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Top 10 Author Couplings When creative geniuses come together, the sparks can’t help but fly (if only temporarily). Case in point: these ten lit couples.

1. George Sand & Alfred de Musset
When French Romantic poet Alfred de Musset met novelist George Sand (the nom de plume of Amandine-Aurore-Lucile Dupin), the affair inspired some of his best works, including a juicy fictionalized account of their relationship. However, just a year later, in 1834, the couple's fairy-tale trip to Venice ended in disaster--both became severely ill and Sand fell in love with her doctor, leaving a heart-broken de Musset to return to France alone. Guess Doc had the magic touch.

2. Jean-Paul Sartre & Simone de Beauvoir
The poster couple for free-loving '60s hippies: These famous, vertically-challenged swingers--er, authors--became an item in 1929. But de Beauvoir refused to marry Sartre, turning him down some four times. Instead, the authors became an imaginary married couple. Despite the stigma their open marriage caused, the relationship fostered stellar careers for both. The two are buried side-by-side in the Cimetière du Montparnasse in Paris.

3. Sylvia Plath & Ted Hughes
America's poetic sweetheart met the British Poet Laureate at a magazine launch party in Cambridge. Their courtship was hot and heavy and they wed four months later in 1956. Splitting their time between their two home countries, things fell awry for the literary lovebirds because of Hughes' wandering eye. In 1962, Plath moved out of their London flat with their children, Frieda and Nicholas, before committing suicide (note: Gwyneth Paltrow and Daniel Craig deliver fierce portrayals of the dueling writers in the film, Sylvia). Controversy still looms over Hughes' role as executor of his estranged wife's manuscripts, including the final volume of her journal about their last few months together, which Hughes claimed to have destroyed.

4. Robert Browning & Elizabeth Barrett Browning
The esteemed Victorian poets met their respective muses (each other!) in 1845, when she was living as a semi-invalid in her father's house on London's famous Wimpole Street. As Barrett's father disapproved of any of his children getting married, the couple eloped in September 1846. They lived in Pisa and soon settled in Florence, at the Casa Guidi, now a museum. The couple had one son, nicknamed Pen, in 1849 and the family bought a home near Venice. Sadly, Elizabeth died in her husband's arms of respiratory failure on June 29, 1861.

5. Virginia Woolf & Leonard Woolf
It was a case of opposites attract: She was from an upper-crust, well-respected family; he was a less affluent guy from a family of ten children. Nonetheless, they wed in 1912 and Virginia confided the secret to their marriage bliss: lots of steamy sex! The Bloomsbury Group, of which the couple was a part, wasn't much for monogamy though and Virginia had a romantic relationship with writer and gardener Vita Sackville-West throughout the '20s. This affair provided inspiration for Virginia's fantastical Orlando, which has been dubbed one of the longest, sweetest love letters of all time.

6. Francis Petrarch & "Laura"
The beloved Italian poet was set to become a priest, but shortly after leaving the vocation--and on Good Friday at that!--he laid eyes on the breath-taking Laura. The brief meeting spawned Song Book, a collection of 366 of Petrarch's mushiest rhymes. Petrarch and Laura weren't actually a real couple--she turned his invitation to meet down, and rightly so, as she was married! In fact, it's even been speculated that she represents Petrarch's love of fame (her name is derived from the laurel bestowed to ancient poets). The rejected Petrarch fuelled his passion into his poetry, where the unattainable Laura inspires both mystic joy and devastating grief in the poet.

7. Dante & Beatrice
Dante's epic journey through hell, purgatory and heaven takes its inspiration from Beatrice, whom he met when he was but nine years old while strolling the streets along the Arno in his hometown, Florence (a meeting made famous by Henry Holiday's painting). The smitten poet saw the fair Beatrice often after the age of 18, but the two never really got past polite hellos. Beatrice's death in 1290 at just 24 devastated Dante (though he later married), but Beatrice remained for him the symbol for a revolutionary literary vessel of spiritual love, and she's a major player in his celebrated Divine Comedy (where she appears in heaven, of course!). Love-haters have claimed that Beatrice never even existed, but it's since been settled that she was the daughter of an Italian aristocrat.

8. Percy Bysshe Shelley & Mary (Wollstonecraft Godwin) Shelley
This story is quite the scandal: Percy, the radical writer, and Mary, a talented writer in her own right at the time, fled to France in 1814, leaving behind his knocked-up wife! Of course, Mary's father disapproved because of Percy's radical ways and shallow pockets. But complications followed them like a shadow, with Percy often having to leave town to dodge creditors and Mary often being ill and pregnant (we see a pattern here) while her husband was off with her step-sister. While Percy encouraged his wife to take up a lover (even suggesting friend and fellow writer, Thomas Jefferson Hogg), her liberalism had its boundaries, and she could only bring herself to flirt with Hogg. A sojourn in Geneva, and her husband's encouragement, led to Mary penning her tale about that famed monster, Frankenstein. After Percy drowned in a sailing accident, Mary retrieved his heart and kept it her whole life. Creepy and romantic.

9. Truman Capote & Jack Dunphy
At first glance, the long-term partners are an odd couple: Dunphy was ten years older and an introvert; Capote was an idiosyncratic, flamboyant extrovert (see Bruce Greenwood's film, Capote). The pair met in 1948, when Dunphy was coping with the aftermath of a bitter divorce (to a fellow dancer). Two years later, they moved into a house where D.H. Lawrence once lived, in the picturesque city of Taormina, in Sicily. Toward the end of their lives, the Breakfast at Tiffany writer and the Too Close for Comfort playwright drifted apart; however they remained a couple until Capote's death in 1984.

10. F. Scott Fitzgerald & Zelda (Sayre) Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby scribe described Zelda Sayre as the "golden girl" of Montgomery, Alabama's upper crust. Engaged in 1919, the couple moved to the Big Apple to start their life together, but Fitzgerald's meager income as a short story writer left Sayre feeling uneasy, and she broke things off. The couple later wed nonetheless and settled back in Alabama. After he penned a little book called This Side of Paradise, the lovebirds headed back to NYC, where they basked in their penchant for the finer things in life. But problems again arose with Sayre's schizophrenia in 1930 and Fitzgerald's alcoholism. Fitzgerald died of a heart attack in 1940, and his wife eight years later in a fire in the mental hospital in which she had been institutionalized. Their grave in Rockville, Maryland, is inscribed with the last line of The Great Gatsby: "So we beat on, boats against the current, borne back ceaselessly into the past".

Which author couples are your favourite? Share below!