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Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn's relationship timeline

The Lavender Haze singer dated the Conversations with Friends actor for six years

Left: Taylor Swift at the Grammys Right: Joe Alwyn
Hannah Watkin
Content Writer
Updated: 19 April 2024
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Taylor Swift's longest relationship to date, with Joe Alwyn, has officially been memorialized in the singer's eleventh studio album, The Tortured Poets Department. But as fans speculate about what caused the six-year relationship to come to an end, it's also important to ask: where did it all begin?

The 'All Too Well' singer – whose sold-out Eras Tour has taken the world by a storm - and the UK-born Conversations with Friends star were a notoriously private couple, and as a result little is known about their time together.

Taylor and Joe at an awards ceremony, sat looking over to the left while leaning into each other© Getty Images
Taylor and Joe in January 2020

However, over the years small details hinting at the origins and continued strength of their relationship seeped out either through lyrics on the singer-songwriter's albums; references made by the boyfriend and girlfriend to each other in interviews; or moments shared between the two of them during rare public appearances together.

Therefore, although "saying goodbye is death by a thousand cuts," join HELLO! as we take a look back at all we know about Taylor and Joe's secretive six-year romance.

How did Taylor Swift meet Joe Alwyn?

Neither Taylor Swift nor Joe Alwyn have ever officially confirmed the details of their first meeting. However, based on the lyrics from her Reputation track 'Dress' (believed to be about her relationship with The Favourite actor) fans have deduced that it's likely the couple first met in May 2016, at the 'Manus X Machina' themed Met Gala that year.

Taylor with bleached blonde hair, dark lipstick and a silver scaled dress, posing on a red carpet© Getty Images
Taylor's 'Bleachella' look at the Met Gala

The line: "Flashback to when you met me, your buzzcut and my hair bleached" perfectly describes how both Taylor and Joe appeared that evening while attending the event, so fans have put two and two together to assume it was at the glittery NYC event that they met.

When did Taylor Swift start dating Joe Alwyn?

The answer to the question of when the couple started dating is even less certain.

MORE: Taylor Swift's boyfriend Joe Alwyn breaks internet as he shares rare picture with one of her best friends

Joe Alwyn with a buzzcut, wearing a suit on the red carpet at the Met Gala© Getty Images
Joe at the 2016 Met Gala

Following the 2016 Met Gala, the 'Getaway Car' singer got into a very public relationship with Marvel star Tom Hiddleston, but sometime in mid-to-late 2016 this came to an end. Soon after we can assume she started seeing Joe – but we have no idea of the exact timeline of events.

It was only in 2017 that rumors began to circulate that the pair were officially an item. Then, in November 2017 following the release of Taylor's sixth album Reputation, which featured several love songs that appeared to reference Joe, fans considered the couple pretty much confirmed. (In addition to 'Dress,' other probable Joe tracks included 'Call It What You Want' and 'Gorgeous'.)

Taylor and Joe walking through a crowd with security around them, keeping their heads angled down, they are holding hands© Getty Images
The couple often avoided making public appearances

In May 2018, these same fans went into a frenzy when Joe and Taylor independently posted photos of themselves alone, but standing next to the same cactus – clearly suggesting that they had visited the spot together and taken each other's photos while there.

Then, in September 2018, Joe finally broke the couple's silence on their relationship, telling British Vogue: "I’m aware people want to know about that side of things," when he was asked about his rumored relationship with Taylor. "I think we have been successfully very private and that has now sunk in for people…but I really prefer to talk about work," he finished.

A crowd of faces sat watching an awards ceremony, Joe and Taylor in the mid-distance in focus, smiling© Getty Images
Taylor and Joe at the 2020 Golden Globe Awards

Taylor and Joe were then spotted holding hands at the 2019 BAFTAs, and again spent the whole of the 2020 Golden Globes together – even though they had arrived separately.

Is Taylor Swift married to Joe Alwyn?

No, Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn never married. However, for several years there have been rumors circulating that they might have tied the knot.

Taylor stood on a high platform singing on her tour, she is wearing a lavender colored coat and is surrounded by purple clouds and lighting© Getty Images
Taylor performs Lavender Haze on tour in 2023

As Taylor addressed in her recent single 'Lavender Haze', newspapers, magazines and the media at large regularly sought information regarding whether Taylor and Joe had wed. "All they keep asking me is if I'm gonna be your bride" Taylor sang, further criticizing this attitude by repeating "No deal, the 1950s [expletive] they want from me".

READ: Conversations With Friends star reveals Taylor Swift's reaction to intimate scenes with boyfriend Joe Alwyn

However, while the Pennsylvanian-born musician disliked the focus people gave to the topic, Taylor wasn't against hinting that marriage could be in the cards for the couple. In several songs on her seventh album Lover (which is widely understood to have been inspired by her relationship with so-called 'London Boy' Joe), the 33-year-old made reference to wanting to tie the knot.

Taylor smiling to the left as she walks off stage holding her AMA award© Getty Images
Taylor winning an AMA for her album Lover

In 'Paper Rings', her chorus features the repeated line "I like shiny things but I'd marry you with paper rings" while in 'I Think He Knows' Taylor sings "I think he knows he better lock it down, or I won't stick around as good ones never wait".

DISCOVER: Joe Alwyn's £7 million London townhouse with girlfriend Taylor Swift revealed

But as the Grammy winner has regularly emphasized, although her songs do draw from personal experience, they also often are made up of fictionalized scenarios and ideas – so we can't say for sure that Taylor is making a reference to the idea of Joe proposing to her in these tracks.

Taylor Swift speaking into a mic while holding a Grammy, her team celebrating behind her© Getty Images
Taylor winning Album of the Year for Folklore

Following the Taylor's release of Lover and her subsequent cancelling of her planned Loverfest tour as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, Taylor and Joe settled down to live as boyfriend and girlfriend throughout quarantine. During this time, Taylor released two new albums: Folklore and Evermore, both of which featured collaborations with an artist referred to as William Bowery – who was later revealed to be Joe Alwyn himself.

Joe also contributed to Midnights, but when fans didn't see the actor around when Taylor began her Eras Tour in March 2023, some began to worry about the pair's relationship.

Marriage is certainly a theme of Taylor's latest record, The Tortured Poet's Department, as she sings in "So Long, London" - the song most obviously about Joe: "You swore that you loved me but where were the clues? I died on the altar waiting for the proof."

Are Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn still together?

In early April 2023, ET first reported that Taylor and Joe broke up in March 2023. The pair's split was reportedly "amicable" and "not dramatic," sources told the entertainment news website, before going on to say that "the relationship had just run its course." The article also claimed that the split was "why [Joe] hasn't been spotted at any shows."

Taylor Swift on stage surrounded by hundreds of fans, her light pink dress billowing behind her© Getty Images
Taylor is currently touring around the US

While some fans are still holding out hope that perhaps the news is untrue, the majority have now come to terms with it as a factual report – especially as they have come to notice subtle hints which Taylor may have made about the split prior to the news breaking in April.

Neither Taylor nor Joe have made any public comment regarding whether they have split, but with the two having always stayed incredibly private regarding their relationship, it is very unlikely that we will hear anything from them in the future to confirm or deny the split which is believed to have occurred.

Taylor Swift singing on stage with a guitar surrounded by the set of an overgrown house© Getty Images
Fans believe her tour setlist might have hinted at the pair's split

However, HELLO! has reached out to Taylor's team for comment.

How long were Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn together?

As there is little information regarding exactly when the pair started dating, it's impossible to know exactly how long the A-listers were actually together.

WATCH: Taylor reveals how Lavender Haze links to her relationship with Joe

However, we do know for a fact that Taylor and Joe were together for at least six years, as the singer herself confirmed this in a recent video which explored the meaning behind her Midnights album single 'Lavender Haze'.

While it is equally unclear when exactly Taylor and Joe broke up, it is likely the split happened sometime soon prior to or during the early few weeks of Taylor's US tour.

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