Happy St. Valentine’s Day!!
Valentine’s Day always makes me a little Romesick. Valentine’s Day has its roots deep in Italy, and so much of what we now associate with this holiday of love is deeply rooted in Roman history. St. Valentine lived in Rome and was martyred about 278 ad. But the iconography of Valentine’s Day is even more ancient.
Take Cupid — the Roman god of love and desire. He is everywhere! And Cupid can easily be confused with putti — naked, winged babies who are all over the place in Italian art and seem to be everywhere on Valentine’s Day. But they are part of an artistic tradition that is more than 2500 years old.
I bought this antique Florentine box from @vintagecollected a few weeks ago. So pretty! The image decoupaged on the top of the box is a print of a fresco from the House of the Vettii in Pompeii. This ancient piece of art shows little putti making perfume. There are three scenes in the actual fresco, but only two appear on my box: putti crushing something to make the oils, and then setting up shop to sell the perfumes. So if you give or receive a bottle of perfume today, it is part of an ancient tradition and a link to the past, too.
However you celebrate Valentine’s Day, may it be a celebration of love! 😘
Originally posted on Instagram. Are we connected on Instagram? If not, follow me! There’s a whole lot going on on IG!