History Today have published A Medieval Valentine, a short article by yours truly about the Paston family and this wonderful letter of February 1477:
Unto my right well-beloved Valentine John Paston, squire, be this bill delivered etc. Right reverent and worshipful and my right well-beloved Valentine, I recommend me unto you full heartily, desiring to hear of your welfare, which I beseech Almighty God long to preserve unto his pleasure and your heart’s desire. And if it pleases you to hear of my welfare, I am not in good health of body or heart, nor shall be until I hear from you; for there is no creature who knows what pain I endure… And my lady my mother has laboured the matter to my father diligently, but she can get no more than you already know of, for which God knows I’m very sorry. But if you love me, as I trust truly that you do, you will not leave me for that; for if you have not half the livelihood that you have, for to do the greatest labour that any woman alive might, I would not forsake you…. And I beseech you that this bill not be seen by any earthly creature save yourself. And this letter was written at Topcroft, with a full heavy heart,
By your own Margery Brews
You’ll have to read the article to find out more!