10 Inspiring Literary Friendships
"A good friend is like a four leave clover, hard to find and lucky to have." -an Irish proverb
"Sweet friendships refresh the soul and awaken our hearts with joy." -Proverbs 27:9a (The Passion Translation)
Why are we drawn to certain people in friendship?
Is it something we see lacking in ourselves that is evident in them, like two puzzle pieces fitting together?
Or are we drawn to certain people because we share so many similarities?
Why are we drawn toward some, and repelled by others? It is an interesting thought to ponder, to be sure.
And while you sit and reflect on just that, here are 10 literary friendships to inspire your thoughts.
1. Sam and Frodo
If you've read The Lord of the Rings, you will understand why Frodo and Sam top my list of inspiring literary friendships. It's because of Sam. Sam is the unsung hero. He is faithful. Strong. Supportive. Loving. Humble. (The fact that he knows his way 'round a tater is icing on the cake.)
2. Legolas and Gimli
Never before has there been such an unlikely pairing and that is why I adore these two. Each looked past their own racial prejudice to the person in front of him. And each saw in the other the potential of true friendship. Of a brotherhood beyond the boundaries of race. An example to us all, don't you think?
3. Merry and Pippin
Oh my! Everyone needs a bosom buddy, someone they can kick back, goof off, and cause a ruckus with every once in a while. Someone you can fully be yourself with, toot in front of, and roll on the floor in hysterics about anything and everything. Frequent belly laughs and stifled giggles at inappropriate times are hallmarks of Merry's and Pippin's friendship. Life will always be better when you have a Merry and Pippin-type friend with whom to face the uncertain future.
4. Sherlock Holmes and John Watson
These two. Every John Watson needs a Sherlock give his life some adventure, to awaken him from the monotonous slumber that has become his life. Every Sherlock Holmes needs a Watson to give his life connection, grounding him to humanity, to help him interpret what's going on in the world when he cannot grasp it for himself. We need friends like Sherlock Holmes and Watson, friends that accept us, idiosyncrasies and all, and remain loyal even when the evidence doesn't stack in our favor.
5. Jane Eyre and Helen Burns
While Jane's and Helen's friendship is brief, it is a relationship that leaves a lasting impact nonetheless. Formed during adverse circumstances and galvanized by shared suffering, their friendship is true and pure and selfless and runs very, very deep. Their friendship was a spectacular and beautiful show of love and loyalty. Jane's and Helen's friendship shows us that not all friendships last, but they can have a lasting impact.
6. Elizabeth Bennet and Charlotte Lucas
Charlotte and Elizabeth's friendship is gold - you know, from the Joseph Parry poem-turned-tune: "Make new friends, but keep the old; Those are silver, these are gold." Theirs is a friendship that has stood the test of time and worked into a seamless familiarity akin to sisterhood. They are supportive, encouraging, truly desire the best for the other, and most importantly - forgiving. (I want to gush, but I will stop there. You will understand when you read it.)
7. Alice Henderson and Christy Huddleston
Thrown together by accident (or providence), Alice and Christy share what I would call a mentoring friendship - friends who have "gone there and done" that before you. Friends that help you find your way as you forge forward on the path of life. Friends that remember how hard it was to be your age (whatever your age may be) and do not judge you or impose their opinions on you. Friends that stick by you when life gets messy because the messiness of life doesn't spook them. Friends that take your hand and gently walk beside you, offering words of encouragement when needed and words of advice when asked.
8. Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, and Harry Potter
Ron, Hermione, and Harry share one of the longest literary friendships. Beginning in childhood and stretching far into adulthood, this trio has definitely stuck with one another through thick and thin. They have had one another's back, shown up to do the REALLY hard stuff, weathered the heaviest and most complicated that life (and death!) had to offer, welcomed the others into their family, and day-by-day saw to it that each became the best version of themselves.
9. Anne Shirley and Diana Barry
Anne and her bosom buddy Diana share a literary friendship that does not strike an obvious chord. Anne is...well, she's an opinionated drama queen that looks at life through idealistic lenses. (Don't hate me for being blunt.) Diana is a well-mannered, proper, "girl next door" that assumes life will unfold for her as it did her parents (and their parents before them). The two are dissimilar in every way. Polar opposites, yet their friendship works - for whatever reason. Friendships like theirs may be head-scratchers to those on the outside, but they help those on the inside to broaden their perspectives.
10. The March Sisters
Because sometimes your fortunate enough to be born into a family of friends.
What literary friendships have inspired you? And why? Please share your favorites in the comments. Who doesn't love a good buddy read?
And speaking of good buddies, have you entered the BUDDY GIVEAWAY yet? Win a book charm of your choice for you PLUS one for your buddy! Win-Win!
Winner will be announced Sunday, Feb. 28, 2021, via email. Good luck!
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Sam and Frodo are on the top of my list, too, and for many of the same reasons. Captain Jack Aubrey and Dr. Stephen Maturin are opposites in every way, including physically, except for a love of music and a fondness for toasted cheese, both of which they share, and yet they become as dear to each other as family in spite of the differences.