Another story claims Valentine was killed for trying to help Christians escape Roman prisons. When he was imprisoned, he fell in love with a girl and sent her the first Valentine, a letter he signed "From your Valentine."
Like many holidays, Valentine's Day also has pagan roots. "Others claim that the Christian church may have decided to place St. Valentine's feast day in the middle of February in an effort to 'Christianize' the pagan celebration of Lupercalia," according to one history. "Celebrated at the ides of February, or February 15, Lupercalia was a fertility festival dedicated to Faunus, the Roman god of agriculture, as well as to the Roman founders Romulus and Remus."
Today the holiday is celebrated in the United States, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France and Australia.
Americans have been exchanging cards since the early 18th century. Hallmark began selling Valentine’s Day cards since 1913. The company estimates more than 110 million cards are exchanged for the holiday each year.
If you’re looking for something to do for Valentine’s Day in Atlanta, browse our list of things to do: