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The Legends Of Valentine's Day (情人节的传说)  

2008-02-17 22:13:45|  分类: 第二课堂 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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The Legends Of Valentine's Day

February 14 is Valentine's Day.It is celebrated as a lovers' holiday today,with the giving of candy,flowers,or other gifts between couples in love.Valentine's Day has roots in several different legends that have found their way to us through the ages.

In Rome it's said that it originated in 5th Century as a tribute to St.Valentine,a Catholic bishop.

For eight hundred years prior to the establishment of Valentine's Day,the Romans had practiced a pagan celebration in mid-February commemorating young men's rite of passage to the god Lupercus.The celebration featured a lottery in which young men would draw the names of teenage girls from a box.The girl assigned to each young man in that manner would be his female companion during the remaining year.

In an effort to do away with the pagan festival.Pope Gelasius ordered a slight change in the lottery.Instead of the names of young women,the box would contain the names of saints.Both men and women were allowed to draw from the box,and the game was to emulate the ways of the saint they drew during the rest of the year.Needless to say,many of the young Roman men were not too pleased with the rule Changes.

Instead of the pagan god Lupercus,the Church looked for a suitable patron saint of love to take his place.They found an appropriate choice in Valentine,who,in AD270 had been beheaded 3 by Emperor Claudius.

Claudius had determined that married men made poor soldiers.So he banned marriage from his empire.But Valentine would secretly marry young men that came to him.When Claudius found out about Valentine,he first tried to convert him to paganism.But Valentine reversed the strategy,trying instead to convert Claudius.When he failed,he was stoned and beheaded.

During the days that Valentine was imprisoned,he fell in love with the blind daughter of his jailer.His love for her,and his great faith,managed to miraculously heal her from her blindness before his death.Before he was taken to his death,he signed a farewell message to her,"From your Valentine."The phrase has been used on his day ever since.

Although the lottery for women had been banned by the church,the mid-February holiday in commemoration of St.Valentine was stilled used by Roman men to seek the affection of women.It became a tradition for the men to give the ones they admired handwritten messages of affection,containing Valentine's name.

Another Valentine was an Italian bishop who lived at about the same time,AD 200.He was imprisoned because he secretly married couples,contrary to the laws of the Roman emperor.Some legends say he was burned at the stake.

February 14 was also a Roman holiday,held in honor of a goddess.Young men randomly chose the name of a young girl to escort to the festivities.The custom of choosing a sweetheart on this date spread through Europe in the Middle Ages,and then to the early American colonies.Throughout the ages,people also believed that birds picked their mates on February 14!

In AD 496 Saint Pope Gelasius I named February 14 as"Valentine's Day".Although it's not an official holiday,most Americans observe this day.

The first Valentine card grew out of this practice.The first true Valentine card was sent in 1415 by Charles,duke of Orleans,to his wife.He was imprisoned in the Tower of London at the time.

Cupid,another symbol of the holiday,became associated with it because he was the son of Venus,the Roman god of love and beauty.He is represented by the image of a young boy with bow and arrow.Cupid often appears on Valentine cards.

Whatever the odd mixture of origins,St.Valentine's Day is now a day for sweethearts.It is the day that you show your friend or loved one tht you care.You can send candy to someone you think is special.Or you can send roses,the flower of love.

情人节的传说

2月14日是"情人节"。如今它被人们作为情侣的节日来庆祝,相爱的人之间互赠糖果、鲜花或其他礼物。关于"情人节"的来历,有许多不同的传说经历了漫长的岁月,一直流传至今。

在罗马,据说它源自于5世纪,是为了纪念天主教的主教圣·瓦伦丁。

在"情人节"确立前800年,罗马人就已经有了一项在2月中旬举行的异教徒庆典活动,年轻人通过庆典来纪念卢帕克斯神。这项庆典的特点是进行抽签,让年轻的男子从盒子里抽取十几岁少女的名字。通过这种方式分配给每一位年轻男子的女孩就成了他那一年的女伴。

为了废除这个异教的节日,罗马教皇盖拉西厄斯命令抽签活动必须稍作改动:盒子里面装的不再是年轻女孩的名字,而是圣徒的名字。男人和女人都可以从盒子里抽签,游戏的目的是让他们在本年度里仿效他们所抽到的圣徒的行为方式。不用说,很多罗马的年轻人并不喜欢这种规则的改变。

教会决定寻找一位更适合的爱的守护神来代替异教的卢帕克斯神。他们发现瓦伦丁是是一个非常恰当的人选,他于公元270年被克劳迪亚斯王斩首。

克劳迪亚斯王坚信已婚男人是无用的战士,因此在他的王国内禁止结婚。但是瓦伦丁却秘密地帮助那些来找他的年轻人主持婚礼。当克劳迪亚斯王发现瓦伦西的行为后,他先是试图使瓦伦丁皈依异教,然而瓦伦丁却将计就计,反过来要使克劳迪亚斯王改信基督教。他失败了,于是被乱石砸死并被砍了头。

瓦伦丁在被囚禁的日子里,与监狱长那盲眼的女儿相爱了。在他死前,他对她的爱和极度的忠诚竟然奇迹般地治好了她的眼睛。在他被押赴刑场之前,他在给她的诀别信中,签下了"你的瓦伦丁"。从那以后这句话一直被沿用至今。

虽然抽签得女人的活动已经被教会禁止,但罗马的男人依旧利用二月中旬这个纪念瓦伦丁的节日来追求女人的爱情。男人将他们手写的爱情字条签上瓦伦丁的名字,然后送给他们所爱慕的女人,这逐渐演变成了一种传统。

另一位瓦伦丁是一位意大利主教,生活在同一时代,大约公元200年。他被投进监狱是因为他秘密地帮别人主持婚礼,这违反了当时罗马帝国的法律。有一些传说说他是被绑在火刑柱上烧死的。

2月14日也是罗马人为表示对女神的敬意而庆祝的节日。年轻的男子随便挑选一个年轻女子的名字,该女子便陪他度过这个节庆。中世纪时,在这个日子里选择意中人的习俗传遍了整个欧洲,然后又传到了早期的美洲殖民地。千百年来,人们一直相信鸟儿在2月14日选择配偶。

在公元496年,圣徒罗马教皇盖拉西厄斯1世把2月14日命名为"瓦伦丁节"(情人节)。虽然这不是一个官方节日,但大数美国人都很重视这一天。

第一张情人节卡片就是在这种情况下诞生的。1415年,奥尔良公爵查尔斯将第一张真正的情人节卡片送给了他的妻子。那时,他正被关在伦敦塔内。

丘比特是这个节日的另一个象征,之所以与这个节日有联系,是因为他是罗马爱情和美丽的女神维纳斯的儿子。他被描述成一个带着弓和箭的小男孩的形象。丘比特常常出现在情人节卡片上。

无论渊源有多么复杂,"情人节"如今已是情侣们的节日。这是你用来表达你对朋友和爱人的关心的日子。你可以把糖果送给对你来说很特别的人,也可以送爱情的花朵--玫瑰。

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