페이지 이미지

Cloth'd us unworthy, pitying while he judg'd. How much more, if we pray him, will his ear 1060 Be

open, and his heart to pity incline, And teach us further by what means to shun Th’ inclement seasons, rain, ice, hail, and

snow, Which now the sky with various face begins To show us in this mountain, while the winds 1065 Blow moist and keen, shattering the graceful locks Of these fair spreading trees, which bids us seek Some better shroud, some better warmth to cherish Our limbs benumb’d, ere this diurnal star Leave cold the night, how we his gather'd beams Reflected may with matter sere foment, Or by collision of two bodies grind The air attrite to fire, as late the clouds Justling or push'd with winds rude in their shock Tine the slant lightning, whose thwart flame driv'n Kindles the gummy bark of fir or pine, [down And sends a comfortable heat from far, Which might supply the sun.

Such fire to use, And what may else be remedy or cure To evils which our own misdeeds have wrought, He will instruct us praying, and of grace




1071 foment] Virg. Æn. i. 175.

• Suscepitque ignem foliis, atque arida circum
Nutrimenta dedit, rapuitque in fomite ilammam.'

Hume. 1078 fire] ‘Be tired with holy fire.' Quarles' Emblems,

P. 293.

1076 or pine) Fenton and Bentley read and pine.'



Beseeching him, so as we need not fear
To pass commodiously this life, sustain'd
By him with many comforts, till we end
In dust, our final rest and native home.
What better can we do, than, to the place
Repairing where he judg'd us, prostrate fall
Before him reverent, and there confess
Humbly our faults, and pardon beg, with tears
Watering the ground, and with our sighs the air
Frequenting, sent from hearts contrite, in sign
Of sorrow unfeign’d and humiliation meek?
Undoubtedly he will relent and turn
From his displeasure, in whose look serene,
When angry most he seem'd and most severe, 1095
What else but favour, grace,


mercy shone? So spake our father penitent, nor Eve Felt less remorse : they forthwith, to the place Repairing where he judg’d them, prostrate fell Before him reverent, and both confess'd Humbly their faults, and pardon begg’d, with tears Watering the ground, and with their sighs the air Frequenting, sent from hearts contrite, in sign Of sorrow unfeign’d and humiliation meek.


1091 Frequenting] Tempesting. Bentl. MS. so in line 1103.





THE Son of God presents to his father the prayers of our first parents now repenting, and intercedes for them: God accepts them, but declares that they must no longer abide in paradise; sends Michael with a band of cherubim to dispossess them; but first to reveal to Adam future things: Michael's coming down. Adam shows to Eve certain ominous signs; he discerns Michael's approach; goes out to meet him: the angel denounces their departure. Eve's lamentation. Adam pleads, but submits: the angel leads him up to a high hill; sets before him in vision what shall happen till the flood.

Thus they in lowliest plight repentant stood
Praying, for from the mercy-seat above
Prevenient grace descending had remov'd
The stony from their hearts, and made new flesh
Regenerate grow instead, that sighs now breath'd
Unutterable, which the spirit of prayer
Inspir'd, and wing'd for heaven with speedier flight
Than loudest oratory : yet their port
Not of mean suitors, nor important less
Seem'd their petition, than when th' ancient pair 10
In fables old, less ancient yet than these,

11 In fables old] Fables told this. Bentl. MS.

Deucalion and chaste Pyrrha, to restore
The race of mankind drown'd, before the shrine
Of Themis stood devout. To heav'n their prayers
Flew up, nor miss'd the way, by envious winds 15
Blown vagabond or frustrate : in they pass'd
Dimensionless through heav'nly doors; then clad
With incense, where the golden altar fum'd,
By their great Intercessor, came in sight
Before the Father's throne : them the glad Son 20
Presenting, thus to intercede began.

See, Father, what first fruits on earth are sprung
From thy implanted grace in man, these sighs
And prayers, which, in this golden censer mix'd
With incense, I thy priest before thee bring,
Fruits of more pleasing savour from thy seed
Sown with contrition in his heart, than those
Which his own hand manuring all the trees
Of paradise could have produc'd, ere fall’n
From innocence. Now therefore bend thine ear 30
To supplication, hear his sighs though mute;
Unskilful with what words to pray, let me
Interpret for him, me his advocate
And propitiation ; all his works on me
Good or not good ingraft, my merit those
Shall perfect, and for these my death shall pay.
Accept me, and in me from these receive
The smell of peace toward mankind, let him live



15 envious] Ov. Met. x. 642.

Detulit aura preces ad me non invida blandas.

[ocr errors]




Before thee reconcil'd, at least his days Number'd, though sad, till death, his doom(which I To mitigate thus plead, not to reverse), To better life shall yield him, where with me AU my redeem'd may

dwell in joy and bliss : Made one with me as I with thee am one.

To whom the Father," without cloud, serene.
All thy request for man, accepted Son,
Obtain, all thy request was my decree:
But longer in that paradise to dwell
The law I gave to nature him forbids :

pure immortal elements, that know No

gross, no unharmonious mixture foul, Eject him tainted now, and purge him off As a distemper, gross to air as gross, And mortal food, as may dispose him best For dissolution wrought by sin, that first Distemper'd all things, and of incorrupt Corrupted. I at first with two fair gifts Created him endow'd, with happiness And immortality: that fondly lost, This other serv'd but to eternize woe, Til I provided death ; so death becomes His final remedy, and after life Try'd in sharp tribulation, and refin'd By faith and faithful works, to second life, Wak’d in the renovation of the just, Resigns him up with heaven and earth renewid. But let us call to synod all the blest [hide Thro’ heaven's wide bounds; from them I will not VOL. II.


[ocr errors]



« 이전계속 »