by Robert Herrick

WHITE though ye be, yet, lilies, know,
From the first ye were not so ;
       But I'll tell ye
       What befell ye :
Cupid and his mother lay
In a cloud, while both did play,
He with his pretty finger press'd
The ruby niplet of her breast ;
Out of which the cream of light,
       Like to a dew,
       Fell down on you
And made ye white.
Bronzino. Venus, Cupid and Time (Allegory of Lust)
Bronzino. Venus, Cupid and Time.
(Allegory of Lust). 1540-45.
National Gallery, London.

Herrick, Robert. Works of Robert Herrick. vol I.
Alfred Pollard, ed.
London, Lawrence & Bullen, 1891. 89.

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