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“ Had in remembrance always with delight ! 705 “ But what created mind can comprehend

“ Their number; or the wisdom infinite
“That brought them forth, but hid their causes deep?
“ I saw when, at his word, the formless mass,

“ The world's material mould, came to a heap: 710 “ Confusion heard his voice, and wild uproar

“ Stood ruld; stood vast infinitude confin'd:
“ Till at his second bidding darkness fled,

Light shone, and order from disorder sprang!

“ Swift to their several quarters hasted then
715 “ The cumbrous elements, earth, flood, air, fire;

" And this ethereal quintessence of heaven
“Flew upward, spirited with various forms,
“ That rollid orbicular, and turn'd to stars

“Numberless, as thou seest, and how they move; 720 “Each had his place appointed, each his course :

“ The rest in circuit walls this universe.
“Look downward on that globe, whose hither side
“ With light from hence, though but reflected, shines :

“That place is earth, the seat of man; that light 725 “ His day, which else, as the other hemisphere,

“Night would invade; but there the neighbouring moon

(So call that opposite fair star) her aid

Timely interposes; and her monthly round

“ Still ending, still renewing, through mid heaven 730 “With borrow'd light her countenance triform

“Hence fills, and empties, to enlighten the earth;
“ And in her pale dominion checks the night.
“That spot to which I point is Paradise,

Adam's abode; those lofty shades, his bower.
735 “ Thy way thou canst not miss-me mine requires."

Thus said, he turn'd; and Satan, bowing low,
(As to superior spirits is wont in heaven,
Where honour due, and reverence, none neglects)

Took leave, and toward the coast of earth beneath, 740 Down from the ecliptic, sped with hop'd success,

Throws his steep flight in many an aery wheel,
Nor staid, till on Niphates' top he lights.


Satan, now in prospect of Eden, and nigh the place where he must now

attempt the bold enterprise which he undertook alone against God and man, falls into many doubts with himself, and many passions, fear, envy, and despair ; but at length confirms himself in evil, journeys on to Paradise, whose outward prospect and situation is described ; overleaps the bounds : sits in the shape of a cormorant on the tree of life, as highest in the garden, to look about him. The garden described ; Satan's first sight of Adam and Eve; his wonder at their excellent form and happy state, but with resolution to work their fall ; overhears their discourse, thence gathers that the tree of knowledge was forbidden them to eat of, under penalty of death ; and thereon intends to found his temptation, by seducing them to transgress; then leaves them awhile to know further of their state by some other means. Meanwhile Uriel descending on a sun-beam warns Gabriel, who had in charge the gate of Paradise, that some evil spirit had escaped the deep, and passed at noon by his sphere in the shape of a good angel down to Paradise, discovered after by his furious gestures in the mount. Gabriel promises to find him ere morning. Night coming on, Adam and Eve discourse of going to their rest: their bower described ; their evening worship. Gabriel, drawing forth his bands of night-watch to walk the round of Paradise, appoints two strong angels to Adam's bower, lest the evil spirit should be there doing some harm to Adam or Eve sleeping; there they find him at the ear of Eve tempting her in a dream, and bring him, though unwilling, to Gabriel; by whom questioned, he scornfully answers; prepares resistance; but, hindered by a sign from heaven, flies out of Paradise.



O, FOR that warning voice! which he who saw
The Apocalypse heard cry in heaven aloud,
Then when the Dragon, put to second rout,

Came furious down to be reveng'd on men;
5 “ Woe to th' inhabitants on earth !"—that now,

While time was, our first parents had been warn'd
The coming of their secret foe, and 'scap'd-
Haply so 'scap'd, his mortal snare ! for now

Satan, now first inflam'd with rage, came down, 10 The tempter, ere the accuser, of mankind,

To wreak on innocent frail man his loss
Of that first battle, and his flight to hell:
Yet not rejoicing in his speed, though bold

Far off and fearless, nor with cause to boast,
15 Begins his dire attempt; which nigh the birth

Now rolling boils in his tumultuous breast,
And like a devilish engine back recoils
Upon himself: horror and doubt distract

His troubled thoughts, and from the bottom stir 20 The hell within him ; for within him hell

He brings, and round about him; nor from hel
One step, no more than from himself, can fly,

By change of place: now conscience wakes despair,

That slumber'd—wakes the bitter memory
25 Of what he was, what is, and what must be-

Worse: of worse deeds worse sufferings must ensue.
Sometimes towards Eden, which now in his view
Lay pleasant, his griev'd look he fixed sad;

Sometimes towards heaven, and the full-blazing sun 30 Which now sat high in his meridian tower: Then, much revolving, thus in sighs began.

“O thou, that, with surpassing glory crown'd, “Look'st from thy sole dominion like the god

“Of this new world! at whose sight all the stars 35 “Hide their diminish'd heads; to thee I call,

“But with no friendly voice, and add thy name,
O sun ! to tell thee how I hate thy beams,
“ That bring to my remembrance from what state

“I fell—how glorious once above thy sphere, 40 “ Till pride, and worse ambition threw me down, Warring in heaven against heaven's matchless King!

Ah, wherefore ! He deserv'd no such return
“ From me, whom he created what I was
“ In that bright eminence, and with his good

Upbraided none; nor was his service hard.

What could be less than to afford him praise, The easiest recompense, and pay him thanks, “How due! Yet all his good prov'd ill in me,

“And wrought but malice : lifted up so high 50 “I 'sdain'd subjection, and thought one step higher

“ Would set me highest, and in a moment quit
“ The debt immense of endless gratitude,
“ So burdensome, still paying, still to owe;

Forgetful what from him I still receiv'd ; 55 “ And understood not that a grateful mind

By owing owes not, but still pays, at once
“ Indebted and discharg'd; what burden then?
“O had his powerful destiny ordain'd
“Me some inferior angel, I had stood

Then happy! no unbounded hope had rais'd

45 "6


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