The first true Valentine card was probably written by a young Frenchman, Charles, Duke of Orleans. Charles was captured by the English and imprisoned in the Tower of London in 1415.
He felt very lonely, and to fight his loneliness he started writing love poems to his wife in France. His Valentines are now kept in the British Museum.
In 1537, King Henry VIII officially recognized St Valentines Day, which is ironic because he wasnt the most romantic of men – he had six wives (and two of them were executed)!
The early valentines were handmade, and young people spent hours composing their own poems. In 1784, the first Valentine Encyclopedia was published under the title of: The New English Valentine Writer, or the High Road to Love, for both Sexes, Containing a Complete Set of Valentines, which the Young may read without Blushing, and those of Riper Years find Pleasant and Entertaining.