02/6/14

A Love Story

Robert and Elizabeth Barrett Browning are know to be the most romantic literary couple from the Victorian period.

After reading her poems for the first time, Robert wrote to her: “I love your verses with all my heart,

dear Miss Barrett–I do, as I say, love these verses with all my heart.”

With that first meeting of hearts and minds, a love affair would blossom between the two.

During the 20 months of their courtship, the couple exchanged nearly 600 letters. But what is love without obstacles and hardships?

Mr. Browning knew that he was asking to be allowed to take charge of an invalid’s life—believed indeed that she was even worse than was really the case, and that she was hopelessly incapacitated from ever standing on her feet—-but was sure enough of his love to regard that as no obstacle.

 

IMG_3542

Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same.    Emily Bronte

 

Her father disowned her and she faced disgust from her brothers, who believed she had married

a low-class gold digger. However, Elizabeth stood by her husband, and shortly after their wedding,

they fled to Italy.

 

Out of their courtship and those early days of marriage came an outpouring of poetic expression.

Elizabeth finally gave her little packet of sonnets to her husband, who could not keep them to himself.

“I dared not,” he said, “reserve to myself the finest sonnets written in any language since Shakespeare’s.”

The collection finally appeared in 1850 as “Sonnets from the Portuguese.”

 

IMG_3556

Who so loves believes the impossible.  Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

 

The Brownings lived in Italy for the next 15 years of their lives, until Elizabeth died in Robert’s arms on June 29, 1861.

 

It was while they were living there in Italy that they both wrote some of their most memorable poems.

 

February 2014 031

I love thee to the depth and breadth and height my soul can reach.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

February 2014 014

You were made perfectly to be loved – and surely I have loved you, in the idea of you, my whole life long

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

IMG_3546

There is no remedy for love but to love more.

Henry David Thoreau

 

February 2014 013

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

February 2014 010

 

Take away love and our earth is a tomb.

Robert Browning

 

February 2014 029

 

All my soul follows you love, – encircles you- and I live in being yours.

Robert Browning

 

IMG_3511

 

Grow old with me, the best is yet to be.

Robert Browning

 

IMG_3550

Smiles, tears, of all my life! – and, if God choose, I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

 

 

I love a good romance story, especially when it’s true.

Count down to Valentine’s Day.