Elizabeth Taylor Tells First Fiance "I'll Never Love Anyone Else" In Letters

Illustration for article titled Elizabeth Taylor Tells First Fiance Ill Never Love Anyone Else In Letters

In May 60 love letters Elizabeth Taylor wrote when she was 17 to fiance William Pawley will be auctioned. Pawley sold the letters, which were written in 1949, two years ago. Taylor discusses taking high school exams, giving up her career to be a wife and mother, and declares,

"I've never known this kind of love before _ it's so perfect and complete _ and mature ... I've never loved anyone in my life before one third as much as I love you _ and I never will (well, as far as that goes _ I'll never love anyone else _ period)."

In September, she discusses returning her engagement ring. Less that eight months later, she was married to her first husband, Conrad Nicholson Hilton.

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stoprobbers
stoprobbers

I think it's fascinating how long marriage was used as a way to escape the binding family, not just for women like Elizabeth in 1949 but all the way up through the 1980's. Did you know that the only Jackson sibling to move out of the family home in Encino WITHOUT getting married was Michael? And in 1981 Ebony ran a magazine cover about him that basically says "21, unmarried, BUT HE PLANS TO BE SOMEDAY WE PROMISE."

I was reminded of all this when I was watching Biography's special extended program on Elizabeth the other night and she talked about how she married Nicky Hilton because she was so desperate to be out from under the thumb of her mother, her studio, everyone. It's just so strange to think about compulsive marriage as a liberating act. And yet, at one time, it kind of was. Especially when you were confident and comfortable enough to divorce your husband when it was clear the marriage was unhappy, public be damned.

Elizabeth was a badass.