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How the Wall-flower Came First, And Why So Called

by Robert Herrick, 1648

Why this flower is now call’d so,
List, sweet maids, and you shall know.
Understand, this firstling was
Once a brisk and bonnie lass,
Kept as close as Danaë was:
Who a sprightly springall lov’d,
And to have it fully prov’d,
Up she got upon a wall,
Tempting down to slide withal:
But the silken twist untied,
So she fell, and, bruis’d, she died.
Love, in pity of the deed,
And her loving-luckless speed,
Turn’d her to this plant we call
Now the flower of the wall.

Published in Hesperides

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