Scientists try to measure the power of love

A group of boffins at Aberystwyth Universe are wheeling out thermal imaging cameras to see if reading love poetry causes pulses to race, hearts to beat, cheeks to blush, and, er…

Dr Richard Marggraf Turley from the Department of English and Creative Writing and Professor Reyer Zwiggelaar from Computer Science will record whether volunteers reading love poems are moved by the words to heat up a lot.

The volunteers from the English department will read Bright Star by John Keats and To His Coy Mistress by Andrew Marvell. Then six volunteers from the science department will read the same poem.

Marggraf Turley, who won the Keat-Shelley poetry prize in 2007, insisted there’s a serious side to the experiment. “We hope to prove that there’s not only a cerebral dimension to reading love poetry but that it can also produce measurable physical effects,” he said.

Truly, we will discover whether love conquers all. Or not. Or maybe.