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In Christian art, the white rose is a symbol of purity, the gold or yellow rose a symbol of impossible perfection and papal benediction, and the red rose a symbol of martyrdom.
She held the white rose carefully between a finger and thumb, not knowing if he was warning her-by giving her a forbidden thing-that -; he was the bringer of death, and she was being marked, or if it was a gesture of simple, if strange, kindness.
In 1451, the badge of a red rose began to be worn by the Beauforts and their party; a white rose by the Yorkists; whence these were termed "Wars of the Roses."
With a flick of a sharp-nailed finger, Mauvais sliced away the black velvet choker with its white rose cameo from around her throat, reclaiming his gift.