The first mention of Valentine’s Day as a celebration of romantic love dates all the way back to 1382 when Geoffrey Chaucer penned his ‘Parlement of Foules’ and that well known verse “Roses are red, violets are blue” had its first outing in 1590 in Edmund Spenser’s ‘Faerie Queene’:
“She bath’d with roses red, and violets blew,
And all the sweetest flowres, that in the forrest grew.”
Nowadays, Valentine’s Day has been co-opted by big business and all of the romance that once existed has long since been traded for consumerism. This year maybe we could eschew the boxes of overly sweet candy and the Hallmark cards with soulless verses and instead, reclaim the romance. What do you find truly romantic – a glance, an unexpected gesture, a stolen kiss?
Rome is one of the world’s greatest romantic cities and it is perhaps the most alluring because it doesn’t show off. There is no fanfare; you make your way through a warren of narrow cobbled streets that stretch for miles and suddenly you round a corner and are faced with the impossibly ancient Parthenon or the utterly romantic Trevi Fountain. I didn’t have to look for the romance in Rome; the romance found me.
I’m hoping you fall head over heels for this week’s theme because I’ve had an awful lot of fun with it. If you would like to join in (everyone’s welcome!) here’s what to do:
- Create your own post and title it Travel theme: Romance
- Include a link to this page in your post so others can find it too
- Get your post in by next Thursday, as the new travel theme comes out on Friday
- Don’t forget to subscribe to keep up to date on the latest weekly travel themes. Sign up via the email subscription link in the sidebar or RSS!
“Romance is the glamour which turns the dust of everyday life into a golden haze.” – Carolyn Gold Heilbrun
“Romance is everything.” – Gertrude Stein