[The Outer Court of the Temple, Detail of Model]from The Temple (1633), by George Herbert:


¶   The Foil.

                                     IF we could see below
The sphere of vertue, and each shining grace
               As plainly as that above doth show;
This were the better skie, the brighter place.

                                     God hath made starres the foil
To set off vertues; griefs to set off sinning:
               Yet in this wretched world we toil,
As if grief were not foul, nor vertue winning.


Music Interpretation: "The Foil" by Red Dragon To open music in another window. 

Modern version
1633 Poem Index Links to Criticism George Herbert & The Temple Home Page