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When by the rout that made the hideous roar,"
His gory visage down the stream was sent,
Down the swift Hebrus to the Lesbian shorepa!

Alas! what boots it with incessant care
To tend the homely slighted shepherd's trade
And strictly meditate the thankless Muse ?
Were it not better done as others use,
To sport with Amaryllis in the shade,
Or with the tangles of Neæra's hair +
Fame is the spur that the clear spirit doth raise :
(That last infirmity of noble mind);-
To scorn delights, and live laborious days;
But the fair guerdon when we hope to find,
And think to burst out into sudden blaze,
Comes the blind Fury with the abhorrèd shears.
And slits the thin-spun life.' :"But not the praise,"
Phoebus replied, and touch'd my trembling ears';
“Fame is no plant that grows on mortal soil,
Nor in the glist'ring foil
Set off to th' world, nor in broad rumour lies;
But lives and spreads aloft by those pure eyes,
And perfect witness of all-judging Jove;
As he pronounces lastly on each deed,
Of so much fame in heav'n expect thy meed." ;
O fountain Arethuse, 2 and thou honour'd flood,
Smooth-sliding Mineius, crown'd with vocal reeds,
That strain I heard was of a higher mood :
But now my oat proceeds,
And listens to the herald of the sea
That came in Neptune's plea;
He ask'd the waves, and ask'd the felon winds,
What hard mishap hath doom'd this gentle swain ?
And question'd every gust of rugged wings
That blows from off each beakèd promontory:
They knew not of his story,
And sage Hippotades their answer brings, 4

1

i The Bacchanalians.
2 In Sicily.
3 Near Mantua.

4 Eolus (the East. Wind) was the son of Hippotades.

That not a blast was from his dungeon stray'd,
The air was calm, and on the level brine
Sleek Panope with all her sisters play'd.
It was that fatal and perfidious bark,
Built in th' eclipse, and rigg'd with curses dark,
That sunk so low that sacred head of thine.

Next Camus, reverend sire, went footing slow,
His mantle hairy, and his bonnet sedge,
Inwrought with figures dim, and on the edge
Like to that sanguine flow'r inscribed with woe.2
Ah! Who hath reft (quoth he) my dearest pledge ?
Last came, and last did go,
The pilot of the Galilean lake.
Two massy keys he bore of metals twain,
(The golden opes, the iron shuts amain)
He shook his mitred locks, and stern bespake,
How well could I have spared for thee, young swain, 4
Enow of such as for their bellies' sake
Creep, and intrude, and climb into the fold !
Of other care they little reckoning make,
Than how to scramble at the shearer's feast,
And shove away the worthy bidden guest;
Blind mouths! that scarce themselves know how to hold
A sheep-hook, or have learn’d aught else the least
That to the faithful herdman's art belongs !
What recks it them? What need they? They are sped;
And when they list, their lean and flashy songs
Grate on their scrannel pipes of wretched straw;
The hungry sheep look up, and are not fed,
But swoln with wind, and the rank mist they draw,
Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread;
Besides what the grim wolf with privy paw
Daily devours apace, and nothing said ;
But that two-handed engine at the door
Stands ready to smite once, and smite no more.

[graphic]

1 The Cam.

? The Hyacinth; supposed to bear the letters Ai-Ai, put on it by Apollo in memory of his grief for Hyacinthus. See note at p. 2.

3 "The pilot of the Galilean lake" is St. Peter.

4 King intended to take orders in the Church of England.

5 "Thin, lean, meagre.”—T. WARTON.

Return, Alpheus, the dread voice is past, That shrunk thy streams; return, Sicilian Muse, And call the vales, and bid them hither cast Their bells, and flow'rets of a thousand hues. Ye valleys low, where the mild whispers use Of shades, and wanton winds, and gushing brooks, On whose fresh lap the swart-star sparely looks : Throw hither all your quaint enamell’d eyes, That on the green turf suck the honied showers, And purple all the ground with vernal flowers. Bring the rathe primrose that forsaken dies, The tufted crow-toe, and pale jessamine, The white pink, and the pansy freak'd with jet, The glowing violet, The musk-rose, and the well-attired woodbine, With cowslips wan that hang the pensive head, And every flower that sad embroidery wears : Bid amaranthus all his beauty shed, And daffodillies fill their cups with tears, To strow the laureate hearse where Lycid lies. For so to interpose a little ease, Let our frail thoughts dally with false surmise. Ay me! Whilst thee the shores, and sounding seas Wash far away, where'er thy bones are hurld, Whether beyond the stormy Hebrides, Where thou perhaps under the whelming tide, Visit'st the bottom of the monstrous world ; Or whether thou to our moist vows denied, Sleep'st by the fable of Bellerus old, Where the great vision of the guarded mount? Looks toward Namancos3 and Bayona's hold: Look homeward Angel now, and melt with ruth. And, O ye dolphins, waft the hapless youth.

Weep no more, woful Shepherds, weep no more, For Lycidas your sorrow is not dead,

1

? Bellerus, a Cornish giant, from Bellerium.

2 Mount St. Michael, near the Land's End, Cornwall.

3 In an Atlas of 1623, and in a map of Gallicia, near Cape Finisterre, is marked a place called Namancos. In this map, also, is marked the Castle of Bayona.

Sunk though he be beneath the watery floor;
So sinks the day-star in the ocean bed,
And yet anon repairs his drooping head,
And tricks his beams, and with new spangled ore
Flames in the forehead of the morning sky;
So Lycidas sunk low, but mounted high,
Thro' the dear might of Him that walk'd the waves.
Where other groves, and other streams along,
With nectar pure

his
oozy

locks he laves,
And hears the unexpressive nuptial song,
In the blest kingdoms meek of joy and love.
There entertain him all the saints above,
In solemn troops, and sweet societies,
That sing, and singing in their glory move,
And wipe the tears for ever from his eyes.
Now, Lycidas, the shepherds weep no more;
Henceforth thou art the genius of the shore,
In thy large recompense, and shalt be good
To all that wander in that perilous flood.

Thus sang the uncouth swain to the oaks and wills,
While the still morn went out with sandals gray,
He touch'd the tender stops of various quills,
With eager thought warbling his Doric lay:
And now the sun had stretch'd out all the hills,
And now was dropp'd into the western bay;
At last he rose, and twitch'd his mantle blue :
To-morrow to fresh woods, and pastures new.

Paradise Lost.

THE VERSE OF “PARADISE LOST."

*The measure is English Heroic Verse without Rime," as that of Homer in Greek, and of Virgil in Latin; Rime being no necessary Adjunct or true Ornament of Poem or good Verse, in longer Works especially, but the Invention of a barbarous Age, to set off wretched matter and lame Meeter; grac't indeed since by the use of some famous modern Poets, carried away by Custom, but much to thir own vexation, hindrance, and constraint, to express many things otherwise, and for the most part worse, then else they would have exprest them. Not without cause, therefore, some both Italian and Spanish Poets of prime note, have rejected Rime both in longer and shorter Works, as have also, long since, our best English Tragedies, as a thing of itself, to all judicious eares, triveal and of no true musical delight; which consists only in apt Numbers, fit quantity of Syllables, and the sense variously drawn out from one verse into another, not in the jingling sound of liker endings, a fault avoyded by the learned Ancients both in Poetry and all good Oratory. This neglect then of Rime, so little is to be taken for a defect, though it may seem so perhaps to vulgar readers, that it rather is to be esteem'd an example set, the first in English, of ancient liberty recover'd to Heroic Poem from the troublesom and modern bondage of Rimeing."

From Milton's own Edition, 1669.

BOOK I.

THE ARGUMENT

This First Book proposes, first in brief, the whole subject, Man's disobedience, and the loss thereupon of Paradise, wherein he was placed. Then touches the prime cause of his fall, the serpent, or rather Satan in the serpent; who, revolting from God, and drawing to his side many legions of Angels, was by the command of God driven out of heaven with all his crew into the great deep. Which action passed over, the Poem hastes into the midst of things, presenting Satan with his Angels now fallen into hell, described here, not in the centre, for heaven and earth may be supposed as yet not made, certainly not yet accursed, but in a place of utter darkness, fitliest called Chaos. Here Satan with his Angels lying on the burning lake, thunderstruck and astonished, after a certain space recovers, as from confusion, calls up him who next in order and dignity lay by him : they confer of their miserable fall. Satan awakens all his legions, who lay till then in the same manner confounded; they rise; their numbers, array of battle, their chief leaders named, according to the idols known afterwards in Canaan and the countries adjoining. To these Satan directs his speech, comforts them with hope yet of regaining heaven, but tells them lastly of new world and new kind of creature to be created, according to an ancient prophecy or report in heaven : for that Angels were long before this visible creation, was the opinion of many ancient Fathers.

To find out the truth of this prophecy, and what to determine thereon, he refers to a full council. What his associates thence attempt. Pandæmonium, the palace of Satan, rises, suddenly built out of the deep: the infernal Peers there sit in council. sinir

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