To find the starting point of the story that tells the origin of the Lovers' Day, you have to go to Rome, right into the cave where the famous she-wolf suckled the even more famous Romulus and Remus.
Right there, towards the middle of February, the ancient Romans performed propitiatory rites to keep wolves away from the fields, since in that period they were preparing for sowing.
It was pagan ceremonies and celebrations not quite... elegant, animal sacrifices, bloodshed and licentious practices.
Pope Gelasius, in 494, wanted to give us a cut and "Christianized" the anniversary: from that moment on, the cult of St. Valentine would follow.
Valentino was a Roman bishop who, it is said, made the mistake, in an era of persecution against Christians, of marrying a Christian girl with a pagan legionary.
Valentino, for this fact, was imprisoned, tortured and beheaded.
It was February 14, 273.
A second version wants instead that the Saint became famous already in life as protector and "consultant" of couples in crisis, who was able to reconcile and lead back to falling in love, praying for them and giving them a red rose, a flower that he adored above all.
As far as more recent history is concerned, in the Middle Ages the day of lovers was celebrated in mid-February since the courtship and mating of birds began right then.
The exchange of cards, with love phrases, the so-called Valentine, however, dates back to the nineteenth century.
Here in our laboratory we have drawn up, for fun, the ranking of our favorite lovers.
In fourth place were classified the precious and regal figures of the famous Kiss, by the painter Gustav Klimt. Imaginary figures placed in an unreal space, but which testify to the power of a concrete and earthly gesture.
In third place Romeo and Juliet, protagonists of the most famous love story in the world, unhappy and unfortunate, but in our eyes extraordinarily courageous and revolutionary.
Silver medal for the sweethearts of the French illustrator Peynet, who gave them the name of Valentino and Valentina and brought the delicacy and sweetness of his drawings around that world just emerged from the horrors of the Second World War.
And in the absolute first place he, a single, but in love with life: Snoopy, the hound of the unforgettable comic strips of the Peanuts, drawn by Schulz.
He is our little hero of today, our ironic and light-hearted Valentino.