calf love

Puppy love

Puppy love is an informal term for feelings of love, particularly between young people during adolescence, so-called for its resemblance to the adoring, worshipful affection that may be felt by a puppy. The term is often used in a derogatory fashion, describing emotions which are shallow and transient in comparison to other forms of love such as romantic love.

Another use of the term (also commonly described as a "crush"), can be used to describe the love or lust of a child or adolescent for an adult. For example, a student being attracted to his or her teacher could be considered puppy love. The term may meet with resistance from some people as patronizing and belittling of genuine emotion.

Calf love

During Elizabethan times, it was known as calf love. A prominent example can be found in William Shakespeare's play Romeo and Juliet, in which a young man, Romeo Montague, is infatuated with a girl named Rosaline before finding true love with Juliet Capulet. In the second act, Romeo is chastised by his friend Friar Laurence, who claims his new love for Juliet illuminates the shallow nature of his feelings toward Rosaline:

Holy Saint Francis, what a change is here!
Is Rosaline, whom thou didst love so dear,
So soon forsaken? young men's love then lies
Not truly in their hearts, but in their eyes.

Popular culture

Canadian-American singer Paul Anka released the single "Puppy Love" in 1960, reaching #2 in the Billboard Hot 100 and #33 in the UK singles charts. The lyrics relate the plight of a seventeen-year-old taunted by accusations that feelings for his/her beau are "puppy love", ending with the refrain "How can I ever tell them this is not a puppy love?" The song was subsequently covered by Donny Osmond, staying at #1 in the UK for five weeks and reached #3 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1972.

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