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As clouds, and clouds may rain, and rain produco
155 Each orb a glimpse of light, convey'd so far Down to this habitable, which returns Light back to them, is obvious to dispute.But whether thus these things, or whether not; Whether the sun predominant in Heav'n 160 Rise on the earth, or earth rise on the sun, He from the east his flaming road begin, Or she from west her silent course advance With inoffensive pace that spinning sleeps On her soft axle, while she paces even,
165 And bears thee soft with the smooth air along, Solicit not thy thoughts with matters hid ; Leave them to God above; him serve and fear! Of other creatures, as him pleases best, Wherever placed, let him dispose : joy thou 170 In what he gives to thee, this Paradise And thy fair Eve. Heav'n is for thee too high To know what passes there. Be lowly wise : Think only what concerns thee and thy being; Dream not of other worlds, what creatures there 175 Live, in what state, condition, or degree, Contented that thus far hath been reveal'd Not of Earth only, but of highest Heav'n.
To whom thus Adam, clear'd of doubt, reply'd : How fully hast thou satisfy'd me, pure
180 Intelligence of Heav'n, Angel serene, And freed from intricacies, taught to live, The easiest way; nor with perplexing thoughts To interrupt the sweet of life, from which
150. The conceit in this line is very old, the sun being said to communicate male, the moon female liht.
158. Nonghi, or like, is proposed instead of light in this verse, but the reasons alleged are hardly sufficient to authorize the change.
God hath bid dwell far off all anxious cares, 185
195 And renders us in things that most concern Unpractised, unprepared, and still to seek. Therefore from this high pitch let us descend A lower flight, and speak of things at hand Useful, whence haply mention may arise 200 Of something not unseasonable to ask By suffrance, and thy wonted favour deign'd. Thee I have heard relating what was done Ere my remembrance : now hear me relate My story, which perhaps thou hast not heard; 205 And day is yet not spent; till then thou seest How subtly to detain thee I devise, Inviting thee to hear while I relate, Fond, were it not in hope of thy reply: For while I sit with thee, I seem in Heav'n ; 210 And sweeter thy discourse is to my ear Than fruits of palm-tree pleasantest to thirst And hunger both, from labour, at the hour Of sweet repast: they satiate and soon fill, Though pleasant, but thy words, with grace divine Imbued, bring to their sweetness no satiety.
216 To whom thus Raphael answer'd heav'nly meek : Nor are thy lips ungraceful, Sire of men, Nor tongue ineloquent; for God on thee Abundantly his gifts hath also pour'd
220 Inward and outward both, his image fair: Speaking or mute, all comeliness and grace
204. There are few passages in the poem which will be read with more pleasing sensatiors, than the relation Adam gives of his first sensations on his becoming conscious of existence. The same idea of describing a human being wakening into life in the full maturity of his powers, has been made the subject of a beautilul little piece ir Buffon.'
Attends thee, and each word, each motion forms :
230 Far on excursion tow'rd the gates of Hell ; Squared in full legion (such command we had) To see that none thence issued forth a spy, Or enemy, while God was in his work, Lest he, incensed at such eruption bold,
235 Destruction with creation might have mix'd. Not that they durst without his leave attempt, But us he sends upon his high behests For state, as Sov'reign King, and to inure Our prompt obedience. Fast we found, fast shut The dismal gates, and barricado'd strong ; 241 But long ere our approaching, heard within Noise, other than the sound of dance or song; Torment, and loud lament, and furious rage. Glad we return'd up to the coasts of light
245 Ere Sabbath ev'ning: so we had in charge. But thy relation now; for I attend, Pleased with thy words, no less than thou with mine.
So spake the God-like Pow'r, and thus our sire: For Man to tell how human life began
250 Is hard; for who himself beginning knew? Desire with thee still longer to converse Induced me. As new waked from soundest sleep, Soft on the flowery herb I found me laid In balmy sweat, which with his beams the sun 255 Soon dry'd, and on the reeking moisture fed. Straight toward Heav'n my wond'ring eyes I turn'd, And gazed a while the ample sky, till raised By quick instinctive motion, up I sprung, As thitherward endeav'ring, and upright
280 Stood on my feet. About me round I saw Hill, dale, and shady woods, and sunny plains,
225. So the angel addresses John, Rev. xxii. 9. 229 The absence of Raphae was invented to give Adam a At reason for his narrative.
240. Virgil, Æn. vi. 557.
And liquid lapse of murm'ring streams: by th'ese,
ye that live and move, fair Creatures, tell, 276
294 And lived. One came, niethought, of shape divine, And said, Thy mansion wants thee Adam ; rise, First man, of men innumerable ordain'd First Father ; call'd by thee, I come thy guide
266. Wiih fragrance, with a joy like that of nature in spring time.
272. There is no contradiction between this line and line 352, &c. as Warburton asserts: Adam was able to name things generally, that is, according to their several kinds of being, as soon as he beheld them, but it was by a more immediate inspiration, Milton intimates, that he was taught to give names to the several species of animals, &c.
To the garden of bliss, thy seat prepared.
310 Had lively shadow'd. Here had new begun My wand'ring, had not he who was my guide Up hither, from among the trees appear’d, Presence divine. Rejoicing, but with awe, In adoration at his feet I fell
315 Subnriss : he rear'd me', and Whom thou sought'st Said mildly ; Author of all this thou seest
(I am, Above, or round about thee, or beneath. This Paradise I give thee : count it thine. To till and keep, and of the fruit to eat.
320 Of every tree that in the garden grows Eat freely with glad heart; fear here no dearth; But of the tree whose operation brings Knowledge of good and ill, which I have set The pledge of thy obedience and thy faith, 325 Amid the garden, by the tree of life, Remember what I warn thee: Shun to taste, And shun the
bitter consequence: for know. The day thou eat'st thereof, my sole command Transgress'd, inevitably thou shalt die;
330 From that day mortal, and this happy state Shalt lose; expellid from hence into a world Of woe and sorrow. Sternly he pronounced The rigid interdiction, which resounds Yet dreadful in mine ear, though in my choice
300. Gen. iii. 15. It is supposed by a great number of commen tators that Adam was not formed in Paradise, but in some othe. part of the earth, without the inclosure of the sacred garden, into which he was carried by God after his creation. :20. To till; to cultivate in any way which the nature of a country, or its productions, may require.
330. Gen. i. 17.