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• Command me absolutely not to go,

Going into such danger, as thou saidst? “ Too facile then, thou didst not much gainsay ;

Nay, didst permit, approve, and fair dismiss. 1160“ Hadst thou been firm and fix'd in thy dissent,

“ Neither had I transgress'd, nor thou with me."

To whom, then first incensd, Adam replied: “Is this the love, is this the recompense

“Of mine to thee, ingrateful Eve! express'd 1165 “ Immutable when thou wert lost, not I

“ Who might have liv'd, and 'joy'd immortal bliss,
“ Yet willingly chose rather death with thee?
“ And am I now upbraided as the cause

“Of thy transgressing? Not enough severe, 1170 " It seems, in thy restraint! What could I more?

“I warned thee,-I admonish'd thee-foretold
“ The danger, and the lurking enemy
“ That lay in wait; beyond this, had been force ;

And force upon free will hath here no place. 1175 But confidence then bore thee on, secure

“Either to meet no danger, or to find
“ Matter of glorious trial: and perhaps
“I also err'd, in overmuch admiring

“ What seem'd in thee so perfect, that I thought 1180 “ No evil durst attempt thee; but I

“ That error now, which is become my crime,
And thou the accuser! Thus it shall befal
“ Him who, to worth in woman overtrusting,

“Lets her will rule : restraint she will not brook; 1185“ And, left to herself, if evil thence ensue,

“ She first his weak indulgence will accuse."

Thus they in mutual accusation spent
The fruitless hours; but neither self-condemning:
And of their vain contést appeared no end.




Man's transgression known, the guardian-angels forsake Paradise, and

return up to heaven to approve their vigilance, and are approved; God declaring that the entrance of Satan could not be by them prevented. He sends his Son to judge the transgressors; who descends and gives

ly; then in pity clothes them both, and reascends. Sin and Death, sitting till then at the gates of hell, by wondrous sympathy feeling the success of Satan in this new world, and the sin by man there committed, resolve to sit no longer confined in hell, but to follow Satan their sire up to the place of man: to make the way easier from hell to this world to and fro, they pave a broad highway or bridge over Chaos, according to the track that Satan first made; then preparing for earth, they meet him, proud of his success, returning to hell; their mutual gratulation. Satan arrives at Pandemonium: in full assembly relates with boasting his success against man ; instead of applause is entertained with a general hiss by all his audience, transformed with himself also suddenly into serpents according to his doom given in Paradise ; then deluded with a show of the forbidden tree springing up before them, they, greedily reaching to take of the fruit, chew dust and bitter ashes. The proceedings of Sin and Death; God foretels the final victory of his Son over them, and the renewing of all things; but for the present, commands his angels to make several alterations in the heavens and elements. Adam, more and more perceiving his fallen condition, heavily bewails, rejects the condolement of Eve; she persists, and at length appeases him : then to evade the curse likely to fall on their offspring, proposes to Adam violent ways, which he approves not; but, conceiving better hope, puts her in mind of the late pro made them, that her seed should be revenged on the serpent; and exhorts her with him to seek peace of the offended Deity, by repentance and supplication.




MEANWHILE the heinous and despiteful act
Of Satan done in Paradise, and how
He, in the serpent, had perverted Eve,

Her husband she, to taste the fatal fruit,
5 Was known in heaven ; for what can 'scape the eye

Of God all-seeing, or deceive his heart
Omniscient? who, in all things wise and just,
Hinder'd not Satan to attempt the mind

Of man, with strength entire and free-will arm'd, 10 Complete to have discover'd, and repuls'd,

Whatever wiles of foe, or seeming friend.
For still they knew, and ought to have still remember'd,
The high injunction—not to taste that fruit,

Whoever tempted; which they not obeying 15 Incurr'd (what could they less?) the penalty;

And, manifold in sin, deserv'd to fall.

Up into heaven, from Paradise, in haste
The angelic guards ascended, mute and sad

For man! for of his state by this they knew;
20 Much wond'ring how the subtle fiend had stol'n
Entrance unseen. Soon as the unwelcome news



From earth arriv'd at heaven-gate, displeas'd
All were who heard ; dim sadness did not spare

That time celestial visages, yet, mix'd 25 With pity, violated not their bliss.

About the new arriv'd, in multitudes
The ethereal people ran, to hear and know
How all befel: they, towards the throne supreme,

Accountable made haste, to make appear,
30 With righteous plea, their utmost vigilance,

And easily approv'd: when the Most High
Eternal Father, from his secret cloud
Amidst, in thunder utter'd thus his voice:

“ Assembled Angels, and ye Powers return'd 35 “ From unsuccessful charge! be not dismay'd,

“ Nor troubled at these tidings from the earth,
“ Which your sincerest care could not prevent, ,
“Foretold so lately what would come to pass,
“ When first this tempter cross'd the gulf from hell.
“ I told ye then he should prevail, and speed
On his bad errand; man should be seduc'd,
“ And flatter'd out of all, believing lies
“ Against his Maker; no decree of mine

“ Concurring to necessitate his fall,
45 “ Or touch with lightest moment of impulse

“ His free-will, to her own inclining left
« In even scale. But fall’n he is; and now
“ What rests, but that the mortal sentence pass

“On his transgression-death denounc'd that day? 50 “ Which he presumes already vain and void,

“Because not yet inflicted, as he fear'd,

By some immediate stroke ; but soon shall find
“Forbearance no acquittance, ere day end.

“ Justice shall not return, as bounty, scorn'd. 55 “But whom send I to judge them? Whom but thee,

“ Vicegerent Son ? To thee I have transferr'd
“ All judgment, whether in heaven, or earth, or hell.

Easy it may be seen that I intend
Mercy colleague with justice, sending thee,

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