lacking in romance. Not with eight marriages in her
True, two of those marriages were to the same man,
Richard Burton, who would seem to be her perfect mate. They were both headstrong, had tempers which could turn violent on occasion and neither one was short on ego. Consequently their marriages were far from boring.
Elizabeth's first marriage was to Nicky Hilton, heir to
the Hilton hotel fortune, when she was nineteen. The marriage was a short one. Her next two husbands were Michael Wilding and Michael Todd. Todd was the only one she didn't divorce; he was killed in an airplane accident. By the time of his death she was already said to be having an affair with Eddie Fisher, at that time married to Debbie Reynolds. The two couples had been close friends and after Todd's death the affair became more open. Public sentiment was definitely aligned behind Debbie Reynolds as the wronged woman and Taylor was cast in the role of home-wrecker. Eddie Fisher divorced Debbie and married Elizabeth but was soon to discover that he wasn't going to be the man to hold the violet eyed beauty.
Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor were signed to the
movie Antony and Cleopatra. Burton was a Welshman, a great Shakespearean classical actor who could have been the next Olivier if he hadn't succumbed to the pitfalls of a hard driving lifestyle. Taylor was considered to be one of the most beautiful women in the world and also a talented actress. They fell under each other's spells instantly. It was reported that their first on screen kiss went on long after the call of "cut''.
They married after their respective divorces were processed and remained married for ten years, often in the headlines for their wild and rollicking lifestyles, and for the lavish gifts of jewellery Burton showered on Taylor. Their quarrels were loud and public and ended in reconciliation after reconciliation. Both Burton and Taylor suffered from
addictions. He was an alcoholic and she was addicted to prescription painkillers as well as having alcohol problems. But their biggest addiction seems to be to each other. After ten years of volatility they divorced, unable to live together
any longer. But difficult as it was to live together they found it just as difficult to be apart. In a little over a year they remarried, this time for only a few months before divorcing again. Burton commented once on their relationship "You can't keep clapping a couple of dynamite sticks together
without expecting them to blow up."
Richard Burton was married twice more after divorcing
Taylor. She also married two more times, once to John Warner, an American senator and once to Larry Fortenski, a younger man she met in rehab.
Burton died at the age of 58 of a cerebral hemorrhage. Elizabeth Taylor reportedly fainted when told of his death. She lived on, often in ill health and with many hospital stays and operations, until 2011 when she died at the age of 79. Even in her senior years, suffering from ill health and the consequences of her addictions, she remained a symbol of beauty and romance to the world.