Friday, February 8, 2013

Who is Cupid?




In Roman mythology, Cupid is the god of love; the son of Venus.  The representation of Cupid is as a naked cherubic boy, usually having wings and holding a bow and arrow, used as a symbol of love. 

Cupid's Attributes

In describing the attributes of Cupid,  Isidore of Seville (d. 636 AD) summarizes the common interpretation of antiquity: Cupid is winged because lovers are flighty and likely to change their minds, and boyish because love is foolish and irrational. His symbols are the arrow and torch, "because love wounds and inflames the heart." Cupid is often depicted blindfolded and described as blind, not so much in the sense of sightless—since the sight of the beloved can be a spur to love—as blinkered and arbitrary. As described by Shakespeare in A Midsummer Night's Dream:

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,
And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
Nor hath love's mind of any judgement taste;
Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste.
And therefore is love said to be a child
Because in choice he is so oft beguiled

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