Oxford University Press's
Academic Insights for the Thinking World

Love stories of America’s founding friends

On Valentine’s Day, we usually think of romance and great love stories. But there is another type of love we often overlook: love between friends, particularly between men and women in a platonic friendship. This is not a new phenomenon: loving friendships were possible and even fairly common among elite men and women in America’s founding era. These were affectionate relationships of mutual respect, emotional support, and love that had to carefully skirt the boundaries of romance. While extravagant declarations of love would have raised eyebrows, these friends found socially acceptable ways to express their affection for one another. Learn more about some special pairs of platonic friends from early America, including some very familiar names.

Featured image: Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, Howard Chandler Christy (1940). Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

Recent Comments

There are currently no comments.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *