Sweet Dreams for Valentines Day

Sweet dreams that told of ones true love on Valentines Day: In the 1700s, rural Englishwomen would pin five bay leaves to their pillows—four on the corners, one in the middle—on the evening before Valentine’s Day. By doing so, it was said, they would see their future husbands in their dreams.

A variation of this tradition called for women to sprinkle bay leaves with rosewater and lay them across their pillows. “When you go to bed put on a clean nightgown turned wrong side outwards,” reads one folkloric account, “and, lying down, say these words softly to yourself: ‘Good Valentine, be kind to me, In dreams let me my true love see.’ ”