Saturday 13 February 2010

My Offensive Valentine

Not every Victorian was a fan of Valentine's day:


Sir - If Mercury condescends to help Cupid for one day in the year, I think Mercury should not do so at the expense of regular customers. On this morning of St. Valentine, as usual, the postman has delivered at my house a dozen more or less silly and offensive letters. As usual, also, on this Saint's day, he has not delivered my copy of The Times which, sent from Printing-house-square itself, arrives by the first post on all other days in the year with delightful regularity. Now, what is breakfast without one's newspaper. Even a genial mind is soured by such a void; but on this of all days throughout the year, when one was hungering to know what Ministers proposed to do for the advancement of learning in Ireland and for suitors in England delay was a refined cruelty, and one went into town in helpless ignorance, an object of mingled pity and wonder. I ask the Postmaster-General, on grounds of justice and of mercy, whether daily newspapers should be delayed in the post for the sake of this stupendous annual folly - these maudlin, impertinent love-letters, which might be kept back for a week, or, still better, pitched in the Thames by cartloads without hurt to anybody?
I am, Sir, yours,

The Times, 15 February, 1873


  1. I love this! One of the funniest things I've ever read. Thanks!

  2. This is beautiful!
    Puts Valentine's celebrations into perspective,