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(And pure

pure

Variously representing; yet still free
Approve the best, and follow what I approve.
To love thou blam'st me not, for love thou say'st
Leads up to heav'n, is both the way and guide;
Bear with me then, if lawful what I ask :
Love not the heav'nly spirits, and how their love
Express they ? by looks only ? or do they mix
Irradiance, virtual or immediate touch?

To whom the angel with a smile that glow'd
Celestial rosy red, love's proper hue,
Answer'd. Let it suffice thee that thou know'st
Us happy, and without love no happiness.
Whatever pure thou in the body enjoy'st,

thou wert created,) we enjoy
In eminence, and obstacle find none
Of membrane, joint, or limb, exclusive bars :
Easier than air with air, if spirits embrace,
Total they mix, union of pure

with
Desiring; nor restrain'd conveyance need
As flesh to mix with flesh, or soul with soul.
But I can now no more; the parting sun
Beyond the earth's green Cape and Verdant Isles,
Hesperean sets, my signal to depart.
Be strong, live happy, and love, but first of all
Him whom to love is to obey, and keep
His great command; take heed lest passion sway
Thy judgment to do aught, which else free will
Would not admit; thine and of all thy sons
The weal or woe in thee is placed; beware.
I in thy persevering shall rejoice,
And all the blest: stand fast; to stand or fall
Free in thine own arbitrement it lies;
Perfect within, no outward aid require,
And all temptation to transgress repel.

So saying, he arose; whom Adam thus Follow'd with benediction. Since to part, Go, heavenly guest, ethereal messenger,

i Cape de Verde and the Cape de Vorde Islands.

2 In the West, where Hesperus, the evening star, appears.-From NEWTON. 31 John v. 3.

Sent from whose sov'reign goodness I adore.
Gentle to me and affable hath been
Thy condescension, and shall be honour'd ever
With grateful memory: thou to mankind
Be good and friendly still, and oft return.

So parted they, the angel up to heav'n
From the thick shade, and Adam to his bower.

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BOOK IX.

THE ARGUMENT.

Satan having compassed the earth, with meditated guile returns as a mist by night into paradise, and enters into the serpent sleeping. Adam and Eve in the morning go forth to their labours, which Eve proposes to divide in several places, each labouring apart : Adam consents not, alleging the danger, lest that enemy, of whom they were forewarned, should attempt her found alone : Eve, loth to be thought not circumspect or firm enough, urges her 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 requires him to bring her to that tree, and finds it to be the Tree of Knowledge forbidden; the serpent, now 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
With man, as with his friend, familiar used
To sit indulgent, and with him partake
Rural repast, permitting him the while
Venial discourse unblamed; I now must change
These notes to tragic; foul distrust, and breach
Disloyal on the part of man, revolt,
And disobedience : on the part of heav'n
Now alienated, distance and distaste,
Anger, and just rebuke, and judgment giv'n,
That brought into this world a world of woe;
Sin and her shadow Death, and misery
Death's harbinger: sad task, yet argument
Not less but more heroic than the wrath
Of stern Achilles on his foepursued
Thrice fugitive about Troy wall; or rage
Of Turnus for Lavinia disespoused,”
Or Neptune's ire or Juno's, that so long
Perplex'd the Greek 3 and Cytherea's son :*

1 Hector. See Iliad. ? See neid.

3 Ulysses. 4 Eneas,

! !

If answerable style I can obtain
Of my celestial patroness, who deigns
Her nightly visitation unimplored,
And dictates to me slumb’ring, or inspires
Easy my unpremeditated verse:
Since first this subject for heroic song
Pleased me, long choosing and beginning late;'
Not sedulous by nature to indite
Wars, hitherto the only argument
Heroic deem'd, chief mast'ry to dissect
With long and tedious havock fabled knights
In battles feign'd.; the better fortitude
Of patience and heroic martyrdom
Unsung; or to describe races and games,
Or tilting furniture, emblazon'd shields,
Impresses quaint, caparisons and steeds ;.
Bases 3 and tinsel trappings, gorgeous knights
At joust and tournament; then marshall’d feast
Served up in hall with sewers, and seneshals;
The skill of artifice or office mean,
Not that, which justly gives heroic name
To person or to poem. Me of these
Nor skill'd nor studious higher argument
Remains, sufficient of itself to raise
That name, unless an age too late, or cold
Climate, or years, damp my intended wing
Depress’d, and much they may, if all be mine,
Not hers who brings it nightly to my ear.

The sun was sunk, and after him the star
Of Hesperus, whose office is to bring
Twilight. upon the earth, short arbiter
'Twixt day and night, and now from end to end
Night's hemisphere had veil'd the horizon round:
When Satan who late fled before the threats
Of Gabriel out of Eden, now improved

i Milton is supposed to have begun his great poem in his forty-eighth year, and finished it in his fifty-seventh. It was

published in 1667, when the Poet was in
his sixtieth year.

2 Devices on sbields.
3 The mantles worn by knights.

In meditated fraud and malice, bent On man's destruction, maugre what might hap Of heavier on himself, fearless return’d. By night he fled, and at midnight return'd From compassing the earth, cautious of day, Since Uriel regent of the sun descried His entrance, and forewarn’d the Cherubim That kept their watch; thence full of anguish driv'n, l'he space of seven continued nights he rode With darkness, thrice the equinoctial line He circled, four times cross'd the car of night From pole to pole, traversing each colure;' On the eighth return'd, and on the coast averse From entrance or Cherubic watch by stealth Found unsuspected way. There was a place, Now not, though sin, not time, first wrought the change, Where Tigris at the foot of paradise Into a gulf shot under ground, till part Rose up a fountain by the Tree of Life : In with the river sunk, and with it rose Satan involved in rising mist, then sought Where to lie hid: sea he had search’d, and land From Eden over Pontus,” and the pool Mæotis, up beyond the river Ob;3 Downward as far Antarctic; and in length West from Orontesa to the ocean barr'd At Darien ;5 thence to the land where flows Ganges and Indus:6 thus the orb he roam’d With narrow search; and with inspection deep Consider'd every creature, which of all Most opportune might serve his wiles, and found The serpent subtlest beast of all the field.? Him after long debate, irresolute Of thoughts revolved, his final sentence chose Fit vessel, fittest.in.of fraud, in whom

1 The colures are two great imaginary circles encompassing the globe froin north to south. Saian moved thus to keep in the shades of night.-From Lewtox.

The Euxino, or Dlack Sca.

3 Oby, a river of Siberia, .car the pic
4 A river of Syria.
5 The Isthmus of Panama.
6 India.
7 Gen. iii. l.

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