The World's Oldest Love Poem

The Love Song for Shu-Sin (written ca 2000 B.C.E.). The cuneiform tablet, found in Mesopotamia during excavation works in 19th century C.E., was taken to the Istanbul Museum (Turkey) where it remained stored (no 2461), untranslated and unknown until 1951, when the famous sumerologist Samuel Noah Kramer translated it. It seems that it was part of a sacred rite performed yearly and called "Sacred Marriage". Shu-Sin reigned as king in the city of Ur from 2037 to 2029 B.C.E., or according to another chronological order, between 1972 to 1964 B.C.E. It's translation is found in Kramer's work History Begins at Sumer, pp. 246-247.

The Love Songs of the Chester Beatty Papyrus (Love Songs from Ramesside Egypt)

Four songs in the Papyrus Harris (British Museum)

Love Songs of Ancient Egypt 

The Tale of Sinuhe and Other Ancient Egyptian Poems, 1940-1640 BC

Sanskrit Love Poetry

The Poetics of Eros in Ancient Greece

Interpreting the Song of Songs: The paradox of Spiritual and Sensual Love

Erotic Love Poems of Greece and Rome

Archilochos of Paros (680-645 B.C.E.) - the oldest lyric poet in Europe; Anacreon of Teos (ca 582-485 B.C.E.) - Greek lyric poet from Ionia

Women Writers of Ancient Greece and Rome: An Anthology

The Poetry of Sappho

A multispectral image of a papyrus fragment containing Sappho's new poems, "Brothers poem" & "Kypris Poem". Image credit: Prof. Dirk Obbink (Oxford University) - discoverer of the poems. Sappho of Lesbos (630-570 B.C.E.) was a Greek lyric poetess widely admired and studied in antiquity, in fact there were nine books of her works kept in the Library of Alexandria. Live Science January 23, 2015.

The Hymn to Eros in the tragedy Antigone by Sophocles (he taught it in the Great Dionysia in 442 B.C.E. and won the first prize). Verses 781-792.

Heroides and Amores by Ovid

Poems and Ballads, First Series: Historicity and Erotic Aesthetism

Persian Love Poetry

A Cosmos of Desire: The Medieval Latin Erotic Lyric in English Manuscripts

The Celtic legend of Tristan and Isolde

Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner (1865)

The Love Story of Lancelot and Guinevere

Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet by William Shalespeare (ca 1591-1595)


Eroticism and Byzantium (in Greek)

From Persia to Provence: Erotic Narrations in Late Byzantium (in Greek)

A Companion to English Renaissance Literature and Culture - ch. 35: Erotic Poems

Native American Love Poems

Rime in vita e morte di Madonna Laura (after 1327) by Francesco Petrarca

Shakespeare's Sonnets

The Poems of George Gordon Lord Byron (1788-1824)

Love Poems of Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822)

The Works of Emily Brontë

Jane Eyre by the English novelist and poet Charlotte Brontë (published on October 16, 1847)

Famous love poems of Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

The German Romanticism of the 19th century

Famous Love Poems of Classical and Contemporary Poets

Romantic Love Poems

Best Love Poems

Love Poems

Fifty greatest modern love poems list embraces 30 different countries

All Nobel Prizes in Literature

Academy of American Poets

The poems of Emily Dickinson (1830-1886)

The Love Letters of Victor Hugo (1820-1822)

Charles Baudelaire Love Poems

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (published between 1873 to 1877). According to a 2007 vote poll of Times: "the greatest book even written"

Romantic Poems from Russia

Words of Love: Passionate Women from Heloise to Sylvia Plath

À la recherche du temps perdu by Marcel Proust (1871-1922)

Poems of Love and Death by Federico García Lorca (1898-1936)

Love poems by the American artist Edward Estlin Cummings (1894-1962)

Poems of Nobel prize awarded Chilean Ricardo Eliécer Neftalí Reyes Basoalto aka Pablo Neruda (1904-1973)

Works of the influential artist and thinker Angela Anaïs Juana Antolina Rosa Edelmira Nin y Culmell aka Anaïs Nin (1903-1977)

Love in the Time of Cholera (1985) by Colombian Nobel Prize winner Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette aka Colette (1873-1954): The Collected Stories

Marina on the rocks. Prosanatolismoi, 1998. Poem by the Greek Nobel prize winner Odysseas Elytis (1911-1996); see also: The Collected Poems of Odysseas Elytis

Greek Erotic Poetry (in Greek)

Who is crazy in love? Erotic poetry from Solomos to Seferis (in Greek)

Out of Africa: A lyrical memoir of the Danish author Karen Dinesen Blixen (Isak Dinesen) - first published in 1937 in Denmark & England

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