TV & Movies

The Eros & Psyche Reference In Bridgerton Might Reveal A Part 2 Twist

It’s all adding up.

Colin and Penelope on 'Bridgerton.' Photo via Netflix

Colin and Penelope are quite a literary couple. He’s a budding travel writer, and she’s the ton’s go-to gossip columnist. So perhaps it’s no surprise that Bridgerton uses a story from Ancient Greco-Roman literature to represent Polin’s romantic journey in Season 3.

To recap: During Episode 4, Queen Charlotte hosts a ball that features a ballet of Eros and Psyche from Greek mythology. “Perhaps this little love play will inspire my lovers tonight,” she says of the dreamy performance.

Indeed, Penelope tears up as she watches the dancers act out a passionate story. Clearly, she’s reminded of her own feelings for Colin.

And she’s not the only one. Later, Cressida and Lord Debling are dancing when they observe Colin and Penelope having a lover’s quarrel. “They do seem upset, do they not? Eros and Psyche battling it out,” Cressida says.

So, are Colin and Penelope really like Eros and Psyche?

Eros & Psyche’s Story

Eros is the god of love (aka Cupid in Roman mythology), and Psyche is an extremely beautiful princess — so beautiful that Eros’ mom, Aphrodite, is jealous. As told in Roman writer Apuleius’ Metamorphoses, or The Golden Ass, Aphrodite tells her son to give Psyche a potion that will thwart her potential romances.

But when trying to do so, Eros accidentally sticks himself with his own arrow, which famously makes people fall in love.

DEA / V. PIROZZI/De Agostini/Getty Images

Later, when Psyche isn’t having any luck with suitors, an oracle tells her family she’s destined to be with a monster. When she goes to marry this monster, it’s actually Eros! But she doesn’t know this, because he only meets her in the dark.

At her sisters’ urging, Psyche tries to get a better look at Eros to see if he really is a monster. However, he’s put off by her doubt (“Love cannot dwell with suspicion,” he says) and flies away.

Ultimately, after performing a series of tasks for Aphrodite, Psyche gets back together with Eros, and they have an immortal marriage. (Yay!) The main beats of this weird little story seem to align with Colin and Penelope’s relationship — and could tease what’s to come.

Liam Daniel/Netflix

Like Eros, Colin tries to meddle with Penelope’s romantic life and ends up falling in love himself. He prevents her from marrying a “monster” (no offense to Lord Debling, you’re just fine!) and offers himself as a partner instead, but doubt threatens to pull them apart. Surely, the reveal of Penelope’s secret identity as Lady Whistledown might cause Colin to get a little flighty in Part 2, right?

And perhaps Penelope, like Psyche, will have to make some major moves in order to win him back — or alleviate the wrath of Queen Charlotte, who’s never been a big Lady Whistledown fan and is the closest thing the ton has to an all-powerful goddess.

More Mythological Easter Eggs

There have been other nods to Eros and Psyche’s story throughout Bridgerton Season 3. In Episode 1, Gregory is playing with the bow Colin gave to him, and he points it right at his brother, seemingly foreshadowing Colin falling in love with Penelope.


And the butterfly motif that Penelope’s been sporting since Season 1? Aristotle called the butterfly “psyche,” associating the insect with the Greek word for “soul.” So it seems this Bridgerton reference goes quite deep.