Here are 10 of the all time most romantic couples in mankind’s history.
1. Romeo and Juliet. Arguably, the most famous pair of lovers of all time, this is one love story by William Shakespeare that has inspired generation of lovers, and continues to do so till today. Rome and Juliet are the ultimate synonyms for true, eternal love, and also of love’s greatest sacrifice – one’s own life.
2. Pyramus and Thisbe. Penned by the Roman poet Ovid in his work ‘Metamorphoses’, this is a tragic love story that probably set the tone for William Shakespeare’s ‘Romeo and Juliet’ several centuries later. In this story, two young lovers are next door neighbours but cannot meet openly because of their respective warring families. They used to meet secretly and one day agreed to have a rendezvous under the mulberry tree. Through a series of unfortunate incidents and colossal misunderstandings, both Pryramus and Thisbe die within minutes of each other, each killing oneself believing the other to be dead.
3. Cleopatra and Mark Antony. Intriguing, memorable and intensely romantic, this is a love story whose passionate appeal has not dimmed with time. Not surprisingly, William Shakespeare dramatized the tale of true love in his play. Cleopatra, a breathtakingly beautiful woman, intelligent and powerful, was the last Pharaoh of Egypt while Mark Antony was the Roman general who had succeeded his slain friend Julius Caesar. The two fell in love instantly and their union made them a formidable ruling power, putting Egypt in a position of supremacy. As with all love stories, their course too never ran straight and false news of Cleopatra’s death caused Antony to impale himself on his own sword. The shattered Egyptian Queen followed suit, unable to live without her lover.
4. Salim and Anarkali.The Mughals, who ruled India from 1526 till 1858, not only built one of the greatest monument of love there ever was – the Taj Mahal – but also produced several memorable love stories. Among them, the most popular tale has been that of the handsome Prince Salim (the as-yet-uncrowned Emperor Jehangir) and the beautiful courtesan Anarkali, the court dancer of his father’s palace. Their love story is the stuff of legends – unlikely alliance, insurmountable social barriers and parental opposition. And, the final, heart-breaking end when Anarkali is walled alive even as a jailed Salim looks on helplessly.
5. Tristan and Isolde. Isolde, the daughter of King of Ireland was engaged to be married to King Mark of Cornwall. King Mark sent his nephew Tristan to Ireland to escort his bride-to-be to Cornwall. However, destiny had planned otherwise. Both Tristan and Isolde fell passionately in love with each other. However, Isolde went on to marry King Mark but never stopped loving Tristan. King Mark learnt of this affair and banished Tristan from Cornwall. The heartbroken Tristan went to Brittany where he met Iseult of Brittany. Ultimately he marries her but never consummates the union. Finally, due to a lie on the part of Iseult, Tristan dies of grief. The shattered Isolde dies soon after.