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Photograph by James L. Stanfield
The Love Collection
At National Geographic, we know that love takes many forms. Passion for the planet, lust for learning, natural instincts, and good old-fashioned romance—we celebrate them all.

Talk about a meet cute: She was deaf. He was her speech therapist … And then he went on to invent the telephone (and the tetrahedral kite, a good place to plant one on your wife).

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Photograph courtesy Library of Congress
National Geographic Magazine

For the first time, research has begun to illuminate where love lies in the brain and the particulars of its chemical components. Love or lust—which one is strong enough to send us to a tattoo parlor?

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Photograph by Jodi Cobb

"Despite all this change, the massive Colorado River Delta is still one of the most wild and beautiful places betwixt source and sea." One man’s mission to save the Colorado is a labor of true love.

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Photograph by Pete McBride
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Weird and Wild

A pair of froghoppers caught in the act more than 165 million years ago proves that some things never change.

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Photograph by Li S, Shih C, Wang C, Pang H, Ren D

Buss. Neck. Nuzzle. Snog. Pet. There are as many words for kissing as there are types of kisses. Here are a few of our favorite smoochy shots from the National Geographic archives.

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Photograph by Jodi Cobb

Sounds Good.

Music moves people of all cultures, in a way that doesn’t seem to happen with other animals. Nobody really understands why listening to music—which, unlike sex or food, has no intrinsic value—can trigger such profoundly rewarding experiences.

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"There we were, so different, a California surfer kid and an Ecuadorian girl from a conservative family. Shortly after we met we were knocking over trays and bottles as we made out under the dim red lights of the darkroom, hiding from professors and photo students."

See what develops

Photographs by Ivan Kashinsky
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National Geographic Magazine

Birds do it. Bees do it. Even pollinating plants do it.

Go ahead, take a peek

Photograph by Martin Oeggerli
National Geographic Traveler Magazine

Writer Joyce Maynard took a journey through her father’s paintings and into his past.

Follow along

Photograph by Aaron Huey
National Geographic Magazine

What happens when you spend hundreds of hours observing lions in the Serengeti? You see nature taking its course: "We observed six weeks of almost nonstop mating."

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Photograph by Michael Nichols
Your Shot

How do you define "love"? According to your pictures on our Your Shot community, in 12,269 (and counting) different ways.

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Photograph by Pradeepan Saha
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Weird and Wild

Flirting, Animal Style.

Looking to up your game? The wild kingdom has some kinky tactics that will definitely win you attention—good or bad. (We make no promises.)

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The elaborate courtship dance of the Wahnes’s parotia, a New Zealand bird of paradise, is a real draw for the ladies.



Valentine’s Day: The Naked Truth.

Where did Valentine's Day come from? (Think naked Romans, paganism, and whips.) What does it cost? And why do we fall for it, year after year?

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Happy Valentine's Day
Produced by Caitlin Reiss, Chris Moore, Kate LaRue and Nancy Gupton. Quality assurance by Emily Shenk.