard to obey
this injunction. It appears that the lot-
drawing, not In honor of Februata
Juno, but in honor of that which she
personified, continued Jn secret. The
In England and Scotland and the
countries colonized by them St. Val-
entine's day retained all through the
Middle Ages and down almost to the
present a more typical character than
it did elsewhere. In Austria and Hun-
gary it is a festival of tlowers rather
than of love billets. Young girls who
wish for a husband cast flowers into
the Danube, and if they are borne
steadily down the stream, without
meeting with serious obstruction, the
omen is held to be auspicious of
speedy marriage. In some parts of
France the eve of St. Valentine's dav-
is Called the Feast of the Torches;
but the celebration, which, indeed, is
sometimes held on the first Sunday of
Lent, has, apparently, a closer his-,
torical relation to that period of ab-
negation than to the patron of love's
courtship. The torches that are used
aro made of twisted straw, and are
brandished in the air by those who
carry thorn, while at the same time
peculiar rustic dances are performed.
A Philological Theory.
Antiquarians have drawn from phil-
ology a means of explaining in an alto-
gether different way the name of the
festival of St. Valentine. It is well
known that in many languages one
letter of the alphabet may easily be
substituted for another through popu-
lar error in the spelling of particular
words. It is suspected by some that
the name is primarily derived from
the Latin "vale," which is equivalent
to our "farewell," a salutation that
was placed at the end of letters; hut
a large number more ingeniously find
its source in the Latin "valens." vali-
ant, gallant. According to them, in
passing from the Latin into the Nor-
man French this word took a "g" in
lieu of the "v," and ij logical develop-
ment of it was the noun "galantin." a
lover of women. As gallantry and
of the girls upon a young man that
she calls hers. By this means each
has two valentines—but the man
sticks faster to the valentine that is
fallen to him than the valentine to
whom he is fallen."
"Singing Cupids are thy choristers
and thy persecutors, and instead of
the crazier the mystical arrow is
borne before thee."
"In an old English ballad, the lasses
are directed to pray cross-legged to
St. Valentine for luck. In some parts
of England the poorer classes of
children array themselves fantastic-
ally, and visit the houses of the
Good morning- to you, Valentine,
Pur! your locks as 1 do mine.
Two before and throe behind.
Good morrow to you, Valentine.
A Poetical Version.
A poetic - picture of this custom is
found in Poor Robin's Almanack for
the year 1757:
This day brlslit Phoebus enters Pisces.
The maids wiU have good score of kisses,
I-' ii- always when the sun comes there
Valentine's Day is drawing :ie;ir.
And both the men and maids incline
'I'o chuse them each a Valentine;
And if n man sets one lie loves,
II-- gives tier first a pair of gloves;
And, by the way remember this.
'In seal the favor with a kiss.
This kiss begets more love and then
That love begets a kiss again.
i'r;il this trade the man doth catch.
And then he iloth propose the match;
The woman's willing. Iho' site's shy,
Phe gives the man this soft reply.
"I'll not resolve one thing or other,
T"ntit 1 first consult my mother."
When she says so. 'tis half n grant, _
And may be taken far consent.
Many superstitions were embroid-
ered on the original St. Valentino tra-
dition, and some of thein are held in
honor even to this day. One is found
in this most curious extract from a
young woman's diary, published in
an old-time English periodical:
"Last Friday was St. Valentine's
Day and the night before I got five
hay leaves and pinned four of I hem
p.: 4^%^" i
mm % £*£§&
.... . •/.„ , *
••THE MARAUDERS"—Louis Prion.
linen lay bat uiy article upon It
hiU.-.I iieces , inly be only a reminder
of that which i already known It
has been the theme of numberless
jioet.s md antiquarians. After all.
nothing better expresses the spirit of
this festival . nice, upon the extension
of Christianity, il assumed its modern
character, than the lines of that fresh
voiced ICnglish poet, the Rev. John
Donne, who w is c iniemporaneous with
Hall, V iten whose day tills Is;
All till! Ill- is Illy ilnji SO.
And .it tli.- In pine i borlsters
And idler ha.) :i - thy parishioners:
Thou marrv1 -I I- ei> year
The Ivi i lark -mi th" grave whispering
th it neglects Ida life for
The household iii J with the red stom-
Thou male...I th-- 1.1 i M.lrd spe*d ns soon
As doth ihe nol.l iia n or the Iwlojron
This lay moie. rti.s-i fntty than ever shine.
This lav win. Ii might enllanie th> -.-If.
The germ of the celebration of St.
Valentino's day Is found In nature It-
self It was first a pagan tribute to
the fecundity of the earth aud of man,
personified iu Pan and Juno and there
is reason to believe that Its origin
was identical with that of a Pelasgian
festival, observed in Latlum before the
time of Romulus and Remus, and
brought 'hither by Evande* from Ar-
Church could not do otherwise than
tolerate the custom, when the name
of a patron saint was substituted by
popular fancy for that of Juno.
There is no clear account of how
St. Valentine came to be made the
bishop of the diocese of love, which
Donne so prettily describes. There
are several St. Valent.nos, and it is
not even known to a certainty which
of these owns the invisible mitre.
The one who died a martyr at Rome
| under Claudius is, however, most spo-
! ken of in this connection. Some
authorities say that he was the bishop
! of a material diocese, and others that
I he was only a presbyter. Wheatley
writes that lie "was a man of most
admirable parts, aud so tamous for
his charity and love that the choos-
j Ing of valentines upon his festival
took rise from thence." In this ex-
planation, however, the cause is evi-
dently mistaken for the effect. The
custom of choosing valentines was
already established, and chancing,
through its derivation from the pagan
festival, to fall upon the ides of Feb-
ruary, In which also occurred either
the birth or the martyrdom of St.
Valentine, the appropriation of the
name to that custom was most nat-
ural in view of his character.
valiauce, in another sense, are syn-
onymous, it was easy for "galatln"
to become "valantan" or "valantin."
It is pleasant to leave all these con-
jectures aside after simply passing
them in review, and to determine,
merely for the delectable purposes
of the imagination, that we will join
with Charles I.amb and other most
worthy dreamers in regarding St. Val-
entine as .a real bishop, who has a
very charming mission in connection
with the lovo affairs of humanity.
Thus does the inimitable Lamb apos-
trophize him; "Like unto thee, as-
suredly, there is no mitred father in
the calendar. Thou comest attended
with thousands and ten thousands
little Loves, and the air is
" 'Rruaht with the kiss of rustling wines '
The writer oftenest quoted for a
characteristic description of the old
manner of observing the right of St.
Valentine is Misson, a French travel-
er. "An equal number of maids and
men get together," he says; "each
writes their true or some feigned
name upon separate billetR, which
they roll up aud draw by way of lots,
the maids taking the men's billets and
the men the maids; so that each of
the young men lights upon the girl
that he calls his valentine, and each
to the four corners of my pillow, and
the fifth to the middle; and then, if
I dreamt of my sweetheart Betty
said we should be married before the
year was out. But to make it more
sure, I boiled an egg hard, and took
out the yonk and filled it with salt;
| and when I went to bed. eat it shell
and all. without speaking or drinking
| after it. We also wrote our lovers'
names upon bits of paper, and rolled
■ them up in clay, and put them into
water, and the first that rose up was
to be our Valentine. Would you think
I it?—Mr. Blosson was my man. I
lav abed and shut my eyes all the
| morning till he came to our house;
' lor I would not have seen another
man before him for all the world."
Gay, the poet, has placed in the
mouth of a country lass the well-
known tradition that the first person
whom one meets on Volentlne's day
is to become one's spouse. She sings;
Last Valentine, the day when nirds of
Their paramours by mutual chirpings
I early rose Just nt the break of day
Before the sun had chased the'stars
A-fleld I went, amid Ihe morning dpw
To milk my kine (for so should house-
Thee tirst I spied—and the first swain
In spite of fortune shall our true love hs.
Convicts Tunnel to Freedom.
Thirty convicts recently escaped
from the Nikolosk-Ussuri jail. In Si-
beria, by driving a tunnel 180 feet
long under the building.
Snuff Boxes for Museum.
Thirteen snuffboxes in agate and
jasper, ornamented with gold and pre-
cious stones, and formerly the prop-
erty of Frederick the Great, have
been presented by the kaiser to the
Formic Acid a Stimulant.
The Journal des Debate recites ex-
periments with formic acid, a secre-
tion of anls. Eight to ten drops of
the acid taken three or four times a
('.ay had a marked effect in stimulat-
ing muscular activity, which might
be continued a long time without re-
sultant fatigue. "That tired feeling"
8lso disappears under the influence of
Error of Telegrapher.
A recent cable from London to
Montreal, reporting the speech of an
English visitor to the latter city, con-
siderably hurt the feelings of Cana-
dians by stating that Montreal was
"the most depraved" city. A later
telegram, however, soothed the ruf-
fled citizens by informing them that
the words quoted should have read
"the worst paved city."
Voices Made to Order.
Voices made ti; order are the latest
things in surgery. Actual operations
have demonstrated that the larynx or
vocal box can be successfully removed
and the patient may recover. In order
to restore speech to tha patient an
artificial larynx and vocal chords are
provided. The voice artificially pro-
duced Is Incapable of inflection, but,
although it is a monotone, the patient
is perfectly able to carry on a conver-
Gratitude Well Expressed.
Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., Feb. 8th.- —
Mr. C. L. Smith, painter and decora-
tor, whose home is at 309 Anne street,
this city, makes the following state-
"I was laid up with some kind of
pains. Some said it was Lumbago,
others Sciatica, and others again
Rheumatism. A few of my friends
suggested that it was lead poison,
but whatever it was it gave me a
great deal of pain in fact, almost
completely crippled inc. I iiad to use
two eanes to walk about and even
then it was a very painful task.
"A friend advised me to try Dodd's
Kidney Pills and I began the treat-
ment. After i had used the first box
i was able to throw away one of the
canes and was considerably improv-
ed. The second box straightened me
up so that I could go about"free from
pain without any assistance and very
soon after i was completely cured,
well and happy, without a pain or an
ache. Dodd's Kidney Pills seemed to
go right to the spot In my case and
they will always iiave my greatest
Adders Infest Island.
The Prussian island of Ruegen, In
the Baltic, is infected with adders.
Last year 1,243 of these poisonous
snakes were killed and bounty col-
lected on them.
RED CROSS BALL HLCTK
Should be in every 1 lomo. A*k yonr groeer
for it. Largo 2 < 7. package ouly 5 ceuta.
A turn for the bettor—the roulette
Mr*. WIiifIow'h Soothing Syrnp.
foreblldreB Uethlng, iftena thegurna, reoncM In-
ilarmnatiou, allays pain, cures wlud colic. 2T>ca bottle.
While a blacksmith may have many
virtues he must have at least one vise.
More Flexible and Lasting,
won't shake out or blow out; by usin^
Detiauce Starch you obtain better renult*
thnn possible with any other brand aud
one-third more for .same money.
Many «*i man is on the level and yet
hits an up-hill tiiue of it.
Piso's Cure cannot be too highly spok<;n of na
aroutfh cure.—j. W. O'Uiuen, A:ll Third Avh.,
N., Minneapolis, Minn., Jan. 0, i'juo.
Wise is the man w ho doesn't write
a truthful story of his life.
Tt'oslnfe nml Itlllion Dollar Qrnas.
The two pi-en test fodder plants on
earth, one sood for 14 tons hay and the
other 80 tons green fodder per acre.
Grows everywhere, so does Victoria
Rape, yielding- 60.000 lbs. sheep and
swine food per acre.
JrST skn'd 10c in stamps to the
John A. Salzor Seed t'o., I^a Crosse,
Wis., and n-ceive in return their big
catalog and lots of farm seed samples.
<W. N. U.)
It doesn't take a contortionist to pat
himself on the back.
How's This ?
"Wo orrer One Hundred imiiara llrward for any
ca*«j < f < Hturrh that cunn. i he cure ti l y ilali •
Y .1. cm M.V & CO., Toledo, O.
We. th< under*,-in'<i. Jia.\•* kimwu F. Cheney
for fite iMM If. year*, unit believe him perfectly lion*
orMit'e In all iiUhinct-K traii^u-ilon* ami financially
able to carry out any obligatlonR ina<le l>y blsflrtn.
\Vai,I IM . KINV \N & Mahvi.S,
Wholesale Dru nrt*ti>, Toledo. O.
HaM'n Catarrh Cure 1h taken Internally, acting
dlretHy upon the Mood and inucoun surface of ihe
BVHti-ai. I (-*tluinnlalM aent free, l'rlce <5 ccnts per
bottle. Sold by all i>rUKKl*tn.
Take ll.iU'a Family 1'llla for constipation.
Th* world's production of rubber
was two years ago almost equally
divided between Africa and South
America. Now the A ma ron region
produces three fifths of It.
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Hutchinson, J. E. The Eagle. (Hennessey, Okla.), Vol. 3, No. 46, Ed. 1 Thursday, February 11, 1904, newspaper, February 11, 1904; Hennessey, Oklahoma. (https://gateway.okhistory.org/ark:/67531/metadc94664/m1/2/: accessed May 24, 2019), The Gateway to Oklahoma History, https://gateway.okhistory.org; crediting Oklahoma Historical Society.