Look at this picture; what do you see?
It is a familiar subject; two lovers in warm embrace, the man’s faint smile met by the woman’s earnest entreat. There is however, a fatal twist.
Note the white sash she holds at his arm, as it is in this small detail that their doom is revealed. By imploring him to wear the sash, she asks him to declare allegiance to the Catholic Church and as a Huguenot (French Protestant) he refuses, gently removing it with the same hand that embraces her.
Thirty five thousand Huguenots refused to wear white armbands on that day in 1572, and they were murdered in the streets.
“I could not love thee, Dear, so much, loved I not Honour more.”
– Richard Lovelace
In moments like this we find the very soul of romantic love. It is a divine light that brightens the existence of a lucky few, but to be worthy of it comes at great cost, sometimes death. She loves him for his noble heart and it is the very thing that will take him from her.
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