At the beginning of the 21st Century monsters still roam the remote, and sometimes not so remote, corners of our planet. It is our job to search for them. The Centre for Fortean Zoology [CFZ] is - we believe - the largest professional, scientific and full-time organisation in the world dedicated to cryptozoology - the study of unknown animals. Since 1992 the CFZ has carried out an unparalleled programme of research and investigation all over the world. Since 2009 we have been running the increasingly popular CFZ Blog Network, and although there has been an American branch of the CFZ for over ten years now, it is only now that it has a dedicated blog.

Friday, 14 February 2014

ST VALENTINE'S DAY

Today is St Valentine's Day, but we do not know anything really about St Valentine, who is commemorated on it.  In fact, there are two saints of the name whose feast is on this day, but it is possible that they were originally the same person.  The supposed skull of St Valentine is in the Basilica of Santa Maria de Cosmedin in Rome.  The supposed body is in Whitefriars Street Church in Dublin.

Why this date came to be associated with lovers is obscure.  Chaucer alludes to St Valentine's Day as the day birds begin to mate, but he may be referring to the feast of another St Valentine.  
In Slovenia February 14th is said to be the day birds propose marriage to each other.  The practice of sending Valentine cards anonymously through the mail dates from the 19th Century or perhaps the 18th.  A superstition had already existed that the first person you saw on St Valentine's Day was the one you would marry.  The wife of Samuel Pepys, before she married him, had some painters working in the house in 1662.  For fear that she would see one of them and have to marry a painter, she kept her hands over her eyes throughout the day.


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