Dickens, a friend and keen supporter, described Lewes and Eliot as the ugliest couple in London (he was also the first to deduce that the author ‘George Eliot’ must be a woman). Eliot met Owen and Emerson when she moved to Coventry and encountered a circle of free-thinkers. As a journalist in London she met Carlyle, whom she admired greatly, Spencer, whom she fell for (unsuitably), Martineau, Thackeray and Browning. Liebig and Liszt (a real friend) were met in Germany. Turgenev (who stayed with her) and James befriended her admiringly. She met Wagner when he visited London, liking him more than his music.