The Abdication Crisis
The Lovers: King Edward VIII of United Kingdom, and Wallis Simpson, an American socialite.
The Gesture: The British throne. Let's get one thing straight right off the bat: King Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson were horrible human beings, who openly sympathized with the Nazi Party. But even monsters fall in love, and this list would simply not be complete without any mention of Edward's sacrifice for his lady. Edward succeeded his father as King in 1936, and swiftly voiced his intentions to marry Simpson. You can imagine how thrilled the Brits were about the idea of a twice-divorced, Nazi-sympathizing, non-royal American as their monarch—not very. Forced to choose between his throne and his lover, Edward abdicated and these two disgusting people lived happily ever after as Duke and Duchess of Windsor.