The Death of the love letter: Can love’s poetry survive in the age of emails, texts and tweets?
What does it mean for love, if we no longer write love letters? If a dashed-off, electronically sent sentence or two saying I’ll pick up milk on my way home is the contemporary equivalent of the multi-verse Byronic declaration of devotion?
“Something has certainly been lost to us,” says Andrea Clarke, curator of Early Modern Historical Manuscripts at the British Library in London and editor of Love Letters: 2000 Years of Romance, in which Bottomley’s missive appears.
“In an age of digital communication everything is so much more functional, ephemeral and two dimensional. What letters are, is loads of information waiting to be excavated.
“A love letter tells a story, from its physical dimensions to the way the words are laid down — you can imagine the person writing it.”