Famous Lovers and Matching Pairs
14 year-old Prince Khurram (Shah Jahan) was walking by the stalls of Mena Bazaar in the year 1607. He saw a girl whose beauty enchanted the young prince, and he asked his father to marry the girl immediately. The Emperor Jahangir loved his son so much that he approved of the marriage. However, the Prince was still too young, thus the wedding was postponed for few years, during which the love was blooming in the hearts of the lovebirds.
According to the tradition, the emperor had several other wives but he was particularly attached to Mumtaz Mahal, perhaps because she was the wittiest, most beautiful and intelligent of all. Arjumand Bano Begum (the real name of the wife) was awarded with the title of ‘MUMTAZ MAHAL’, which means ‘the jewel of the palace’. They say that no decision related to the court, finance or other aspect of country’s management would go without the consent of Mumtaz Mahal. Courtiers did not like this at all but the two were so much in love with each other that they did not had the time to take care of such thoughts of the people.
The emperor’s love for his wife kept growing day by day, he did not leave her alone even for a second. Legend has it that Begum Mumtaz Mahal used to accompany her husband to each and every place, an inseparable couple. However this was not destined to last forever... Mumtaz Mahal felt ill and died. To immortalize his love for wife, Shah Jahan built the most magnificent building in her name. The majestic Taj Mahal still stands tall and strong as one of the Seven Wonders of the World, also recognized as UNESCO world heritage site.
Salvador Dalí and Gala
Behind every great man there’s a great woman
Helena Ivanovna Diakonova met Salvador Dalí in 1929 and it was a love at first sight.
In his Secret Life, Dalí wrote: “She was destined to be my Gradiva, the one who moves forward, my victory, my wife”. Gala immediately became the muse of the eccentric master, and appeared in his legendary works frequently and variously, often in religious roles such as the Blessed Virgin Mary in the painting The Madonna of Port Lligat.
In the early 1930s, Dalí started to sign his paintings with his and her name as “it is mostly with your blood, Gala, that I paint my pictures”. Gala acted as his agent, fighting vigorously for Dalí’s rights with gallery owners and buyers. She was also using tarot cards to influence Dalí’s career decisions as they say.
No matter rumors and details, the union between the Artist and his Muse seemed harmonic and lucrative for both sides.
‘Forever is you and me’
Gala’s selfless devotion to her master not only made him a happy loved man and prolific artist, but also resulted in a number of iconic paintings to mesmerize the world for centuries to come. ‘I would polish Gala to make her shine, make her the happiest possible, caring for her more than myself, because without her, it would all end.’ – wrote Dalí.
Orpheus and Eurydice
Love stronger than death
Finally Orpheus decided to descend to the underworld to find his wife. He played his lyre so divinely, that even the heart of Hades - the god of the underworld - would melt. Hades told Orpheus that he could take his love with him under one condition... Eurydice would follow him while walking out to the light from the caves of the underworld, but he should not look at her before coming out to the light or else he would lose her forever. If Orpheus was patient, he would have Eurydice again by his side, alive.
A strong and patient man like himself, Orpheus was thrilled that the task of reviving his love was so easy. However, when they started to walk out of the caves, he could not hear Eurydice’s footsteps as she was just a shadow, and he feared that the gods fooled him. When it was nothing but few steps away from the exit, Orpheus eventually lost his faith and turned to see if Eurydice was there, but her shadow was whisked back among the dead, now trapped forever in the underworld.