Study Guide

Outlander Love

By Diana Gabaldon

Love

"If you ever did… Claire, it would make no difference to me. I love you so. Nothing you ever did could stop my loving you." (1.189)

Frank is totally in love with Claire, but is he only saying this because he's made transgressions of his own and wants the same love and forgiveness from Claire? How do you think Frank would react if Claire did return from the past, married to another man and carrying his baby? Hi honey, I'm home…

I turned toward him. "I don't hate you." "I don't hate you, either." (15.253)

This is as close as Jamie and Claire get to saying I love you on their wedding night. It's actually a great start considering their marriage was arranged last minute.

Met one month, married one day. Bound by vows and by blood. And by friendship as well. When the time came to leave, I hoped that I would not hurt [Jamie] too badly. (16.96)

Although Claire hasn't said it yet, we're pretty sure she loves Jamie already. That's why she's so concerned about hurting his feelings when she returns to the time period she came from.

"It means 'my brown one.' […] Mo duinne." (16.231)

Pet names are a key part of love, and this is one of the handful Jamie has for Claire. It sounds plain (what about 'my plaid one,' huh, you Scottish brute?), but he explains that brown is actually a very rich color.

"I risked my life for ye, committing theft, arson, assault, and murder. […] In return for which ye call me names, insult my manhood, kick me in the ballocks and claw my face. Then I beat you half to death and tell ye all the most humiliating things have ever happened to me, and you say ye love me." (22.213)

Why does Claire tell Jamie she loves him (for the first time, no less) after all this? Why does she feel closer to him, and not farther from him, after he has beaten her so hard she can barely ride a horse?

"I bloody well can't do without you, Jamie Fraser, and that's about it." (25.494)

This is the point where we realize that Claire's love for Jamie is true… and eternal. She decides to stay in 1743, instead of returning to the 1900s, mainly because she loves him and wants to stay with him.

[Jenny] stepped into [Jamie's] embrace, and the rough bright head bent to the dark. (26.251)

Here's a little non-romantic love for you, although the love between Jamie and his sister Jenny isn't any less passionate. They fight like crazy when reunited, but only because they love each other so much. Jamie Fraser, the fiery Scotsman, doesn't do anything half-way, not even love, no matter who he loves.

One never stops to think what underlies romance. Tragedy and terror, transmuted by time. Add a little art in the telling, and voila! a stirring romance, to make the blood run fast and the maidens sigh. (35.226)

Do you agree with this formula for romance? It definitely works for Claire and Jamie.

And was there love there? Beyond the limits of flesh and time, was all love possible? Was it necessary? (38.147)

Claire ponders this as she sits and has a conversation with God… or at least a Presence with a capital P who might be God. She considers both extremes: that there is no love, and that there is all love. Are the two concepts really all that different?

"He made love to me, Claire. He hurt me—hurt me badly—while he did it, but it was an act of love to him." (39.35)

Jamie is talking about Randall here. Do you believe Randall's raping Jamie was an act of love in his twisted mind? Is Randall even capable of love?