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pleads, but fubmits: the angels leads him up to a high hill, fet before him in vifion what shall happen till the flood.



HE angel Michael continues from the flood to relate what shall fucceed; then, in the mention of Abraham, comes by degrees to explain, who that feed of the woman should be, which was promised Adam and Eve in the fall; his incarnation, death, efurrection, and ascension; the state of the church till Iris fecond coming. Adam greatly satisfied and recomforted by these relations and promifes defcends the hill with Michael; wakens Eve, who all this while had flept, but with gentle dreams compos'd to quietness of mind and fubmiffion. Michael in either hand leads them out of Paradife; the fiery fword waving behind them, and the cherubim taking their stations to guard the place,


F man's firft difobedience, and the fruit

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Of that forbidden tree, whofe mortal tafte

1. Brought death into the world, and all our woe,

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With lofs of Eden, till one greater man

Restore us, and regain the blisful feat,

Sing heav'nly muse, that on the secret top
Of Oreb, or of Sinai, didft infpire

That shepherd, who first taught the chosen feed,
In the beginning how the heav'ns and earth
Rofe out of chaos or if Sion hill

Delight thee more, and Siloa's brook that flow'd
Faft by the oracle of God; I thence

Invoke thy aid to my advent'rous fong,
That with no middle flight intends to foar
Above th' Aonian mount, while it pursues
Things unattempted yet in profe or rhime.
And chiefly thou, O Spirit, that doft prefer
Before all temples th'upright heart and pure,
Inftruct me, for thou know'ft; thou from the first
Wast present, and with mighty wings outspread,
Dove-like fat'ft brooding on the vast abyss,
And mad❜st it pregnant: what in me is dark
Illumine, what is low raise and support;
That to the highth of this great argument
I may affert eternal providence,

And justify the ways of God to men.

Say firft, for heav'n hides nothing from thy view,


Nor the deep tract of hell, fay first what cause
Mov'd our grand parents in that happy state,
Favour'd of heav'n fo highly, to fall off
From their Creator, and tranfgrefs his will
For one restraint, lords of the world befides ?
Who first seduc'd them to that foul revolt ?
Th'infernal ferpent; he it was whose guile
Stirr'd up with envy and revenge, deceiv'd
The mother of mankind, what time his pride
Had caft him out from heav'n, with all his hoft
Of rebel angels, by whose aid aspiring
To fet himself in glory above his peers,
He trusted to have equall'd the Most High,
If he oppos'd; and with ambitious aim
Against the throne and monarchy of God
Rais'd impious war in heav'n and battle proud
With vain attempt. Him the almighty power
Hurl'd headlong flaming from th’ethereal sky.
With hideous ruin and combuftion down
To bottomless perdition, there to dwell
In adamantine chains and penal fire,
Who durft defy th'Omnipotent to arms.

Nine times the space that measures day and night
To mortal men, he with his horrid crew

Lay vanquisht, rowling in the fiery gulph
Confounded though immortal: but his doom
Referv'd him to more wrath; for now the thought
Both of loft happiness and lasting pain

Torments him; round he throws his baleful eyes,
That witness'd huge affliction and dismay,
Mixt with obdurate pride and stedfast hate:

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At once as far as angels ken he views
The difmal fituation waste and wild,

A dungeon horrible, on all fides round

As one great furnace flam'd. yet from those flames
No light, but rather darkness vifible

Serv'd only to discover fights of woe,

Regions of forrow, doleful fhades, where peace
And rest can never dwell, hope never comes
That comes to all; but torture without end
Still urges, and a fiery deluge, fed
With ever-burning fulphur unconfum'd:
Such place eternal justice had prepar'd
For those rebellious, here their prison ordain'd
In utter darkness, and their portion set
As far remov'd from God and light of heav'n
As from the center thrice to the utmost pole.
O how unlike the place from whence they fell!
There the companions of his fall, o'erwhelm'd
With floods and whirlwinds of tempeftuous fire,
He foon discerns, and welt'ring by his fide

One next himself in power, and next in crime,
Long after known in Palestine, and nam'd
Beelzebub. To whom th'arch enemy,

And thence in heav'n call'd Satan, with bold words
Breaking the horrid filence thus began.

If thou beeft he; but O how fall'n! how chang'd
From him, who in the happy realms of light
Cloth'd with transcendent brightness didst outshine
Myriads though bright: if he whom mutual league,
United thoughts and counfels, equal hope
And hazard in the glorious enterprise,


Join'd with me once, now misery hath join'd

In equal ruin into what pit thou seest

From what highth fall'n, so much the ftronger prov'd

He with his thunder: and till then who knew
The force of those dire arms? yet not for thofe,
Nor what the potent victor in his rage

Can elfe inflict, do I repent or change,

Though chang'd in outward luftre; that fix'd mind,
And high difdain from sense of injur'd merit,
That with the Mightieft rais'd me to contend,
And to the fierce contention brought along
Innumerable force of fpirits arm'd,

That durft diflike his reign, and me preferring,
His utmost pow'r with adverse pow'r oppos'd
In dubious battel on the plains of heaven,
And shook his throne. What though the field be loft?
All is not loft; th' unconquerable will,

And study of revenge, immortal hate,
And courage never to submit or yield:
And what is else not to be overcome?
That glory never fhall his wrath or might
Extort from me. To bow and fue for grace
With fuppliant knee, and deify his power,
Who from the terror of this arm fo late
Doubted his empire; that were low indeed,
That were an ignominy, and shame beneath
This downfal; fince by fate the strength of Gods
And this empyreal substance cannot fail,
Since through experience of this great event
In arms not worse, in forefight much advanc'd,
We may with more fuccessful hope refolve

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