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This essay analyses the declarations of love in six popular romantic novels written by female Australian writers published in the latter half of the nineteenth century. By doing so, it seeks to explore the effect of the colonial Australian setting on the ways in which romantic love is imagined and constructed in the texts. Drawing on the work of Monique Scheer, who argues that emotions are practised as well as experienced, and that fictional representations can operate as templates for these practices, this essay sheds light on the emotional and romantic history and culture of colonial Australia.