To "hold a candle" for someone

Posted by Tina callcut on May 12, 2003

I have seen how "hold a candle to" someone (or for someone) can mean to assist, in the context of an apprentice holding a candle for a senior worker. My family has always used it to mean yearning for someone romantically, usually unrequitedly... Have we just got the wrong end of the stick (or possibly the candle?) or is there some basis for our use of this phrase???