THE SORROWS OF SAINT VALENTINE

"Moestitia of Sanctus Valentine"

"Arca Mortuus Diligo"

"The Lover's Box"

"Áengust Brooch"

Art and written research by Jeremy Bowen and Matthew Lemon

In the 1700’s, a young Irish woman by the name of Brigid Bhraonáin had just wed a French scholar by the name of Adrian Honoré Léon, on February 14th St. Valentine’s Day. To honor their marriage, Adrian bestowed a gift to his new wife: a love token known as a ‘Brooch’. It was a symbol that their love would be as pure as the rivers of Ireland. They lived in a small French village and birthed a child, a young girl. They continued through the years as a loving couple, but Adrian began to put off a secretive tone, and Brigid grew quite suspicious of his actions. He started arriving quite a bit later each night, and smelt of ales on his breath and clothing. It wasn’t until one night... on the night of their wedding anniversary, that he didn’t arrive. Instead, he was found passed out in a nearby alley, and slumped over a young prostitute who was intoxicated as well.

She fled with her child to her closest friend, the local baker, who sat down with her and poured a hot cup of tea with some freshly baked croissants. "Brigid dear, what seems to be the matter?" she asked. In tears, she responded "Adrian did not arrive at the dinner of our anniversary, he was out with a liquored up harlot, and is now passed out in the alley near the pub!" "Well dear, he shall curse the day he laid eyes upon you. Take the symbol of love... the Brooch that he gave you, to the goods merchant. He might just have something waiting for you."
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Beauty In Search of Knowledge - Artist unknown, 1782


She arrived at the merchants shop, and he was already waiting for her. He handed her a lovely box lacquered in red and black. "Take this Mrs. Bhraonáin, its yours, this box holds many answers to the puzzles of life and love. If he is pure of heart, he will NEVER have the ability to open it. But if he is tainted and full of lies, the box will open for him. Give him this as a token of your love... his anniversary gift."

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