Lord Byron To Lady
My dearest Caroline,
If tears, which you saw & know I am not apt to shed, if the agitation in
which I parted from you, agitation which you must have perceived through the
whole of this most nervous nervous affair, did not commence till the moment
of leaving you approached, if all that I have said & done, & am still but too
ready to say & do, have not sufficiently proved what my real feelings are &
must be ever towards you, my love, I have no other proof to offer.
God knows I wish you happy, & when I quit you, or rather when you from a
sense of duty to your husband & mother quit me, you shall acknowledge the
truth of what I again promise & vow, that no other in word or deed shall ever
hold the place in my affection which is & shall be most sacred to you, till I
I never knew till that moment, the madness of -- my dearest & most beloved
friend -- I cannot express myself -- this is no time for words -- but I shall
have a pride, a melancholy pleasure, in suffering what you yourself can
hardly conceive -- for you don not know me. -- I am now about to go out with
a heavy heart, because -- my appearing this Evening will stop any absurd
story which the events of today might give rise to -- do you think now that I
am cold & stern, & artful -- will even others think so, will your mother even
-- that mother to whom we must indeed sacrifice much, more much more on my
part, than she shall ever know or can imagine.
"Promises not to love you" ah Caroline it is past promising -- but shall
attribute all concessions to the proper motive -- & never cease to feel all
that you have already witnessed -- & more than can ever be known but to my
own heart -- perhaps to yours -- May God protect forgive & bless you -- ever
& even more than ever.
yr. most attached
P.S. -- These taunts which have driven you to this -- my dearest Caroline --
were it not for your mother & the kindness of all your connections, is there
anything on earth or heaven would have made me so happy as to have made you
mine long ago? & not less now than then, but more than ever at this time --
you know I would with pleasure give up all here & all beyond the grave for
you -- & in refraining from this -- must my motives be misunderstood --? I
care not who knows this -- what use is made of it -- it is you & to you only
that they owe yourself, I was and am yours, freely & most entirely, to obey,
to honour, love --& fly with you when, where, & how you yourself might & may
John Keats To Fanny Brawne
You fear, sometimes, I do not love you so much as you wish? My dear Girl I
love you ever and ever and without reserve. The more I have known you the
more have I lov'd. In every way - even my jealousies have been agonies of
Love, in the hottest fit I ever had I would have died for you. I have vex'd
you too much. But for Love! Can I help it? You are always new. The last of
your kisses was ever the sweetest; the last smile the brightest; the last
movement the gracefullest. When you pass'd my window home yesterday, I was
fill'd with as much admiration as if I had then seen you for the first time.
You uttered a half complaint once that I only lov'd your Beauty. Have I
nothing else then to love in you but that? Do not I see a heart naturally
furnish'd with wings imprison itself with me? No ill prospect has been able
to turn your thoughts a moment from me. This perhaps should be as much a
subject of sorrow as joy - but I will not talk of that. Even if you did not
love me I could not help an entire devotion to you: how much more deeply then
must I feel for you knowing you love me. My Mind has been the most
discontented and restless one that ever was put into a body too small for it.
I never felt my Mind repose upon anything with complete and undistracted
enjoyment - upon no person but you. When you are in the room my thoughts
never fly out of window: you always concentrate my whole senses. The anxiety
shown about our Love in your last note is an immense pleasure to me; however
you must not suffer such speculations to molest you any more: not will I any
more believe you can have the least pique against me. Brown is gone out --
but here is Mrs Wylie -- when she is gone I shall be awake for you. --
Remembrances to your Mother.
Your affectionate, J. Keats
Napoleon Bonaparte To Josephine
I wake filled with thoughts
of you. Your portrait and the intoxicating evening which we spent yesterday
have left my senses in turmoil. Sweet, incomparable Josephine, what a strange
effect you have on my heart! Are you angry? Do I see you looking sad? Are you
worried?... My soul aches with sorrow, and there can be no rest for you
lover; but is there still more in store for me when, yielding to the profound
feelings which overwhelm me, I draw from your lips, from your heart a love
which consumes me with fire? Ah! it was last night that I fully realized how
false an image of you your portrait gives!
You are leaving at noon; I
shall see you in three hours.
Until then, mio dolce amor,
a thousand kisses; but give me none in return, for they set my blood on fire.
Honore de Balzac to Madame Evelina Hanska
Our love will bloom always fairer, fresher, more gracious, because it is
a true love, and because genuine love is ever increasing.
It is a beautiful plant growing from year to year in the heart, ever
extending its palms and branches, doubling every season its glorious clusters
and perfumes; and, my dear life, tell me, repeat to me always, that nothing
will bruise its bark or its delicate leaves, that it will grow larger in both
our hearts, loved, free, watched over, like a life within our life...
Leo Tolstoy, Russian to Valeria Arsenev
I already love in you your beauty, but I am only beginning to love in you
that which is eternal and ever precious - your heart, your soul. Beauty one
could get to know and fall in love with in one hour and cease to love it as
speedily; but the soul one must learn to know. Believe me, nothing on earth
is given without labour, even love, the most beautiful and natural of