History of Valentines ~ Pre-Christian era
In ancient Rome, 13, 14 and 15 February were celebrated as Lupercalia, a pagan fertility festival. This seems to be the basis for a celebration of love on this date. It was marked in a subtly different way in those days, however. According to Noel Lenski, classics professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder, speaking in the National Geographic, young men would strip naked and use goat- or dog-skin whips to spank the backsides of young women in order to improve their fertility; an early IVF, if you will. More info can be found Here from The Telegraph.