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"The wise man's cumbrance, if not snare ;—more apt

"To slacken Virtue, and abate her edge,


"Than prompt her to do aught may merit praise.

"What if with like aversion I reject

"Riches and realms? yet not, for that a crown,

"Golden in show, is but a wreath of thorns,—

"Brings dangers, troubles, cares, and sleepless nights, 460 "To him who wears the regal diadem,

"When on his shoulders each man's burden lies ;-
"For therein stands the office of a king;

"His honour, virtue, merit, and chief praise;
"That for the public all this weight he bears.
"Yet he, who reigns within himself,1 and rules
"Passions, desires, and fears, is more a king;
"Which every wise and virtuous man attains;
"And who attains not, ill aspires to rule
"Cities of men, or headstrong multitudes,
"Subject himself to anarchy within,



"Or lawless passions in him, which he serves.
“But to guide nations in the way of truth
"By saving doctrine, and from error lead
"To know, and knowing worship God aright,—
"Is yet more kingly; this attracts the soul,
"Governs the inner man, the nobler part:
"That other o'er the body only reigns,
"And oft by force; which, to a generous mind,
"So reigning, can be no sincere delight.




Besides, to give a kingdom hath been thought "Greater and nobler done, and to lay down "Far more magnanimous, than to assume!

"Riches are needless then, both for themselves,

"And for thy reason why they should be sought,- 485 "To gain a sceptre, oftest better missed."

vity and decent majesty, is as true an instance of the sublime as the descriptions of the battles of the angels in Paradise Lost.

1 He who reigns within himself, &c.-Compare Prov. xvi. 32.

2 Besides, to give a kingdom hath been thought greater, &c.-Our poet is thought to have had in view the case of Diocletian, Charles V., and others who had voluntarily resigned their crowns.



SATAN, in a speech of much flattering commendation, endeavours to awaken in Jesus a passion for glory, by particularizing various instances of conquests achieved, and great actions performed, by persons at an early period of life. Our Lord replies, by showing the vanity of worldly fame, and the improper means by which it is generally attained; and contrasts with it the true glory of religious patience, and virtuous wisdom, as exemplified in the character of Job. Satan justifies the love of glory from the example of God himself, who requires it from all his creatures. Jesus detects the fallacy of this argument, by showing that as goodness is the true ground on which glory is due to the great Creator of all things, sinful man can have no right whatever to it. Satan then urges 'our Lord respecting his claim to the throne of David: he tells him, that the kingdom of Judea, being at that time a province of Rome, cannot be got possession of without much personal exertion on his part, and presses him to lose no time in beginning to reign. Jesus refers him to the time allotted for this, as for all other things; and, after intimating somewhat respecting his own previous sufferings, asks Satan why he was so solicitous for the exaltation of one whose rising was destined to be his fall. Satan replies, that his own desperate state, by excluding all hope, leaves little room for fear; and that, as his own punishment was equally doomed, he is not interested in preventing the reign of one, from whose apparent benevolence he might rather hope for some interference in his favour. Satan still pursues his former incitements; and, supposing that the seeming reluctance of Jesus to be thus advanced might arise from his being unacquainted with the world and its glories, conveys him to the summit of a high mountain, and from thence shows him most of the kingdoms of Asia, particularly pointing out to his notice some extraordinary military preparations of the Parthians to resist the incursions of the Scythians. He then informs our Lord, that he showed him this purposely, that he might see how necessary military exertions are to retain the possession of kingdoms, as well as to subdue them at first; and advises him to consider how impossible it was to maintain Judea against two such powerful neighbours as the Romans and Parthians, and how necessary it would be to form an alliance with one or other of them. He recommends, and engages to secure to him, that of the Par

thians; and tells him that by this means his power will be defended against any attempt of Rome, that he will be able to extend his glory wide, and even accomplish, what alone would make his throne the throne of David, the restoration of the ten tribes, still in captivity. Jesus, having noticed the vanity of military efforts or of the arm of flesh, says, that at the appointed time for ascending his allotted throne he shall not be slack; remarks on Satan's zeal for the deliverance of the Israelites, whose constant enemy he had been; declares their servitude to be the reward of their idolatry; but adds, that at a future time it may perhaps please God to restore them to liberty and their country.

So spake the Son of God; and Satan stood
Awhile, as mute, confounded what to say,
What to reply, confuted, and convinced
Of his weak arguing and fallacious drift :1
At length, collecting all his serpent wiles,"
With soothing words renewed, him thus accosts:
"I see thou knowest what is of use to know,
"What best to say canst say, to do canst do;
"Thy actions to thy words accord; thy words
"To thy large heart give utterance due; thy heart
"Contains of good, wise, just, the perfect shape.
"Should kings and nations from thy mouth consult,
66 Thy counsel would be as the oracle



"Urim and Thummim,- those oraculous gems
"On Aaron's breast; or tongue of seers old
"Infallible or wert thou sought to deeds
"That might require the array of war, thy skill
"Of conduct would be such, that all the world
"Could not sustain thy prowess, or subsist
"In battle, though against thy few in arms.



1 Fallacious drift, -aim at deceiving.

2 Collecting all his serpent wiles,-Compare Paradise Regained, b. i. 1. 120, 66 girded with snaky wiles."

3 To thy large heart give utterance due.-After the Hebrew idiom, the word heart, as used here, means rather the understanding than the affections. Compare the character of the Saviour drawn by Satan when addressing his compeers, Paradise Regained, b. ii. 1. 139, "amplitude of mind to largest deeds."

4 Urim and Thummim,-See Paradise Lost, b. vi. 1. 761, note. 5 Skill of conduct," skill to guide an army; generalship."

"These godlike virtues wherefore dost thou hide, Affecting private life, or more obscure

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"In savage wilderness? Wherefore deprive
"All Earth her wonder at thy acts, thyself
"The fame and glory?-glory, the reward
"That sole excites1 to high attempts, the flame
"Of most erected2 spirits, most tempered pure
"Ethereal, who all pleasures else despise,
"All treasures and all gain esteem as dross,
"And dignities and powers all but the highest!
Thy years are ripe3 and over-ripe; the son

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"Of Macedonian Philip had ere these

"Won Asia, and the throne of Cyrus held

"At his dispose; young Scipio had brought down
"The Carthaginian pride; young Pompey, quelled
"The Pontic king, and in triumph had rode.
"Yet years, and to ripe years judgment mature,
"Quench not the thirst of glory, but augment.
"Great Julius,5 whom now all the world admires,
"The more he grew in years, the more inflamed
"With glory, wept that he had lived so long
"Inglorious :-but thou yet art not too late."

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1 Glory, the reward that sole excites, &c.-See the Saviour's correction of Satan's praise of glory, 1. 60-95, and compare with Lycidas, 1. 70-84.

2 Erected," animated, high-minded, aspiring;" a classical expression. Contrast with the state of mind described in Ps. xliv. 25; cxix. 25.

3 Thy years are ripe, &c.—Our Saviour was baptized when he was about "thirty years of age," Luke iii. 23. Alexander the Great, son of Macedonian Philip, was but twenty years old when he began to reign, and achieved his extraordinary conquests within the next twelve years, dying in his thirty-third year. Scipio Africanus was only twenty-four years old when sent proconsul into Spain, and only about twenty-eight when he was chosen consul before the usual age, and transferred the war against the Carthaginians into Africa; and thus "freed his wasted country from Punic (Carthaginian) rage," 1. 102. Pompey was above forty when he took command against Mithridates, king of Pontus; but he had signalized himself by many extraordinary actions in his younger years, and had obtained the honour of two triumphal processions.

4 Dispose, for disposal.

5 Great Julius,-Julius Cæsar, who conquered Gaul, and carried the Roman arms into Britain, when reading the history of Alexander, wept that at his age Alexander had conquered so many nations, while he had done as yet nothing memorable.

To whom our Saviour calmly thus replied: "Thou neither dost persuade me to seek wealth "For empire's sake, nor empire to affect1

"For glory's sake, by all thy argument.

"For what is glory but the blaze of fame,

"The people's praise?-if always praise unmixed"And what the people but a herd confused,

"A miscellaneous rabble, who extol





Things vulgar, and, well weighed, scarce worth the praise??

They praise, and they admire, they know not what, "And know not whom, but as one leads the other; "And what delight to be by such extolled, "To live upon their tongues, and be their talk, "Of whom to be dispraised were no small praise ?"His lot who dares be singularly good! "The intelligent among them, and the wise, "Are few, and glory scarce of few is raised. "This is true glory and renown ;-when God, Looking on the earth, with approbation marks "The just man, and divulges3 him through Heaven "To all his angels, who, with true applause, "Recount his praises: thus he did to Job,

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66 When, to extend his fame through Heaven and Earth, 65 "As thou to thy reproach mayst well remember, "He asked thee, 'Hast thou seen my servant Job?' "Famous he was in Heaven, on Earth less known ;

"Where glory is false glory,―attributed

"To things not glorious, men not worthy of fame. 70 "They err, who count it glorious to subdue1

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By conquest far and wide, to overrun

"Large countries, and in field great battles win,

1 Affect,- -"aim at."

2 And, well weighed, scarce worth the praise.-The things extolled by the people, when well weighed, will be found scarce worth the praise bestowed upon them.

3 Divulges,-" publishes, makes known;" so Samson Agonistes, 1. 1248. They err who count it glorious to subdue, &c. Compare Paradise Lost, b. xi. 1. 691-697, and 789-795.

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