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The sun himself withheld his wonted speed,
The new enlighten'd world no more should need;
The shepherds on the lawn,
Sat simply chatting in a rustic row;
Was kindly come to live with them below;
When such music sweet
As never was by mortal finger strook,
As all their souls in blissful rapture took :
Nature that heard such sound,
Of Cynthia's seat, the airy region thrilling,
And that her reign had here its last fulfilling;
'God of shepherds.
At last surrounds their sight
That with long beams the shamefaced night array'd;
Are seen in glittering ranks with wings display'd, Harping in loud and solemn quire, With unexpressive notes to Heaven's new-born Heir.
Such music (as 'tis said)
But when of old the sons of morning sung,
And the well-balanced world on hinges hung,
Ring out, ye crystal spheres,
have power to touch our senses so;
And let the base of heav'n's deep organ blows
For if such holy song
of gold, And speckled Vanity Will sicken soon and die,
And leprous Sin will melt from earthly mould; And Hell itself will pass away, And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day.
Yea Truth and Justice then
Orb'd in a rainbow; and, like glories wearing,
With radiant feet the tissued clouds down steering:
But wisest Fate says No,
The babe yet lies in smiling infancy,
So both Himself and us to glorify;
With such a horrid clang
While the red fire, and smouldering clouds out brake :
Shall from the surface to the centre shake;
But now begins; for from this happy day
Not half so far casts his usurpèd sway,
The oracles are dumb,
Runs thro’ the arched roof in words deceiving.
With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving.
The lonely mountains o'er,
A voice of weeping' heard and loud lament;
The parting genius is with sighing sent;
In consecrated earth,
The Lars,' and Lemures 8 moan with midnight plaint;
Affrights the Flamens at their service quaint;
Peor and Baälim
With that twice-batter'd God of Palestine ;4
1 Alluding to the voice said to have been heard by mariners at sea, crying, “The great Pan is dead." The story is told by Plutarch.
& Household goda
And moonèd Ashtaroth,
Now sits not girt with tapers' holy shine ;
And sullen Moloch fled, 8
His burning idol all of blackest hue;
In dismal dance about the furnace blue:
Nor is Osiris“ seen
Trampling the unshower'd grass with lowings loud:
Nought but profoundest hell can be his shroud;
He feels from Juda's land
The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn;
Not Typhon huge ending in snaky twine:
1 She was called “Regina coeli" and “Mater Deum."--NEWTON.
2 Adonis. He was killed by a wild boar on Mount Lebanon, and was wor.
shipped once a year by the Syrian
3 The god of the Ammonites