Friday, December 18, 2009
Wow this is sad.
Marguerite - I am afraid that all is over and we must be separated for a long time. I will keep faithfully every promise and hope; you will also; God bless my dearest and only love. Philip.
(The ad says "faith fully" but I think that was either a typo or they didn't spell faithfully as one word back then, because that makes much more sense.) Now I don't know if it's coincidence or not, but I was intrigued by the names (I can't imagine that "Marguerite" was all that common in America at that time) so I looked them up, and it turns out there kind of sort of was a Marguerite and Philip once upon a time. Marguerite de Valois was a daughter of Catherine de'Medici who married Henry of Navarre (aka Henry IV, King of France). But her sister married Philip II of Spain! So, kind of?
So it's possible that this just happened to be a couple whose names were really Marguerite and Philip - or they were using pseudonyms. Does this mean that "Philip" was somehow forced to marry "Marguerite's" sister? Except Marguerite de Valois' unrequited love was also named Henry (according to my trusty Wikipedia), so that doesn't really work either.
Oh well, all of this is totally besides the point. The point is, this personal makes me sad! It's just heartbreaking! Philip sounds so hopeless. I wonder what happened to force them apart? Cruel parents? Maybe one or both of them are married and their vengeful exes are refusing to give a divorce - something quite difficult to procure at the time without really, really, really good reason. I don't know. But I wish more of these personals were happy. It's depressing to read how many of these people's love affairs failed sometimes.
Speaking of, I'm sort of considering online dating. Would that be weird? How do you tell a person you meet through the personals that your (current) life's work is studying personals and you keep a blog in which you kind of make fun of the people who posted them?
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©2009 Pam Epstein