Love Letters
Words of Love From The Past

 

Immortal Beloved

Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827), one of history's most famous and mysterious composers died at the age of 57 with one great secret. Upon his death, a love letter was found among his possessions. It was written to an unknown woman who Beethoven simply called his “Immortal
Beloved.”

July 6, 1806

My angel, my all, my very self -- only a few words today and at that with your pencil -- not till tomorrow will my lodgings be definitely determined upon -- what a useless waste of time. Why this deep sorrow where necessity speaks -- can our love endure except through sacrifices -- except through not demanding everything -- can you change it that you are not wholly mine, I not wholly thine?

Oh, God! look out into the beauties of nature and comfort yourself with that which must be -- love demands everything and that very justly -- that it is with me so far as you are concerned, and you with
me. If we were wholly united you would feel the pain of it as little as I!

Now a quick change to things internal from things external. We shall surely see each other; moreover, I cannot communicate to you the observations I have made during the last few days touching my own life -- if our hearts were always close together I would make none of the kind. My heart is full of many things to say to you - Ah! -- there are moments when I feel that speech is nothing after all -- cheer up -- remain my true, only treasure, my all as I am yours; the gods must send us the rest that which shall be best for us.

Your faithful,
Ludwig 

 

 

George Gordon, Lord Byron (1788-1824) 

25 August, 1819 

My dearest Teresa, 

I have read this book in your garden;--my love, you were absent, or else I could not have read it. It is a favourite book of yours, and the writer was a friend of mine. You will not understand these English words, and others will not understand them,--which is the reason I have not scrawled them in Italian. But you will recognize the handwriting of him who passionately loved you, and you will divine that, over a book which was yours, he could only think of love. 

In that word, beautiful in all languages, but most so in yours--Amor mio--is comprised my existence here and hereafter. I feel I exist here, and I feel I shall exist hereafter,--to what purpose you will decide; my destiny rests with you, and you are a woman, eighteen years of age, and two out of a convent. I love you, and you love me,--at least, you say so, and act as if you did so, which last is a great consolation in all events. 

But I more than love you, and cannot cease to love you. Think of me, sometimes, when the Alps and ocean divide us, --but they never will, unless you wish it.

 

 

Henry VIII (1528)

To Anne Boleyn

My Mistress and Friend,
I and my heart put ourselves in your hands, begging you to recommend us to your good grace and not to let absence lessen your affection...or myself the pang of absence is already to great, and when I think of the increase of what I must needs suffer it would be well nigh intolerable but for my firm hope of your unchangeable affection...

Henry VIII (1528)

 

 

A Love Letter By Victor Hugo to Adele Foucher

March 15, 1822

After the two delightful evenings spent yesterday and the day before, I shall certainly not go out tonight, but will sit here at home and write to you.

Besides, my Adele, my adorable and adored Adele, what have I not to tell you?

O, God! for two days, I have been asking myself every moment if such happiness is not a dream.

It seems to me that what I feel is not of earth. I cannot yet comprehend this cloudless heaven.

You do not yet know, Adele, to what I had resigned myself. Alas, do I know it myself?

Because I was weak, I fancied I was calm; because I was preparing myself for all the mad follies of despair, I thought I was courageous and resigned.

Ah! let me cast myself humbly at your feet, you who are so grand, so tender and strong!

I had been thinking that the utmost limit of my devotion could only be the sacrifice of my life; but you, my generous love, were ready to sacrifice for me the repose of yours.

You have been privileged to receive every gift from nature, you have both fortitude and tears.

Oh, Adele, do not mistake these words for blind enthusiasm - enthusiasm for you has lasted all my life, and increased day by day.

My whole soul is yours.

If my entire existence had not been yours, the harmony of my being would have been lost, and I must have died -- died inevitably.

These were my meditations, Adele, when the letter that was to bring me hope of else despair arrived.

If you love me, you know what must have been my joy. What I know you may have felt, I will not describe.

My Adele, why is there no word for this but joy? Is it because there is no power in human speech to express such happiness?

The sudden bound from mournful resignation to infinite felicity seemed to upset me. Even now I am still beside myself and sometimes I tremble lest I should suddenly awaken from this dream divine.

Oh, now you are mine! At last you are mine! Soon -- in a few months, perhaps, my angel will sleep in my arms, will awaken in my arms, will live there.

All your thoughts at all moments, all your looks will be for me; all my thoughts, all my moments, all my looks, will be for you!

My Adele!

Adieu, my angel, my beloved Adele! Adieu!

I will kiss your hair and go to bed.

Still I am far from you, but I can dream of you.

Soon perhaps you will be at my side.

Adieu; pardon the delirium of your husband who embraces you, and who adores you, both for this life and another.

 

Napoleon Bonaparte

In addition to being a brilliant military mind and feared ruler, Napoleon Bonaparte (1763 - 1821) was a prolific writer of letters. He reportedly wrote as many as 75,000 letters in his lifetime, many of them to his beautiful wife, Josephine, both before and during their marriage. This letter, written just prior to their 1796 wedding, shows surprising tenderness and emotion from the future emperor.


Paris, December 1795

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.

 

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To read more love letters and correspondence from the past, visit The Romantic or Internet Pen

 

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