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PARADISE LOST.

BOOK VIIT.

THE ARGUMENT,

Adam inquires concerning celestial motions; is doubtfully answered, and erhorted to search rather things more worthy of knowledge : Adam assents, and, still desirous to detain Raphael, relates to him what he remembered since his own creation, his placing in Paradise, his talk with God concerning solitude and fit society, his first meeting and nuptials with Eve; his discourse with the angel thereupon, who, after admoni. tions repeated, departs.

THE angel ended, and in Adam's ear

And Raphael now, to Adam's doubt propos'd, So charming left his voice, that he awhile

Benevolent and facile thus replied :

65 Thought him still speaking, still. stood fix'd to hear:

“ To ask or search I blame thee not, for heaven Then, as new wak'd, thus gratefully replied: Is as the book of God before thee set,

Wherein to read his wondrous works, and learn “ What thanks sufficient, or what recompense 5 His seasons, hours, or days, or months, or years; Equal have I to render thee, divine

This to attain, whether heaven move or earth, 70 Historian! who thus largely hast allay'd

Imports not if thou reckon right; the rest The thirst I had of knowledge, and vouchsaf'd From man or angel the great Architect This friendly condescension,

to relate

Did wisely to conceal, and not divulge
Things else by me unsearchable, now heard 10 His secrets to be scann'd by them who ought
With
wonder, but delight, and, as is due,

Rather admire; or if they list to try

75 With glory attributed to the high

Conjecture, he his fabric the heavens Creator? Something yet of doubt remains,

Hath left to their disputes, perhaps to move Which only thy solution ca. resolve.

His laughter at their quaint opinions wide When I behold this goodly frame, this world,

15 Hereafter, when they come to model heaven Of heaven and earth consisting, and compute And calculate the stars, how they will wield SO Their magnitudes, this earth a spot, a grain, The mighty frame, how build, unbuild, contrive An atom, with the firmament compar'd

To save appearances, how gird the sphere And all her number'd stars, that seem to roll With centric and eccentric scribbled o'er, Spaces incomprehensible (for such

20 Cycle and epicycle, orb in orb ¿ Their distance argues and their swift return Already by thy reasoning this I guess

85 Diurnal,) merely to officiate light

Who art to lead thy offspring, and supposest Round this opacous earth, this punctual spot, That bodies bright and greater should not serve One day and night, in all their vast survey

The less not bright, nor heaven such journies run, Useless besides; reasoning, I oft admire, 25 Earth sitting still, when she alone receives How Nature, wise and frugal, could commit

The benefit. Consider first, that great

90 Such disproportions, with superfluous hand Or bright infers not excellence: the earth So many nobler bodies to create,

Though, in comparison of heaven, so small,
Greater so manifold, to this one use,

Nor glist'ring, may of solid good contain
For ought appears, and on their orbs impose 30 More plenty than the sun that barren shines,
Such restless revolution, day by day

Whose virtue on itself works no effect,

95 Repeated, while the sedentary earth,

But in the fruitful earth; there, first receiv'd, That better might with far less compass move,

His beams, unactive else, their vigour find.
Serv'd by more noble than herself, attains

Yet not to earth are those bright luminaries
Her end without least motion, and receives, 35 Officious, but to thee, earth's habitant.
As tribute, such a sumless journey brought

And for the heaven's wide circuit, let it speak 100
Of incorporeal speed, her warmth and light; The Maker's high magnificence, who built
Speed, to describe whose swiftness number fails.” So spacious, and his line stretch'd out so far;

That man may know he dwells not in his own; So spake our sire, and by his count'nance seem'd An edifice too large for him to fill, Ent'ring on studious thoughts abstruse, which Eve Lodg'd in a small partition, and the rest 105 Perceiving, where she sat retir'd in sight 41 Ordain'd for uses to his Lord best known With low liness majestic from her seat,

The swiftness of those circles attribute, And grace that won who saw to wish her stay, Though numberless, to his omnipotence, Rose, and went forth among her fruits and flowers, That to corporeal substances could add

109 To visit how they prosper'd, bud and bloom, 45 Speed almost spiritual: me thou think'st not slow, Her nursery; they at her coming sprung,

Who since the morning hour set out from heaven And, touch'd by her fair tendance, gladlier grew. Where God resides, and ere mid-day arriv'd Yet went she not, as not with such discourse In Eden; distance inexpressible Delighted, or not capable her ear

By numbers that have name.

But this I urge, Of what was high : such pleasure she reserv'd, 50 Admitting motion in the heavens, to show 115 Adam relating, she sole auditress;

Invalid that which thee to doubt it mov'd; Her husband the relater she preferr'd

Not that I so affirm, though so it seem Before the angel, and of him to ask

To thee who hast thy dwelling here on earth. Chose rather; he, she knew, would intermix God, to remove his ways from human sense, Grateful digressions, and solve high dispute 55 Plac'd heaven from earth so far, that earthly sight, With conjugal caresses; from his lip

If it presume, might err in things too high, 121 Not words alone pleas'd her. (O! when meet And no advantage gain. What if the sun now

Be centre to the world, and other stars, Such pairs, in love and mutual honour join'd ?) By his attractive virtue and their own With goddess-like demeanour forth she went, Incited, dance about him various rounds ? 125 Not unattended, for on her as queen

CO Their wand'ring course now high, now low, then A pomp of winning graces waited still,

Progressive, retrograde, or standing still, And from about her shot darts of desire

In six thou seest; and what if seventh to these Into all eyes to wish her still in sight.

The planet earth, so steadfast though she seem,

[hid,

Insensibly three different motions move? 130 Abundantly his gifts hath also pour'd, 220
Which else to several spheres thou must ascribe, Inward and outward both, his image fair :
Mov'd contrary with thwart obliquities,

Speaking or mute, all comeliness and grace
Or save the sun his labour, and that swift

Attends thee, and each word each motion forms; Nocturnal and diurnal rhomb supposid,

Nor less think we in heaven of thee on earth Invisible else above all stars, the wheel 135 Than of our fellow-servant, and inquire 225 Of day and night; which needs not thy belief, Gladly into the ways of God with man; If earth, industrious of herself, fetch day

For God we see hath honour'd thee, and set Travelling east, and with her part averse

On man his equal love : say therefore on; From the sun's beam meet night, her other part For I that day was absent, as befell, Still luminous by his ray. What if that light, 140 Bound on a voyage uncouth and obscure, 230 Sent from her through the wide transpicuous air Far on excursion toward the gates of hell; To the terrestrial moon be as a star

Squar'd in full legion (such command we had) Enlight'ning her by day, as she by night

To see that none thence issued forth a spy, This earth reciprocal, if land be there,

Or enemy, while God was in his work, Fields and inhabitants. Her spots thou seest 145 Lest he, incens'd at such eruption bold, 235 As clouds, and clouds may rain, and rain produce Destruction with creation might have mix'd. Fruits in her soften'd soil, for some to eat

Not that they durst without his leave attempt, Allotted there; and other suns perhaps

But us he sends upon his high behests With their attendant moons thou wilt descry For state, as Sov'reign King, and to inure Communicating male and female light, 150 Our prompt obedience. Fast we found, fast shut Which two great sexes animate the world,

The dismal gates, and barricado'd strong; 241 Stord in each orb perhaps with some that live: But, long ere our approaching, heard within For such vast room in Nature unpossess'd

Noise, other than the sound of dance or song, By living soul, desert and desolate,

Torment, and loud lament, and furious rage. Only to shine, yet scarce to contribute

155 Glad we return'd up to the coasts of light 245 Each orb a glimpse of light convey'd so far

Ere sabbath evening: so we had in charge. Down to this habitable, which returns

But thy relation now; for I attend,

(mine." Light back to them, is obvious to dispute.

Pleas'd with thy words, no less than thou with But whether thus these things, or whether not; Whether the sun predominant in heaven 160 So spake the godiike power, and thus our sire: Rise on the earth, or earth rise on the sun;

“For man to tell how human life began 250 He from the east his flaming road begin,

Is hard; for who himself beginning knew? Or she from west her silent course advance,

Desire with thee still longer to converse With inoffensive pace that spinning sleeps

Induc'd me. As new wak'd from soundest sleep, On her soft axle, while she paces even,

165 Soft on the flowery herb I found me laid And bears thee soft with the smooth air along'; In balmy sweat, which with his beams the sun 255 Solicit not thy thoughts with matters hid,

Soon dried, and on the reeking moisture fed. Leave them to God above, him serve and fear; Straight toward heaven my wond'ring eyes I turn'd, Of other creatures, as him pleases best,

And gaz'd awhile the ample sky; till rais'd Wherever plac'd, let him dispose : joy thou 170 By quick instinctive motion up I sprung, In what he gives to thee, this Paradise

As thitherward endeavouring, and upright 260 And thy fair Eve; heaven is for thee too high Stood on my feet; about me round I saw To know what passes there; be lowly wise : Hill, dale, and shady woods, aud sunny plains, Think only what concerns thee and thy being; And liquid lapse of murm'ring streams; by these, Dream not of other worlds, what creatures there Creatures that liv'd and mov'd, and walk'd, or Live, in what state, condition, or degree, 176

264 Contented that thus far hath been reveal'd,

Birds on the branches warbling; all things smil'd; Not of earth only, but of highest heaven."

With fragrance, and with joy my heart o'erflow'd.

Myself I then perus'd, and limb by limb To whom thus Adam, clear'd of doubt, replied: Survey'd, and sometimes went, and sometimes ran “ How fully hast thou satisfied me, pure

180 With supple joints, as lively vigour led : Intelligence of heaven, angel serene!

But who I was, or where, or from what cause, 270 And, freed from intricacies, taught to live,

Knew not: to speak I tried, and forthwith spake: The easiest way, nor with perplexing thoughts My tongue obey'd, and readily could

name To interrupt the sweet of life, from which

Whate'er I saw. Thou sun,' said I, 'fair light, God hath bid dwell far off all anxious cares, 185 And thou enlighten'd earth, so fresh and gay, And not molest us, unless we ourselves (vain. Ye hills, and dales, ye rivers, woods, and plains, Seek them with wand'ring thoughts, and notions And ye that live and move, fair creatures, tell, 276 But apt the mind or fancy is to rove

Tell, if ye saw, how came 1 thus, how

here? Uncheck'd, and of her roving is no end ;

Not of myself; by some great Maker then, Till warn'd, or by experience taught, she learn, 190 In goodness and in power pre-eminent; That not to know at large of things remote,

Tell me how may I know him, how adore, 280 From use obscure and subtle, but to know

From whom I have that thus I move, and live, That which before us lies in daily life,

And feel that I am happier than I know.' Is the prime wisdom; what is more, is fume, While thus I call'd, and stray'd I knew not whither, Or emptiness, or fond impertinence,

195 From where I first drew air, and first beheld And renders us in things that most concern This happy light, when answer none return'd, 285 Unpractis'd, unprepar'd, and still to seek.

On a green shady bank, profuse of flowers, Therefore from this high pitch let us descend Pensive I sat me down; there gentle sleep A lower flight, and speak of things at hand

First found me, and with soft oppression seiz'd Useful, whence haply mention may arise 200 My droused sense, untroubled, though I thought Of something not unseasonable to ask,

I then was passing to my former state

290 By sufferance, and thy wonted favour deign'd. Insensible, and forth with to dissolve; Thee I have heard relating what was done

When suddenly stood at my head a dream,
Ere my remembrance; now hear me relate Whose inward apparition gently mov'd
My story, which perhaps thou hast not heard ; 205 My fancy to believe I yet had being,

294 And day is yet not spent; till then thou seest And liv'd. One came, methought, of shape divine, How subtly to detain thee I devise,

And said, 'Thy mansion wants thee, Adam, rise Inviting thee to hear while I relate,

First man, of men innumerable ordain'd Fond, were it not in hope of thy reply:

First ther! call'd by thee I come thy guide For while I sit with thee I seem in heaven, 210 To the garden of bliss, thy seat prepard. And sweeter thy discourse is to my ear

So saying, by the hand he took me rais'd, 300 Than fruits of palm-tree, pleasantest to thirst And over fields and waters, as in air And hunger both, from labour, at the hour

Smooth sliding without step, last led me up Of sweet repast; they satiate, and soon fill 214 A woody mountain; whose high top was plain, Though pleasant; but thy words, with grace divine A circuit wide enclos'd; with goodliest trees 304 Imbued, bring to their sweetness no satiety." Planted, with walks and bowers, that what I saw

Of earth before scarce pleasant seem'd. Each tree To whom thus Raphael answer'd heavenly meek: Loaden with fairest fruit, that hung to th' eye “ Nor are thy lips ungraceful, sire of meni

Tempting, stirr'd in me sudden appetite Nor tongue ineloquent; for God on the

To pluck

and eat whereat I wak'd, and found

flew;

Before mine eyes all real, as the dream 310 So well converse, nor with the ox the ape; 338
Had lively shadow'd. Here had new begun Worse then can man with beast, and least of all.'
My wand'ring, had not he, who was my guide
Up hither, from among the trees appear'd,

“Whereto th' Almighty answer'd, not displeas'd : Presence divine. Rejoicing, but with awe, A nice and subtle happiness I see In adoration at his feet I fell

315 Thou to thyself proposest, in the choice 400 Submiss: he reard me, and, 'Whom thou Of thy associates, Adam, and wilt taste sought'st I am,

No pleasure, though in pleasure, solitary. Said mildly, ' Author of all this thou seest

What think'st thou then of me, and this my state? Above, or round about thee, or beneath.

Seem I to thee sufficiently possess'd This Paradise I give thee, count it thine

Of happiness, or not? who am alone

405 To till, and keep, and of the fruit to eat: 320

From all eternity, for none I know Of every tree that in the garden grows

Second to me or like, equal much less. Eat freely with glad heart; fear here no dearth; How have I then with whom to hold converse, But of the tree whose operation brings

Save with the creatures which I made, and those Knowledge of good and ill, which I have set To me inferior, infinite descents

410 The pledge of thy obedience and thy faith, 025 Beneath what other creatures are to thee? Amid the garden by the tree of life, Remember what I warn thee, shun to taste,

“ He ceas'd; I lowly answer'd: 'To attain And shun the bitter consequence: for know, The height and depth of thy eternal ways The day thou eat'st thereof, my sole command All human thoughts come short, Supreme of Transgress'd, inevitably thou shalt die, 330

things; From that day mortal, and this happy state Thou in thyself art perfect, and in thee 415 Shalt lose, expellid from hence into a world Is no deficience found ; not so is man, Of wo and sorrow.' Sternly he pronounc'd

But in degree, the cause of his desire, The rigid interdiction, which resounds

By conversation with his like, to help Yet dreadful in mine ear, though in my choice 335 Or solace his defects. No need that thou Not to incur; but soon his clear aspect

Shouldst propagate, already infinite,

420 Return'd, and gracious purpose thus renew'd : And through all numbers absolute, though one; Not only these fair bounds, but all the earth But man by number is to manifest To thee and to thy race I give; as lords

His single imperfection, and beget Possess it, and all things that therein live, 340 Like of his like, his image multiplied, Or live in sea, or air, beast, fish, and fowl.

In unity defective, which requires

425 In sign whereof each bird and beast behold

Collateral love, and dearest amity.
After their kinds; I bring them to receive

Thou in thy secresy, although alone,
From thee their names, and pay thee fealty Best with thyself accompanied, seek'st not
With low subjection; understand the same 345 Social communication, yet, so pleas'd,
Of fish within their wat'ry residence,

Canst raise thy creatures to what height thou wilt Not hither summon'd, since they cannot change Of union or communion, deified;

431 Their element, to draw the thinner air?

I by conversing cannot these erect As thus he spake, each bird and beast behold From prone, nor in their ways complacence find.' Approaching two and two, these cow'ring low 350 Thus i embolden'd spake, and freedom us'd With blandishment, each bird stoop'à on his Permissive, and acceptance found, which gain'd wing. This answer from the gracious voice divine :

436 I nam'd them, as they pass'd, and understood Their nature, with such knowledge God endued « « Thus far to try thee, Adam, I was pleas'd, My sudden apprenension : but in these

And find thee knowing, not of beasts alone, I found not what methought I wanted still; 355 Which thou hast rightly nam'd, but of thyself, And to the heavenly vision thus presumid:

Expressing well the spirit within thee free, 440

My image, not imparted to the brute,
"O by what name, for thou above all these, Whose fellowship therefore unmeet for thee
Above mankind, or ought than mankind higher, Good reason was thou freely shouldst dislike,
Surpassest far my naming, how may I

And be so minded still; I, ere thou spak'st,
Adore thee, Author of this universe,

360 Knew it not good for man to be alone, And all this good to man? for whose well-being And no such company as then thou saw'st So amply, and with hands so liberal,

Intended thee, for trial only brought, Thou hast provided all things : but with me To see how thou couldst judge of fit and meet. I see not who partakes. In solitude

What next I bring shall please thee, be assurd, What happiness, who can enjoy alone, 365 Thy likeness, thy fit help, thy other self, 450 Or all enjoying, what contentment find ?

Thy wish exactly to thy heart's desire.'
Thus I presumptuous; and the vision bright,
As with a smile more brighten'd, thus replied: “ He ended, or I heard no more, for now

My earthly by his heavenly overpower'd (height «•What call'st thou solitude? is not the earth Which it had long stood under, straind to the With various living creatures, and the air, 370 In that celestial colloquy sublime,

455 Replenish'd, and all these at thy command

As with an object that excels the sense, To come and play before thee? knowest thon not Dazzled and spent, sunk down, and sought repair Their language and their ways ? they also know, Of sleep, which instantly fell on me, cali'd And reason not contemptibly; with these

By Nature as in aid, and clos'd mine eyes. Find pastime, and bear rule; thy realm is large.' Mine eyes he clos'd, but open left the cell 460 So spake the universal Lord, and seem'd 376 of Fancy, my internal sight, by which So ord'ring. I with leave of speech implor'd, Abstract, as in a trance, methought I saw, And humble deprecation, thus replied:

Though sleeping, where I lay, and saw the shape

Still glorious before whom awake I stood; “Let not my words offend thee, heavenly Who, stooping, open'd my left side, and took

465 Power,

From thence a rib, with cordial spirits warm, My Maker, be propitious while I speak. 380 And life.blood streaming fresh; wide was the Hast thou not made me here thy substitute,

wound, And these inferior far beneath me set?

But suddenly with flesh fill'd up and heal'd Among unequals what society

The rib he form'd and fashion'd with his hands; Can sort, what harmony or true delight?

Under his forming hands a creature grew, 470 Which must be mutual, in proportion due 385 Manlike, but different sex, so lovely

fair, Given and receiv'd; but in disparity,

That what seem'd fair in all the world, seem'd now The one intense, the other still remiss,

Mean, or in her summ'd up, in her contain'd, Cannot well suit with either, but soon prove And in her looks, which from that time infus'd Tedious alike : of fellowship I speak

Sweetness into my heart, unfelt before, 475 Such as I seek, fit to participate

390 And into all things from her air inspir'd All rational delight, wherein the brute

The spirit

of love and amorous delight. Cannot be human consort; they rejoice

She disappear'd, and left me dark; I wak'd Each with their kind, lion with lioness;

To find her, or for ever to deplore So fitly them in pairs thou hast combin'd;

Her loss, and other pleasures all abjure: Much less can bírd with beast, or fish with fowl When out of hope, behold her, not far off,

445

Such as I saw her in my dream, adorn'd

For what admir'st thou, what transports thee so? With what all earth or heaven could bestow An outside ? fair no doubt, and worthy well To make her amiable. On she came,

Thy cherishing, thy honouring, and thy love, Led by her heavenly Maker, though unseen, 485 Not thy subjection: weigh with her thyself; 570 And guided by his voice, nor uninform'd

Then value. Oft-times nothing profits more Of nuptial sanctity and marriage rites :

Than self-esteem, grounded on just and right Grace was in all her steps, heaven in her eye, Well manag'd; of that skili the more thou know'st, In every gesture dignity and love!

The more she will acknowledge thee her head, I overjoy'ä сould not forbear aloud. 490 And to realities yield all her shows:

375

Made to adorn for thy delight the more, «« This turn hath made amends; thou hast So awful, that with honour thou may'st love fulfill d

Thy mate, who sees when thou art seen least wise. Thy words, Creator bounteous and benign,

But if the sense of touch, whereby mankind Giver of all things fair, but fairest this

Is propagated, seem such dear delight

580 Of all thy gifts, nor enviest. I now see

Beyond all other, think the same vouchsaf'd Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh, myself 495 To cattle and each beast; which would not be Before me; Woman is her name, of man

To them made common and divulg'd, if ought Extracted for this cause he shall forego

Therein enjoy'd were worthy to subdue Father and mother, and to his wife adhere; The soul of man, or passion in him move. 585 And they shall be one flesh, one heart, one soul.' What higher in her society thou find'st

Attractive, human, rational, love still ; “ She heard me thus, and though divinely In loving thou dost well, in passion not, brought,

500 Wherein true love consists not; love refines Yet innocence and virgin modesty,

The thoughts, and heart enlarges, hath his seat Her virtue and the conscience of her worth,

In reason, and is judicious, is the scale

591 That would be woo'd, and not unsought be won, By which to heavenly love thou may'st ascend; Not obvious, not obtrusive, but retira

Not sunk in carnal pleasure, for which cause The more desirable, or to say all,

505 Among the beasts no mate for thee was found.” Nature herself, though pure of sinful thought, Wrought in her so, that seeing me, she turn'd: To whom thus half-abash'd, Adam repħed : 595 I follow'd her; she what was honour knew,

“ Neither her outside form'd so fair, nor ought And with obsequious majesty approv'd

In procreation common to all kinds
My pleaded reason. To the nuptial bower 510 (Though higher of the genial bed by far,
I led her, blushing like the morn: all heaven, And with mysterious reverense I deem,)
And happy constellations, on that hour

So much delights me, as those graceful acts, 600 Shed their selectest influence; the earth

Those thousand docencies that daily fíow Gave sign of gratulation, and each hill;

From all her words and actions, mix'd with love Joyous the birds; fresh gales and gentle airs 515 And sweet compliance, which declare unfeign'd Whisper'd it to the woods, and from their wings Union of mind, or in us both one soul; Flung rose, flung odours from the spicy shrub, Harmony to behold in wedded pair

605 Disporting till the amorous bird of night

More grateful than harmonious sound to th' ear. Sung spousal, and bid haste the evening star Yet these subject not; I to thee disclose On his hill top, to light the bridal lamp. 520 What inward thence I feel, not therefore foil'd,

Who meet with various objects, from the sense $ Thus have I told thee all my state, and brought | Variously representing; yet still free,

.610 My story to the sum of earthly bliss

Approve the best, and follow what I approve. Which I enjoy, and must confess to find

To love thou blam'st me not, for love thou say'st In all things else delight indeed, but such

Leads up to heaven, is both the way and guide; As, usd or not, works in the mind no change, 525 Bear with me then, if lawful what I ask; Nor vehement desire, these delicacies [flowers, Love not the heavenly spirits, and how their love I mean of taste, sight, smell, herbs, fruits, and Express they, by looks only', or do they mix 616 Walks, and the melody of birds; but here

Irradiance, virtual or immediate touch?” Par otherwise ! transported I behold, Transported touch; here passion first I felt, 530 To whom the angel, with a smile that glow'd Commotion strange! in all enjoyments else

Celestial rosy red, love's proper hue, Superior and unmor'd; here only weak

Answer'd: Let it suffice thee that thou know'st Against the charm of beauty's powerful glance.

621 Or nature fail'd in me, and left some part

Us happy', and without love no happiness.

Whatever pure thou in the body' enjoy'st Not proof enough such object to sustain, 585 (And pure thou wert created) we enjoy Or from my side subducting, took perhaps

In eminence, and obstacle find none More than enough; at least on her bestow'd of membrane, joint or limb, exclusive bars; 625 Too much of ornament, in outward show

Easier than air with air, if spirits embrace, Elaborate, of invard less exact.

Total they mix, union of pure with pure For well I understand in the prime end 540 Desiring; nor restrain'd conveyance need, Of nature her th' inferior, in the mind

As flesh to mix with flesh, or soul with soul. And inward faculties, which most excel,

But I can now no more; the parting sun 630 In outward also her resembling less

Beyond the earth's green Cape and verdant Isles His image who made both, and less expressing Hesperian sets, my signal to depart. The character of that dominion given

545

Be strong, live happy, and love; but first of all, O'er other creatures; yet when I approach

Him whom to love is to obey, and keep Her loveliness, so absolute she seems,

His great command ; take heed lest passion sway And in herself complete, so well to know

Thy judgment to do ought, which else free will 636 Her own, that what she wills to do or say

Would not admit: thine and of all thy sons Seems wisest, virtuousest, discreetest, best; 550 The weal or wo in thee is plac'd; beware! All higher knowledge in her presence falls

I in thy persevering shall rejoice, Degraded, wisdom in discourse with her

And all the blessid: stand fast; to stand or fall 040 Loses discount'nanc'd, and like folly shows;

Free in thine own arbitrernent it lies. Authority and reason on her wait,

Perfect within, no outward aid require; As one intended first, not after made

555 And all temptation to transgress repel." Occasionally; and, to consummate all, Greatness of mind and nobleness their seat

So saying, he arose; whom Adam thus Build in her loveliest, and create an awe

Follow'd with benediction : “Since to part, 645 About her, as a guard angelic plac'd."

Go, heavenly guest, ethereal messenger,

Sent from whose sov'reign goodness I adore. To whom the angel with contracted brow: 560

Gentle to me and affable hath been “ Accuse not nature, she hath done her part; Thy condescension, and shall be honour'd ever Do thou but thine, and be not diffident

650 Of wisdom; she deserts thee not, if thou

With grateful memory: thou tb mankind Dismiss not her, when most thou need'st her nigh,

Be good and friendly still, and oft return." By attributing overmuch to things

565

So parted they ; the angel up to heaven Less excellent, as thou thyself perceiv'st.

From the thick shade, and Adam to his bower. END OF BOOK EIGHTH.

PARADISE LOST. .

BOOK IX.

THE ARGUMENT.

[graphic]

Satan having compassed the earth, with meditated guile returns as a mist, by night into Paradise, and en

ters into the serpent sleeping. Adam and Eve in the morning go forth to their tabours, which Eve proposes to divide in several places, each labouring apart. Adam consents not, alleging the danger, lest that enemy, of whom they nere forewarned, should attempt her found alone. Eve loath to be thought not circumspect or firm enough, urges hen going apart, the rather desirous to make trial of her strength: Adam at last yields. The serpent finds her alone; his subtle approach, first gazing, then speaking, with much flattery extolling Eve above all other creatures. Eve, wondering to hear the Serpent speak, asks how he attained to human speech and such understanding not till now; the Serpent answers, that by tasting of a certain tree in the garden he attained both to speech and reason, till then void of both. Eve to quires him to bring her to that tree, and finds it to be the tree of knowledge forbidden. The Serpent, nore. grown bolder, with many wiles and arguments induces her at length to eat, she, pleased with the taste, deliberates a while whether to impart thereof to Adam or not; at last brings him of the fruit, relates what persuaded her to eat thereof. Adam, at first amazed, but perceiving her lost, resolves through vehemence of love, to perish with her; and extenuating the trespass, eats also of the fruit. The effects thereof in them both : they seek to cover their nakedness; then fall to variance and accusation of one another.

NO more of talk, where God or angel guest Depress'd; and much they may, if all be mine,
With man, as with his friend familiar usd

Not hers who brings it nightly to my ear.
To sit indulgent, and with him partake
Rural repast, permitting him the while

The sun was sunk, and after him the star
Venial discourse unblam'd: I now must change 5 Of Hesperus, whose office is to bring
Those notes to tragic; foul distrust, and breach Twilight upon the earth, short arbiter

50 Disloyal on the part of man, revolt

'Twixt day and night; and now from end to end And disobedience; on the part of heaven,

Night's hemisphere had veil'd th' horizon round: Now alienated, distance and distaste,

When Satan, who late fled before the threats
Anger and just rebuke, and judgment given, 10 Of Gabriel out of Eden, now improv'd
That brought into this world a world of wo, In meditated fraud and malice, bent

55 Sin, and her shadow Death, and Misery

On man's destruction, maugre what might hap Death's harbinger. Sad task! yet argument Of heavier on himself, fearless return'd. Not less, but more heroic than the wrath

By night he fled, and at midnight return'd Of stern Achilles on his foe pursu'd,

15 From compassing the earth, cautious of day, Thrice fugitive, about Troy wall ; or rage

Since Uriel, regent of the sun, descried

60 Of Turnus for Lavinia disespous'd;

His entrance, and forewarn'd the cherubim Or Neptune's ire, or Juno's that so long

That kept their watch; thence, full of anguish Perplex'd the Greek and Cytherea's son ;

driven, If answerable style I can obtain

20 The space of seven continued nights he rode Of my celestial patroness, who deigns

With darkness, thrice the equinoctial line Her nightly visítation unimplor'd,

He circled, four times cross'd the car of night 65 And dictates to me slumb'ring, or inspires

From pole to pole, traversing each colure; Easy my unpremeditated verse:

On th'

eighth return'd, and on the coast, averse Since first this subject for heroic song

25 From entrance or cherubic watch, by stealth Pleas'd me, long choosing, and beginning late; Found unsuspected way. There was a place, Not sedulous by nature to indite

Now not, though sin, not time, first wrought the Wars, hitherto the only argument

change,

70 Heroic deem'd, chief mast'ry to dissect

Where Tigris at the foot of Paradise With long and tedious havoc, fabled knights 30 Into a gulf shot under ground, till part In battles feign'd; the better fortitude

Rose up a fountain by the tree of life: of patience and heroic martyrdom

In with the river sunk, and with it rose Unsung; or to describe races and games,

Satan involv'd in rising mist, then sought 75 Or tilting furniture, emblazon'd shields,

Where to lie hid; sea he had search'd, and land, Impresses quaint, caparisons, and steeds; 35 From Eden over Pontus, and the pool

Bases and tinsel trappings, gorgeous knights Mæotis, up beyond the river Ob;
At joustand, tournament; then marshall'a| Downward as far antarctic; and in length
feast
West from Orontes to the ocean barr'd

80 Serv'd up in hall with sewers, and seneshals; At Darien, thence to the land where flows The skill of artifice or office mean,

Ganges and Indus. Thus the orb he roam'd Not that which justly gives heroic name 40 With narrow search, and with inspection deep To person or to poem. Me, of these

Consider'd every creature, which of all Nor skill'd nor studious, higher argument

Most opportune might serve his wiles, and found 35 Remains, sufficient of itself to raise

The serpent subtlest beast of all the field.
That name, unless an age too late, or cold

Him, after long debate, irresolute
Climate, or years, damp my intended wing 45 of thoughts revolv'd, his final sentence chose

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