Discover all the different types of love in the world, from ancient Greek terms for love to modern types of love.

7 Types of Love, according to the ancient Greeks

The ancient Greeks had seven words for love that corresponded to different types of love, ranging from physical love (eros) to purely spiritual love (agape). Here are the seven kinds of love according to the ancient Greeks. 

1. Eros: Love of the body

Eros was the Greek God of love and sexual desire. He was shooting golden arrows into the hearts of both mortals and immortals without warning. The Greeks feared that kind of love the most because it was dangerous and could get them into the most trouble. Eros is defined as divine beauty or lust. Eros is mainly based on sexual attraction and it is where the term “erotica” came from.

Example of Eros love: A young couple that meets and immediately feels attracted, and lustful, towards one another.

2. Philia: Love of the mind

Also know as brotherly love, Philia represents the sincere and platonic love. The kind of love you have for your brother or a really good friend. It was more valuable and more cherished than Eros. Philia exists when people share the same values and dispositions with someone and the feelings are reciprocated.

Example of Philia love: Two friends talk about how deeply they understand each other, and how that security and openness causes them to feel comfortable and taken care of.

3. Ludus: Playful love

Ludus is the flirtatious and teasing kind of love, the love mostly accompanied by dancing or laughter. It’s the child-like and fun kind of love. If you think about it; this generation loves Ludus more than anything else.

Example of Ludus love: Modern love at its finest, Ludus love is best described by thinking of two people who just want to have fun together, with little need for security or roots.

4. Pragma: Longstanding love

The everlasting love between a married couple which develops over a long period of time. Pragma was the highest form of love; the true commitment that comes from understanding, compromise and tolerance. It is pragmatic this is why it is referred to as “standing in love” rather than “falling in love” because it grows over time and requires profound understanding between lovers who have been together for many years.

Example of Pragma love: Think about your grandparents, and how they have endured so much, but have always chosen each other.

5. Agape: Love of the soul

Agape love is selfless love, the love for humanity. It is the closest to unconditional love. The love you give without expecting anything in return reflected in all charitable acts. It is the compassionate love that makes us sympathize with, help and connect to people we don’t know. The world needs more Agape love.

Example of Agape love: The person in your life that is always giving to others, and needing nothing in return. This is the way they show their love, and this is the way they are energized through love. By giving all that they have, and all that they are, to those around them, they find beauty in life.

6. Philautia: Love of the self

The ancient Greeks divided Philautia into two kinds: There is one that is pure selfish and seeks pleasure, fame, and wealth often leading to narcissism and there is another healthy kind of love we give ourselves. Philautia is essential for any relationship, we can only love others if we truly love ourselves and we can only care for others if we truly care for ourselves.

Example of Philautia love: Selfish Philautia love is the kind of love that takes and does not give back in return — this is someone who only uses others to excel in life. Think about the social climbers of the world. On the other hand, the positive kind of Philautia can be seen in a couple that is a union, not a melting pot. They both do their own things, but they come together and support each others own growth.

7. Storge: Love of the child

Storge is the love parents naturally feel for their children. It’s based on natural feelings and effortless love. Storge is the love that knows forgiveness, acceptance and sacrifice. It is the one that makes you feel secure, comfortable and safe.

Example of Storge love: Think about the kind of love your mother gives you, or your very best friend. It is rooted in friendship, and understanding, but there is also a deep emotional connection there.

6 Types of Love, as we experience it today

 

1. New Love

Oh, this love is so fun. You don’t even realize you love them. It’s more of a ‘like,’ honestly, because you’d never admit to yourself it’s love. It’s not a deep love, but more of a “call me back, and also don’t get hit by a truck, thanks,” kind of love. But regardless, it’s a bundle of nerves and a whole bunch of fun at the same time. It’s miserable because it can be taken away so quickly, but you’re also just so damn hopeful it’ll last. It’s the cutest of love, next to old people love, which I’ll get to.

2. Routine Love

You’ve been dating for a while, and you love each other. It’s just a fact. There’s this cozy comfort in this person. Routine sounds like it’s a bad thing, but it’s really not. It’s simplicity. There’s no questioning. There’s really no hiding your feelings for each other and it’s great. They’re right there for you, and you’re right there back. There’s comfort in that.

3. Disgusting Love

Get a room, sickos.

4. Infatuation Love

You love the idea of this person. By god, you want them, but outside of that, there’s really no connection. This love is often fleeting, a whirlwind. There’s so much about this person that you want to be a part of of, but low and behold, there’s not much meat to the relationship now, is there? You love the thought of being with this person, and you want to be with them. But once you have them in your grasp, you realize that you aren’t quite meant for each other the way you thought. This kind of love can be the one that breaks your heart in the easiest way.

5. Friend Love

You want to love this friend, but it’s just not there. Like you love them, but you don’t love them. It’s just not there for you. You’d be perfect for each other, but they just don’t get it going for you, hence why you’re friends. But it’s okay. You provide a different support for each other than a lover ever could.

6. Fake Love

You want it to work so badly. But guess what? It doesn’t. So you force this idea onto yourself that this person is “good enough” for you and you are “good enough” for them, so you march along onto this syllabus that was handed to you during childhood about what you should be doing with your love life – fall in love, marriage, house, babies, etc. But not with this person maybe. No, cut it off and find yourself an “In It To Win It Love.”

 

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