St. Valentine: Love Never Ends
Italy wins, hands down, when it comes to Valentine’s day. Not only do many of the legends derive from Roman history, but there is so much to love in Italy! We thought we would share a little more about Saint Valentine and Cupid - and how you can share some love with a special person in your life!
San Valentino: Who was he and how did he became famous for protecting love? In 273 A.D. Valentino was already pretty famous for his healing powers, he had even healed the son of Crotone, a famous Athenian orator. It wasn’t until he married Sabino and Serepia that Valentino also became known as the symbol for the protection of lovers. Theirs was most definitely a forbidden love, as one was Christian and the other was Pagan. When Serepia became ill with tuberculosis Sabino called on Valentino, who lifted Serepia from her deathbed and united the two eternally. Awh, Love Never Ends! Why do we celebrate on February 14th? Unfortunately that is not the date of the infamous wedding, it is the date that San Valentino was beheaded as a sacrifice to the gods by those who did agree with San Valentino’s beliefs. San Valentino is buried on a hill in Terni, Italy, where now the church of San Valentino stands. Love is Stronger than Hate!
Cupido: also belongs to the Romans - in this case Roman mythology. Cupid is the son of Venus, the goddess of Love. Despite Cupid’s mother’s jealousy of Psyche, Cupid married her. But he had one condition, that she could never look at him. Cupid visited Pysche only at night, so she couldn’t see him. But, Pysche’s sisters convinced her to look at Cupid, so she lit a lamp one night to see him. And that was it, the love story was over once she saw him, Cupid left her (side note: don’t listen to your sisters!).
Pysche was desperate and searched in vain for Cupid. She happened upon Venus’ temple and Venus, now even less impressed with Pysche, gave her numerous difficult tasks. The last one was to deliver a small box to the underworld and get some beauty from Prosperine. And, under no circumstance, to open the box. But, curiosity was Pysche’s Achilles’ tendon, and alas, she opened the box. There was nothing in the box, but deadly slumber (yes, an early version of Sleeping Beauty).
Cupid’s love was true, and he too was desolate without Pysche. He came upon her lifeless body, and forgave her for disobeying him. He swept the deadly slumber back into the box. In the end, the gods made Pysche a goddess too. Yes, they did live happily ever after! So, if you are hit by one of Cupid’s arrows, do not despair, you too will fall in love!
You can give yourself some love, or give someone else a little love through a trip (virtual!) to Italy. Our Cultural Experiences are mini-escapes to Italy to enjoy the food, language, history, art, natural beauty and more. Each experience is a themed trip for you to enjoy from the comfort of your home - in privacy (no video or mic).
How to learn more or sign up: visit our website, learn about upcoming Experiences and sign up, all right here: https://www.italianoforyou.com/italian-classes
Don't miss our episode on Feb. 22 when we go to Venice - now if that isn't a romantic destination what is?
Hope you can join - and hope you have a lovely San Valentino day!