Reblogging season: How Do I Love Thee?

The Genealogy of Style is one of those rare blogs that is a genuine cultural resource. Luixe gives us exquisitely framed perspectives of the arts, often slantwise, or focussing on a detail of a picture or poem that you stupidly thought you knew all about already.

All Luixe’s posts deserve reblogging – I can’t keep up with their frequency, depth and breadth – so I’ve selected this one out of pure sentiment’s sake. I was brought up by my mother to love Elizabeth Barratt and Robert Browning, history’s most romantic and equal couple, as family friends. I was named after Browning’s Pippa Passes.

The Genealogy of Style

Idyll, Frederic Leighton, c. 1880-81


NUMBER 43

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.
I love thee to the depth and breadth and height
My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight
For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.
I love thee to the level of everyday’s
Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.
I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;
I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.
I love thee with the passion put to use
In my old griefs, and with my childhood’s faith.
I love thee with a love I seemed to lose
With my lost saints,—I love thee with the breath,
Smiles, tears, of all my life!—and, if God choose,
I shall but love thee better after death.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Sonnets from the Portuguese


Sonnets from the Portuguese, written ca. 1845–1846 and first published…

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2 comments on “Reblogging season: How Do I Love Thee?

  1. PJR says:

    That’s what I thought! Luixe’s matching of image with text is always apposite and nuanced. Leighton’s mythological subject matter and vibrant but controlled sensuality are totally in keeping with Elizabeth Barrett’s poetry. Robert Browning chose Leighton to design her tomb.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. beetleypete says:

    Lovely stuff for Valentine’s Day, and a very appropriate painting too.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    Liked by 1 person

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