Top 10 Literary Leading Men
Every girl has her list of literary crushes. Below is mine.
- Fitzwilliam Darcy – Pride & Prejudice
He is a diamond in the rough. At first he is cold & distant. Once he decideds that Elizabeth is the one, and that he was a class A jerk for proposign the way he did, he does everything in his power to prove to her that he truely loves her, and will do everything in his power to protect her and her family even from scandal. He never makes a mistake twice.
- Gilbert Blythe – Anne of Green Gables
What school boy doesn’t make a fool of himself infront of his crush. He gives up his position for Anne after Mathew dies, just so that Anne can be close to home. He is lovable, and yes it might take him almost dying for Anne to realize she loves him. He never wavered from what he wanted. He is dedicated to bettering himself by perpetual study, and after he stops teaching he goes to medical school. He is devoted to Anne through their life together, and is an excellent father to his and Anne’s childern.
- Aragorn II Elessar – Lord of the Rings
A rugged tracker, hunter, master at herb lore and healing, a great negotiator, a just leader, and above all a kind and loyal partner. He knows where his heart is, and despite being tempted by others, he lets girls whose hearts he has stolen down as easily as possible. Add to that he’s an uncrowned king who ages gracefully? He is devoted to Arwen to the point of being willing to give her up to save her from the pain of him dying and her living eternally with out him.
- Edmund Bertram – Mansfield Park
He is good, kind, decent, absolutely loyal, unwilling to wound, sensible. He sees Fanny as a sister, and it’s not until he finds that Mary Crawford will never accept him for the man he is, that he realizes that Fanny has been supporting him all along despite any heartbreak she may incur. Fanny who knows from the first she can never love a man who would play with the affections of women, wishes only happiness to her beloved cousin. In the end Edmund realizes that Fanny is everything he could wish for and that love was right in front of him all the time.
- George Knightley – Emma
A gentleman to the core, he treats everyone both rich and poor with respect. He sees through the shallow people, and isn’t afraid to let those close to him (Emma) know when they are being shallow. He raises people up, and always thinks through everything he does and will do something he finds unpleasant such as dancing to ensure that the bully doesn’t win. Lastly he doesn’t assume that just because he loves Emma that she automatically returns his feelings.
- Theodore ‘Laurie’ Laurence – Little Women
Further down the list he is the boy next door. He loves Jo, and is smart, eloquent and a great friend to all the March Girls. Sadly he gives up too easily and loses out on his first choice (jo). Luckily enough, he eventually does marry into the March family via Amy the youngest of the March girls. Sadly I believe neither Jo or Laurie turned out happy in their respective marriages, but Laurie is and always will be among my top 10.
- John Thornton – North and South
A hard working man who is proud of what he has accomplished, he tries to do best for those who rely on him even if he is brought to see it through another. He brings out the best in Margaret, and inspires her to become better, while allowing her to make him a better person as well.
- Edmond Dantès – The Count of Monte Cristo
Before his imprisonment, Edmond Dantès is a kind, innocent, honest, and loving man. Though naturally intelligent, he is a man of few opinions, living his life instinctively by a traditional code of ethics that impels him to honor his superiors, care dutifully for his aging father, and treat his fellow man generously. Dantès is filled with positive feeling, admiring his boss, Monsieur Morrel; loving his father; adoring his fiancée, Mercédès; and even attempting to think kindly of men who clearly dislike him.
While in prison, however, Dantès undergoes a great change. He becomes bitter and vengeful as he obsesses over the wrongs committed against him. When his companion, Abbé Faria, dies, so too does Dantès’s only remaining deep connection to another human being. Dantès loses the capacity to feel any emotion other than hatred for those who have harmed him and gratitude toward those who have tried to help him. He moves through the world like an outsider, disconnected from any human community and interested only in carrying out his mission as the agent of Providence. It is not until Dantès finds love again, in a relationship with Haydée, that he is able to reconnect to his own humanity and begin to live humanly again.
- Jean Valjean – Les Misérables
Jean Valjean is transformed from who he was into someone much greater by the power of his love and forgiveness. At the beginning of the story, you might pity him, but he isn’t someone you necessarily want to emulate. At the end, even Javert recognizes that Valjean is someone great. He is someone that almost everyone can relate to at some point. He is a great leading man as he will commit a crime to take care of those he loves, take the punishment given out, and then try to redeem himself. He might be a bit on the oblivious side at times, but once he realizes he has wronged, he tries his best to make it up to you. He is devoted to a child that is not his, and charitable to a fault in his effort to redeem his past sins. While he can be a bit overprotective, he also realizes when he is in the wrong, and will admit it.
- Westley – The Princess Bride
Three Words. As you wish. What woman doesn’t dream of her true love saying these words growing up?
Westley is soft spoken, and selfless. He is polite, and just the word please saves him. He returns for his love, a dashing pirate, and is witty. I believe even if Buttercup had been a hag he would have returned for her and True Love.