Well, since Suzanne covered all the negative aspects of so-called “True Love” last week, I thought I would mention some good examples of real true love in fiction, as well as how they correlate to the Love Chapter of the Bible, I Corinthians 13.
Mr. Knightley & Emma
I Cor. 13:4 “Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not, charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up.”
Emma, in the beginning of her story, was prideful and arrogant. She considered herself a matchmaker after one successful pairing. She became overly confident in her “abilities” and was eager to try again. Mr. Knightley, her good friend and only critic, attempted to dissuade her from meddling in other people’s lives. Despite Emma’s exasperating and somewhat disastrous attempts to “improve” her social circle, Mr. Knightley expressed patience with her while gently guiding her to a higher level of character. He was very honest with her, keeping her grounded to reality with his critiques of her character. Originally, she ignored his advice and went ahead with her plan, bringing heartache to everyone involved. Mr. Knightley expressed his disappointment in her, and she strived to fix the wrongs she has created. When Knightley returns from being away at his brother’s house, they meet, and after clearing away previous and present misunderstandings, he proposed, and it’s just so perfect, I simply have to quote it: “I cannot make speeches, Emma. If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me. I have blamed you and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it. Bear with the truths I would tell you now, dearest Emma, as well as you you have borne the..But you understand me. Yes, you see, you understand my feelings…”
Edward Ferrars & Elinor Dashwood
I Cor. 13:5 “Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; ”
Edward and Elinor met and became friends before she left Norland to move to the country. There was mutual attraction, but, both having reserved personalities, they did not make their feelings known. Later in the book, Elinor found out that Edward had been long engaged to another woman. She was understandably surprised and hurt, but she did not treat Edward any differently when they came in contact with each other. She continued to treat him with the highest respect and regard, even in the face of apparent betrayal. The situation was resolved when Edward’s engagement was broken, and Edward and Elinor were free to be together at last.
Mr. Darcy & Elizabeth Bennet
I Cor. 13:6 “Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth;”
Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet’s story is one of the most widely known literary romances. His pride and her prejudice kept them from getting to know each other properly. Her opinion of him poor to begin with, but it was decided when she heard about his “injustices” to Wickham. Her dislike of him intensified when she heard of the part he played in ending the relationship between his friend Mr. Bingley and her sister Jane. Then, he proposed horribly (it really was a rubbish proposal, wasn’t it?) and she refused, vehemently expressing her dislike of him. After the botched proposal, he gave her a letter, explaining his actions concerning Wickham and Bingley and Jane’s relationship. Once exposed to the truth of Wickham’s devious dealings, she better understood and even somewhat sympathized with Mr. Darcy. Her opinion improved further after seeing him in Pemberley, his home, and seeing how kind and warm-hearted he really was. She was with Darcy when she heard about the scandal involving her youngest sister Lydia and Wickham. She rushed home to be with her family while Darcy went to find Wickham and remedy the situation for her. When Elizabeth learns the truth about Darcy’s actions concerning Lydia and Wickham, she expresses her thanks on behalf of her and her family. He tells her that he did this for her alone, explaining that he still loves her. She admits that her feelings have completely changed and she is in love with him too.
The 10th Doctor & Rose Tyler
I Cor. 13:7 “Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.”
“…if I believe in one thing…just one thing…I believe in her.” Of course, this is 10 talking about Rose in the the Doctor Who episode “The Satan Pit.” 10 and Rose sure went through a lot, didn’t they? Battling a myriad of aliens, defeating a werewolf, and the like. Then one day, the battle was won, but she was ripped away from him and had to live in a parallel world for years without any contact with him. Forced to go their separate ways, 10 went through two companions and many more adventures, while she started working with Torchwood in the parallel world to find a way to make it back to the Doctor, never giving up hope that she would see him again.
Aragorn & Arwen
I Cor. 13:8 “Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.”
Aragorn and Arwen met in a strikingly similar way as Beren and Lúthien met in the Silmarillion. He was walking in the woods one day close to Rivendell and heard someone singing. He saw Arwen, and not knowing who she was, called her Lúthien. From that moment on, she was the only woman he ever loved. However, their budding relationship could not be allowed, being that she was an elf and immortal, and he was just a man. He left the sanctuary of Rivendell to begin fighting in the war against Sauron. He returned to the elves, to Lothlórien this time, and was surprised to find Arwen there. They spent some time together, but soon Aragorn was pulled away from her again to go fight in the War of the Ring. He did not expect to see her again, the elves were leaving Middle-earth and sailing to the Undying Lands. When the war was won and the Ring destroyed, Aragorn was crowned King of Gondor. Peace began to fall on Middle-earth and Elrond allowed Aragorn and Arwen to marry.
Faramir & Eowyn
I Cor. 13:13 “And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.” In Return of the King, Eowyn was injured during her battle with the Witch-king and was forced to stay behind in Minas Tirith to heal while the armies went to the Black Gates. This is when she met Faramir, who also stayed behind to recover from his near-death experience with the Ringwraiths. She had fallen into depression, losing the hope that they would survive this war against Sauron and Mordor. “The reason of my waking mind tells me that great evil has fallen and we stand at the end of days. But my heart says nay; and all my limbs are light, and a hope and joy are come to me that no reason can deny. Eowyn, Eowyn, White Lady of Rohan, in this hour I do not believe that any darkness will endure.” (Return of the King, Chapter 5,”The Steward of Gondor”) Faramir, on the other hand, was a light for her in the overwhelming darkness of their situation, giving her much needed hope.
Do you have a favorite fictional couple?