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Too much to one but double how endurd
To one, and to his image now proclaim'd ?
But what if better counsels might erect
Our minds, and teach nx to cast off this yoke
Will ye submit your necks, and choose to benu
The supple knee ? Ye will not, if I trust
To know ye right, or if ye know yourselves
Natives and sons of heaven possess'd before
By none; and if not equal all, yet free,
l qually free ; for orders and degrees
Jar 'not with liberty, but well consist.
Who can in reason then, or right, assume
Monarchy over such as live by right
Hiis equals ; if in power and splendour less,
In freedom equal ? or can introduce
Law and edict on us, who without law
Err not? much less for this to be our Lord,
and look for adoration, to the abuse
Of those imperial titles, which assert
Our being ordain'd to govern, not to serve.

" Thus far his bold discourse without control
Had audience : when ainong the seraphim
Abdiel, than whom none with more zeal ador'd
The Dei y and divine commands obeyed,
Stood up, and in a flame of zeal severe
The current of his fury thus oppos'd :

"• argument blasphemous, false, and proud W'ords which no ear ever to hear in heaven Expecter, least of all from thee, ingrate, en place thyself so high above thy peers, Canst thou with impious obloquy condemn The jase decree of God, pronounc'd and sworn. That to his only Son, by right endued ll'ith regal sceptre, every soul in heaven Shall bend the knee, and in that honour due Confess him rightful King ? linjust, thou sap'st Flatly injust, to lind with lary the free, and equal over eqna's to let reign, One over all with unsucceeded power.

BOOK Khalt thou give law to find ? straft mori dispute With him the point of liberty, who made thee what thou art, and form'a the powers of

heaven Such as he pleas?d, and circumscrib'd their being Yet, by experience taught, we know how good; And of our good and of our dignity How provident he is; how far from thought To make us less, bent rather to exalt Our happy state, under one head more neat United. But to grant it thee unjust; That equal over equals monarch reign : Thyself, thotgh great and glorious, dost thou county Or all angelic nature join'd in one, Equal to him begotten Son ? by whoin, As by his word, the Mighıy Father made All things, even thee; and all the spirits of heaveta By him created in their bright degrees, Ozown'd them with glory, and to their glóry nam Thrones, dominationis, printedoms, virtues, powers; Essential powers; nor by his reign obscuir'd, But more illustrious made ; since he the head, One of our number thus reduc'd becomes; His laws our laws; all honout 10 him dono Keturns our own: Cease then this impious ragon And ttmpt not these : but basten to appease The incensed Father, and the incensed Sun, While pardon may be found in time besought.'

“ So spake the fervent angel; but his zeal None seconded, as ont of seasoti judg'd, Or singular and rash : whereat rejoic'd The Apostate, and more haughty, thus replied: “That we were form'd then, say'st thou ? and

the work Of secondary hands, by task trångfërr'' From Father to his Son ? strange point and new! Doctrine which we would know whente learn'd.

#l:n lain When thuis creation was temothber'it thote

Thy making, while the Maker gave thee being
We know no time when we were not as now;
Know none before us, self-begot, self. raisa
By our own quickening power, when fatal course
Had circled his fun ort), the birth mature
Of this our native heaven, ethereal sör.s.
Our puissance is our own: our own right hand
Shall teach us highest deeds, by proof to try
Who is our equal : then thou shalt behold
Whether by supplication we intend
Address, and to begirt the almighty throno
Beste hing or besieging. This report,
These tidings carry to the anointed King;
And fly, ere evil intercept thy flight.'

“ He said ; and, as the sound of waters deep
Hoarse murmur echoed to his words applause
Through the infinite hust; nor less for that
The flaming seraph fearless, though alone
Encompass'd round with foes, thus answer'd bold ,

• alienate from God, O spirit accurs'd, Forsaken of all good! I see thy fail Determin’d, and thy bapless crew involv'd. In this perfidious fraud, contagion spread Both of thy crime and punishment: henceforth No more be troubled how to quit the yoke Of God's Messiah ; those indulgent laws Will not be now vouchsaf'd; other decrees Against thee are gone forth without recall : That golden scepire, whicb thou didst reject, Is now an iron rod to bruise and break Thy disobedience. Well thru didst advise : Yet not for thy advice or threats 1 Ay These wicked tents devoted, lest the wrath, Impendent, raging into sudden flame, Distinguish not : for soon expect to feel His thunder on thy head, devouring fire. Then who created thee lamenting learn, When who can uncreate thee thou shalt know

“ So spake the seraph Abdiel, faithful found

Among the faithloks, faithful only he :.
Among innumerable false, unmovido
Unshaken, unseduc'd, unterrified,
His loyalty he kept, bis love, his zeal;
Nor number, nor example, with him wrought
To swerve from truth, or change his constant mind,
Though single. From amidst them forth he pass'd,
Long way through hostile acorn, which he sustain's
Superior, nor of violence feared aught;
And with retorted scorn, bis back he turn'd
On thobe proud towers to swift destruction doom'de

BOOK VI.

THE ARGUMENT. Raphael continues to relate how Michael and Gabriel were sent forth to battle against Satan and his angels. The first fight described : Satan and his powers retire under night ; le calls a council; invents devilish engines, which, in the second day's fight, put Michael and his angels to some disorder; båt they at length, pulling up mountains, overwhelm both the force and machines of Satan: yet, the tumult not so ending, God, on the third day, sends Messiah his Son, for whom he had reserved the glory of that victory. He, in the power of his Father, coming to the place, and causing all his legions to stand still on either side, with his chariot and thunder driving into the midst of his enemies, pursues them, una ble to resist, towards the wall of heaven; which opening, they .eap down with horror and confusion into the place of pu nisha ment prepared for them in the deep: Messiah returns with triumph to his Father.

“ ALL night the dreadles angel, impursued, Through heaven's wide champain held his way;

till Morn, Wak'd by the circling Hours, with rosy hand Vnbarr'd the gates of light. There is a cave Within the mount of God, fast by his throne, Where light and darkness in perpetual round Lodge and dislodge by turns, which makes through

heaven Grateful vícissitude, kike day and night ; Light issues forth, and at the other door Obsequious darkness enters, till her hour {vel: To veil the heaven, though darkness there might Seem twilight here ; and nove went forth the morn Such as in highest heaven, array'd in gold Empyreal; from before her vanish'd night, J.lot through with orient beams; when a!) the

plain Cover*d with abiek embatt!ed squadrons bright,

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