Belinda is presented by Pope in "The Rape of the Lock" as a bundle of contradictions. This makes her not just a more interesting character, but also a reflection of the society in which she lives. First and foremost, Belinda is a ravishingly beautiful young lady, her beauty a source of wonderment and admiration to men and women alike. Her very name comes from the Latin for "lovely to behold." Pope often describes Belinda in gushing superlatives such as "the brightest fair" and "the fairest of mortals."
Belinda is acutely aware of her extraordinary beauty and the equally extraordinary effect it has on people. She is the center of attention wherever she goes, most notably during her pleasure ride down the Thames, her bright smile and eyes shining like the sun:
Bright as the sun , her eyes the gazers strike ,
And, like the sun , she shines on all alike.
Not surprisingly, with all this natural beauty and the attention it brings, Belinda is a rather vain, superficial young lady. She worships at the feet of beauty, and, as she's the very embodiment of the that beauty, she worships herself as intently as everyone else does. Though self-assured, Belinda's value system seems more than a tad confused. She ostentatiously keeps a copy of the Bible on her dressing table along with all her powders, creams, and hairbrushes. It's as if Belinda treats the Word of God as just another fashion accessory, a means of showing off to people how devout she is. But placing a Bible next to a pile of love letters indicates just how shallow this attachment to religion really is.
Belinda's childishness, vanity, and superficiality come out even more strongly when the Baron relieves her of one of her pretty locks. Belinda lives by the code of beauty; her whole life is utterly devoted to it. Without her lovely lock of hair she feels no longer beautiful. It is then, however, that Belinda undergoes a stark transformation. In her implacable wrath and thirst for vengeance, she's no longer innocent; no longer a goddess walking upon the earth, but a real human being: fallen, vulnerable, and subject to the vicissitudes of everyday life.