7 Fictional Couples That Match These Elizabeth Browning Quotes

Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s romantic poetry is known as some of the most beautiful work ever written. To honor that legacy, here are some modern couples that we think of when we read it.

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A cloudy purple and pink sky, with a teal book in the middle and images of couples kissing on each side of it.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning was a true pioneer for female poets everywhere. She published well known works such as Aurora Leigh — known for being an unconventional “novel-poem” rooted in feminism — and Sonnets from the Portuguese — a romantic collection of sonnets for her husband. From these (and her many other poems) we have gathered a collection of quotes that remind us of our favorite fictional couples.

From Sonnets from the Portuguese

“What I do and what I dream include thee, as the wine must taste of its own grapes”

– VI
A boy and a girl, both with brown hair, look at each other, sitting very close in a field of purple flowers.

This is a gorgeously romantic quote, but for fun, I’m giving this one to Bella and Edward. Upon meeting Edward, Bella’s life quickly became consumed by him, and everything she did was because of him, so this obsessive quote kind of makes sense.

“How do I love thee? Let me count the ways”

A man with shoulder length curly brown hair leans in to kiss a girl with braided blonde hair. They are in a parking lot.

In the interest of irony, I’m actually going to give this one to Patrick and Kat from 10 Things I Hate About You. You know why.

“I lean upon thee, Dear, without alarm / And feel as safe as guarded by a charm / Against the stab of worldlings”

A yellow book cover with a view of two people top down on it; the one on the left is sitting on a red striped towel and the one on the right is laying face down on a blue floral towel. It says "Beach Read" and "Emily Henry" on it.

I feel like this one most relates to Gus and January from Beach Read. For the majority of the book, January hides away from life but finds solace and comfort in Gus. She can both face the real world and feel safe in her own little life with him.

From Other Poems and Letters

“You have come to me as a dream comes, as the best dreams come.”

Letter from Elizabeth Barrett Browning to Robert Browning, 02/24/1846
A man and a woman, both with brown hair, lean their foreheads together against a warm ocean background.

Because of the recent announcement of the sequel, I think Practical Magic has been on all our minds lately, so this quote immediately struck me as a Gary and Sally quote. I mean, it’s so similar to the “I wished for you too” quote from the movie it might as well have been said by Sally or Gary rather than Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

“You moved me as usual yesterday into the sunshine, and then I am dazzled and cannot see clearly.”

Letter from Elizabeth Barrett Browning to Robert Browning, 01/31/1846
A man and woman look at each other in a clean silver facility. They are both wearing black clothing and we can see from the waist up.

This quote definitely belongs to Gale and Katniss. One of the fandom’s main gripes with this pairing was how jealous Gale could be, and how he seemed to see her (at least, at first) only in the context of their relationship. This was especially apparent with his distaste for Katniss and Peeta’s relationship.

“Gaze up at the stars knowing that I see the same sky and wish the same sweet dreams.”

A pink book cover with red, white, and blue text that says "Red, White & Royal Blue" and has two drawn figures. The one on  the left is wearing a white shirt and blue pants, and the one on the right is wearing a royal red outfit.

This one made me think of Red, White and Royal Blue pretty quickly. Alex and Henry literally live on different sides of the world, having only the night sky as their constant companion.

“I have your memory, the knowledge of you, the idea of you printed into my heart and brain.”

Letter from Robert Browning to Elizabeth Barrett Browning, 12/22/1845
A man (left) and a woman (right) stand close and look at each other. They are in a candle-lit ballroom and are each wearing regency-era clothing.

Obviously, I had to end this one with our all-time favorite literary couple: Darcy and Elizabeth from Pride and Prejudice. This quote fits especially well with them, not just because it displays a complete and utter devotion to each other but also because it makes note of loving the idea of someone, a pretty big theme throughout the novel. It actually comes from a letter to Elizabeth Barrett Browning from her husband, but I still adore it because it showcases the love and poetics she inspires in people.

I could go on and on (and on, and on, and on) about my favorite fictional couples, so it was pretty easy to label each of these beautiful love quotes with the couple that fits the best. Elizabeth Barrett Browning is a MASTER of poetry and easily puts the feeling of being head over heels in love with someone into just a few lines of poetry or prose. Do you have a couple that you think would fit better with one of these quotes? Let us know on Instagram, Facebook, or X (or all three if you’re especially passionate about it)!

Want to learn more about Elizabeth Barrett Browning? Check out our article on some of her most notable poetry!

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