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Pansies, and violets, and asphodel,

And hyacinth; Earth's freshest softest lap.
There they their fill of love and love's disport
Took largely, of their mutual guilt the seal,
The solace of their sin; till dewy sleep
Oppress'd them, wearied with their amorous play.
Soon as the force of that fallacious fruit,
That with exhilarating vapour bland



About their spirits had play'd, and inmost powers
Made err, was now exhaled; and grosser sleep,
Bred of unkindly fumes, with conscious dreams
Incumber'd, now had left them up they rose 1050
As from unrest; and, each the other viewing,
Soon found their eyes how open'd, and their minds
How darken'd; innocence, that as a veil

Had shadow'd them from knowing ill, was gone :

Just confidence, and native righteousness,


And honour, from about them, naked left

To guilty Shame; he cover'd, but his robe
Uncover'd more So rose the Danite strong,

Herculean Samson, from the harlot lap

Of Philistéan Dalilah, and waked

Of all their virtue: Silent, and in face

Shorn of his strength, They destitute and bare



Confounded, long they sat, as stricken mute :
Till Adam, though not less than Eve abash'd,
At length gave utterance to these words constrain'd:
O Eve, in evil hour thou didst give ear
To that false worm, of whomsoever taught
To counterfeit Man's voice; true in our fall,
False in our promised rising; since our eyes
Open'd we find indeed, and find we know
Both good and evil: good lost, and evil got;
Bad fruit of knowledge, if this be to know;
Which leaves us naked thus, of honour void,
Of innocence, of faith, of purity,


Our wonted ornaments now soil'd and stain'd,
And in our faces évident the signs



Of foul concupiscence; whence evil store;
Even shame, the last of evils; of the first
Be sure then-How shall I behold the face
Henceforth of God or Angel, erst with joy
And rapture so oft beheld? Those heavenly shapes
Will dazzle now this earthly with their blaze
Insufferably bright. O! might I here
In solitude live savage; in some glade
Obscured, where highest woods, impenetrable
To star or sunlight, spread their umbrage broad
And brown as evening: Cover me, ye Pines!
Ye Cedars, with innumerable boughs


Hide me, where I may never see them more !—
But let us now, as in bad plight, devise
What best may for the present serve to hide


The parts of each from other, that seem most

To shame obnoxious, and unseemliest seen;

Some tree, whose broad smooth leaves together sew'd,
And girded on our loins, may cover round
Those middle parts; that this new comer, Shame,
There sit not, and reproach us as unclean.


So counsel'd he, and both together went



Into the thickest wood; there soon they chose
The fig tree; not that kind for fruit renown'd,
But such as at this day, to Indians known,
In Malabar or Decan spreads her arms
Branching so broad and long, that in the ground
The bended twigs take root, and daughters grow
About the mother tree, a pillar'd shade
High overarch'd, and echoing walks between :
There oft the Indian herdsmen, shunning heat,
Shelters in cool, and tends his pasturing herds
At loopholes cut through thickest shade: Those leave
They gather'd, broad as Amazonian targe;
And, with what skill they had, together sew'd,
To gird their waist; vain covering, if to hide
Their guilt and dreaded shame! O, how unlike
To that first naked glory! Such of late


Columbus found the American, so girt

With feather'd cincture; naked else, and wild

Among the trees on isles and woody shores.


Thus fenced, and, as they thought, their shame in part
Cover'd, but not at rest or ease of mind,

They sat them down to weep; nor only tears
Rain'd at their eyes, but high winds worse within
Began to rise, high passions, anger, hate,
Mistrust, suspicion, discord; and shook sore
Their inward state of mind, calm region once
And full of peace, now toss'd and turbulent :
For Understanding ruled not, and the Will
Heard not her lore; both in subjection now
To sensual appetite, who from beneath
Usurping over sov'reign Reason claim'd
Superior sway: From thus distemper'd breast,
Adam, estranged in look and alter'd style,

Speech intermitted thus to Eve renew'd :




Would thou hadst hearken'd to my words, and staid With me, as I besought thee, when that strange Desire of wandering, this unhappy morn,


I know not whence possess'd thee; we had then
Remain'd still happy; not as now, despoil'd
Of all our good; shamed, naked, miserable!
Let none henceforth seek needless cause to approve
The faith they owe; when earnestly they seek 1140
Such proof, conclude, they then begin to fail.


To whom, soon moved with touch of blame, thus What words have pass'd thy lips, Adam, severe ! Imputest thou that to my default, or will

Of wandering as thou call'st it, which who knows 1145
But might as ill have happen'd thou being by,
Or to thyself perhaps? Hadst thou been there,
Or here the attempt, thou couldst not have discern'd
Fraud in the Serpent, speaking as he spake ;
No ground of enmity between us known,
Why he should mean me ill, or seek to harm.
Was I to have never parted from thy side?


As good have grown there still a lifeless rib.
Being as I am, why didst not thou, the head,
Command me absolutely not to go,


Going into such danger, as thou saidst ?

Too facile then, thou didst not much gainsay;
Nay, didst permit, approve, and fair dismiss.
Hadst thou been firm and fix'd in thy dissent,
Neither had I transgress'd, nor thou with me.


To whom, then first incensed, Adam replied:

Is this the love, is this the recompense

Of mine to thee, ingrateful Eve! express'd
Immutable, when thou wert lost, not I;

Who might have lived, and joy'd immortal bliss, 1165
Yet willingly chose rather death with thee?
And am I now upbraided, as the cause
Of thy transgressing? Not enough severe,

It seems, in thy restraint; What could I more?
I warn'd thee, I admonish'd thee, foretold
The danger, and the lurking enemy


That lay in wait; beyond this had been force;

And force upon free will hath here no place.

But confidence then bore thee on; secure
Either to meet no danger, or to find


Matter of glorious trial; and perhaps

1 also err'd, in overmuch admiring

What seem'd in thee so perfect, that I thought
No evil durst attempt thee; but I rue

The error now, which is become my crime,


And thou the accuser. Thus it shall befal

Him, who, to worth in women overtrusting,

Lets her will rule: restraint she will not brook;
And, left to herself, if evil thence ensue,

She first his weak indulgence will accuse.
Thus they in mutual accusation spent


The fruitless hours, but neither self-condemning;
And of their vain contést appear'd no end.



Man's transgression known, the guardian Angels forsake Paradise, and return up to Heaven to approve their vigilance, and are approved; God declaring that the entrance of Satan could not be by them prevented. He sends his Son to judge the transgressors, who descends and gives sentence accordingly; then in pity clothes them both, and reascends. Sin and Death, sitting till then at the gates of Hell, by wondrous sympathy feeling the success of Satan in this new world, and the sin by Man there committed, resolve to sit no longer confined in Hell, but to follow Satan their sire up to the place of Man: To make the way easier from Hell to this world to and fro, they pave a broad highway or bridge over Chaos, according to the tract that Satan first made; then, preparing for Earth, they meet him, proud of his success, return ing to Hell; their mutual gratulation. Satan arrives at Pande monium, in full assembly relates with boasting his success against Man; instead of applause is entertained with a general hiss by all his audience, transformed with himself also suddenly into serpents, according to his doom given in Paradise; then, deluded with a show of the forbidden tree springing up before them, they, greedily reaching to take of the fruit, chew dust and bitter ashes. The proceedings of Sin and Death: God foretels the final victory of his Son over them, and the renewing of all things; but, for the present, commands his Angels to make several alterations in the Heavens and elements. Adam, more and more perceiving his fallen condition, heavily bewails, rejects the condclement of Eve; she persists, and at length appeases him: then, to evade the curse likely to fall on their offspring, proposes to Adam violent ways, which he approves not; but, conceiving better hope, puts her in mind of the late promise made then, that her seed should be revenged on the Serpent; and exhorts her with him to seek peace of the offended Deity, by repentance and supplication.

MEANWHILE the heinous and despiteful act
Of Satan, done in Paradise; and how
He, in the Serpent, had perverted Eve,
Her husband she, to taste the fatal fruit,
Was known in Heaven; for what can scape the
Of God all-seeing, or deceive his heart
Omniscient? who, in all things wise and just

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