And I didn’t come up with some Tristan-and-Isolde or Héloise-and-Abelard moment. No.
Instead I came up with some claptrap about there being three Saint Valentines on a list drawn up in 496 by Pope Gelasius I and no one knows which one is the one this Day for Lovers was named after. None of them - martyrs all - seem a likely candidate to me. Nor do any of the four others mentioned since then.
That pagan feast seems to tie in neatly with one of the emblems of Valentine’s Day: Cupid, son of Venus and the god of desire, affection and erotic love in Roman mythology... which gives everyone a shot at the kind of love they’re interested in. And that’s about as far as you can get from the Roman Catholic Church and its martyred saints.
P.S. There’s a map somewhere on the French Internet that shows where you can find your unrequited love in Paris. You enter your desiderata - age, sex, other - and it will tell you where to find someone of similar inclinations.
Ah, these French. So linked up.
Cimetière St. Vincent, Montmartre
|Put a love lock on the Pont des Arts|
and toss the key in the Seine