In our last article, we explored the romantic quotes from Jane Austen and Elizabeth Barrett Browning. Today, we move on to the Brontë Sisters.
The Brontë Sisters
Charlotte, Emily, and Anne Brontë have given us some of the most quotable romantic moments in 19th-century literature. Charlotte and Emily are more well known but Anne holds her own when it comes to telling a story.
Charlotte was born on April 21, 1816, the third child of Patrick and Maria Brontë. Charlotte was very close with her brother, Branwell. The two of them invented complex imaginary worlds and wrote about them in tiny homemade books.
Charlotte is best known for passionate novel Jane Eyre (1847) but she also published three other novels and many poems. Two of the novels, Villette (1853) and The Professor (published following her death in 1857) are influenced by her unrequited love for the headmaster of the school where she taught.
She married her long-time suitor, Arthur Nicholls, in June 1854. Charlotte died of complications of pregnancy on March 31, 1855.
Here is one of Charlotte’s most quotable romantic moments.
“I have for the first time found what I can truly love–I have found you. You are my sympathy–my better self–my good angel–I am bound to you with a strong attachment. I think you good, gifted, lovely: a fervent, a solemn passion is conceived in my heart; it leans to you, draws you to my centre and spring of life, wrap my existence about you–and, kindling in pure, powerful flame, fuses you and me in one.”
– Jane Eyre (Mr. Rochester)
Emily was the fifth child born to Patrick and Maria Brontë. She entered the world on July 30, 1818. Like her older siblings, she created an imaginary land in which she and her younger sister, Anne, would play. Known as Gondal, this place is reminiscent of the setting of her best-known novel, Wuthering Heights. Perhaps, there is neither no greater love nor no greater tragedy when it comes to her characters, Cathy and Heathcliff. Emily Bronte died of tuberculosis in December 1848.
Here are some of her quotable romantic moments.
“He’s more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made out of, his and mine are the same…If all else perished, and he remained, I should still continue to be; and if all else remained, and he were annihilated, the universe would turn to a mighty stranger.” (Cathy)
“If he loved you with all the power of his soul for a whole lifetime, he couldn’t love you as much as I do in a single day.” (Heathcliff)
“They forgot everything the minute they were together.”
Anne was the sixth and youngest child of Patrick and Maria Brontë. She was born on January 17, 1820. She was very close to her older sister, Emily. Anne’s writing style contained a different kind of romance than those of her sisters. Her heroes were quiet, supportive men. Yet, there is plenty of romance to be found in her writing. She is best known for her novels Agnes Grey and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. Anne fell ill over Christmas 1848. Although she rallied in February and able to go to the seaside in hope of restoring her health and to see her beloved York Minster. She did not recover, however, and died on May 28, 1849.
Here is an example of Anne’s quotable romantic moments.
“He had not breathed a word of love, or dropped one hint of tenderness or affection, and yet I had been supremely happy. To be near him, to hear him talk as he did talk, and to feel that he thought me worthy to be so spoken to – capable of understanding and duly appreciating such discourse – was enough.” – Agnes Grey
“Farewell to Thee!
But not farewell to all my fondest thoughts of Thee;
Within my heart they still shall dwell
And they shall cheer and comfort me.” – poem
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