In an age of e-mails, tweets, and texted “I luv u’s,” this beautiful selection of original love letters invites us into a privileged realm and reminds us why the written word is so special. The twenty-five handwritten letters included in Love Letters span centuries, cultures, and continents, with letters by figures such as Henry VIII, Charles Dickens, Charlotte Brontë, Admiral Nelson, Oscar Wilde, and Mervyn Peake, among others. The letters contain expressions of every shade of love, from the joy of falling in love to the pain of unrequited love. So this Valentine’s Day, follow the example of those below: pick up a pen and record some passionate missives of your own.
“And whereas I know your Majesty’s absence is never without great respects of things most convenient and necessary, yet love and affection compelleth me to desire your presence.”—Katherine Parr to Henry VIII, July 1544
“And as my last writing before the battle will be to you so I hope in God that I shall live to finish my letter after the Battle.”—Horatio Nelson to Lady Emma Hamilton, October 1805
“You came to me to learn the Pleasure of Life and the Pleasure of Art. Perhaps I am chosen to teach you something much more wonderful, the meaning of Sorrow and its beauty.”—Ocsar Wilde to Lord Alfred Douglas, January 1897
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