• Mon, Feb 6 2012

The 10 Most Romantic Couples In History

We’re gearing up for Valentine’s Day with a lot of books and movies that remind us of the enduring power of love. And when we get bored with those, we look at historical couples. Because on rare occasions, true stories are almost as good as fiction. Certainly, that’s the case with these ten couples:

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  • queen of the rats

    um what about hadrian and antinous? come on, best couple EVER

  • queen of the rats

    also can i just say there are a lot of weird historical assumptions in this article? like that beatrice and dante even ever met, that he was 9 and she was 8 (some accounts say that he was like 16 and she was 8 or so, the important thing being that no one actually knows), that marilyn monroe committed suicide, et cetera?

  • Eileen

    Wait, wasn’t Patroclus Achilles’ cousin? Not sure I would call them a “romantic couple“…

    • Ashley Cardiff

      They were cousins in the movie Troy. I’m guessing that’s because Hollywood couldn’t figure out how to make Brad Pitt the lead in a butch action adventure while also letting him have a male lover.

  • Emily W.

    Also, Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth should have been on the list!

    • MR

      Yeah, that’s a good one. I’ve done that myself – stumble in my first presentation to a woman. Nothing that swimming fully clothed across a lake can’t solve.

  • Kj

    Camila O’Gorman and Ladislao Guitierrez!

    Their love happened during the 1840s in Argentina, when the land was ruled by the brutal dictator Juan Manuel de Rosas.

    Camila was a rich socialite and Ladislao a priest, so when they eloped it caused somewhat of a scandal. The opposition to the dictator used this to mock him, saying that immorality reigned in his country. As a result he had them tracked down and executed together.

    If you want to watch it on film, the movie is called Camila, directed by awesome Argentine woman Maria Luisa Bemberg (bonus – female director!) …but be careful, I literally cried for a week after seeing it, and I don’t ever cry from movies.

  • Dana G

    A letter from Napoleon to Josephine:

    Dec. 29, 1795

    I awake all filled with you. Your image and the intoxicating pleasures of last night, allow my senses no rest.

    Sweet and matchless Josephine, how strangely you work upon my heart.

    Are you angry with me? Are you unhappy? Are you upset?

    My soul is broken with grief and my love for you forbids repose. But how can I rest any more, when I yield to the feeling that masters my inmost self, when I quaff from your lips and from your heart a scorching flame?

    Yes! One night has taught me how far your portrait falls short of yourself!

    You start at midday: in three hours I shall see you again.

    Till then, a thousand kisses, mio dolce amor! but give me none back for they set my blood on fire. 

  • Arnie

    Alexander the Great and Hephaestion were always one of my favourites. Aristotle described them as “… one soul abiding in two bodies”, and after Hepaestion’s death, Alexander was completely inconsolable. He spend the first two days crying over his body and refusing to eat, before ordering massacres and a hugely elaborate funeral, amongst other things.

    My great grandparents also have a really cool story. She was from an upper class family, and her family did not approve of her liaisons with such a low class boy. So they snuck away in the middle of the night and caught a boat all the way from England to New Zealand. She never saw her family again, as far as I’m aware, although I think her sister might have occasionally send money over for them.

  • Kay

    TRACY AND HEPBURN. They make my grinchy little heart flutter.

  • miinxi

    Tatiana & Alexander

  • Billious

    Travelling sharp-shooter Frank Butler met Annie Oakley when he put up a $100 bet that he could beat any local sharp-shooter in Cincinnati. At 15, she beat him when he missed his 25th shot. They married, lived, and worked together for 44 years. Upon her death at 66, Frank was so upset he stopped eating and died 18 days later.

  • Disha

    How about emperor Shah Jahan and his wife Mumtaz??……..Shah Jahan built the Taj Mahal out of love for his deceased wife……..

  • Celia

    Clark Gable and Carole Lombard! So heartbreakingly wonderful.

  • sigh

    Artist/designers Ray & Charles Eames, the mother & father of mid-century modernism!

  • GM

    Tolkien wrote a story called “The Tale of Beren and Luthien”. Luthien was a star-child or Elf and Beren was mortal. But, he fell so in love with her and she with him that the season changed around them while in each others embrace. Then they went to bring back the One Ring, the one that all the Hobbit and Lord of the Rings stories are based upon.
    Great love story, lots of sacrifice and heroism.

  • Matt Hardy

    Johnny and June

  • Blues K

    Leyla & Majnun

    • Blues K

      It’s an old story about a nomadic shepherd who fell in love with a woman who was going to be married to someone else according to their custom. He was heartbroken & wandered the desert writing poetry in the sand never to be found. Other local shepherds found the poetry & sang shepherdic songs based on it.

  • Arianne Stark of Winterfell

    BONNIE AND CLYDE!!!