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The Son of God presents to his Father the prayers of our first parents now repenting, and intercedes for mem: God accepts them, but declares that they must no longer abide in Paradise ; sends Michael with a band of cherubim to dispossess them ; but first to reveal to Adam future things :. Michael's coming down. Adam shows to Eve certain ominous signs: he discerns Michael's approach : goes out to meet him: the angel denounces their departure. Eve's lamentation. Adam pleads, but submits: the angel leads him up to a high hill; sets before him in vision what shall happen till the flood.

THUS they, in lowliest plight; repentant stood,

Praying; for from the Mercy-seat above
Prevenient grace descending had removed
The stony from their hearts, and made new flesh
Regenerate grow instead, that sighs now breathed
Unutterable, which the Spirit of prayer
Inspired, and winged for Heaven with speedier flight
Than loudest oratory. Yet their port
Not of mean suitors; nor important less
Seemed their petition, than when the ancient pair,
In fables old, less ancient yet than these,
Deucalion and chaste Pyrrha, to restore
The race of mankind drowned, before the shrine
Of Themis stood devout. To Heaven their prayers
Flew up, nor missed the way, by envious winds
Blown vagabond or frustrate : in they passed
Dimensionless through heavenly doors; then clad
With incense, where the golden altar fumed,
By their great Intercessor, came in sight
Before the Father's throne: them the glad Son
Presenting, thus to intercede began:

See, Father, what first-fruits on Earth are sprung
From Thy implanted grace in man; these sighs ?".
And prayers, which, in this golden censer, mixed


With incense, I, thy priest, before thee bring;
Fruits of more pleasing savor, from thy seed
Sown with contrition in his heart, than those
Which, his own hand manuring, all the trees
Of Paradise could have produced, ere fallen
From innocence. Now, therefore, bend thine ear
To supplication; hear his sighs, though mute,
Unskillful with what words to pray; and let me
Interpret for him, me, his Advocate
And propitiation; all his works on me,
Good, or not good, ingraft; my merit those

Shall perfect, and for these my death shall pay.
Accept me; and, in me, from these receive
The smell of peace toward mankind; let him live
Before thee reconciled, at least his days
Numbered, though sad, till death, his doom which I
To mitigate thus plead, not to reverse —
To better life shall yield him, where with me
All my redeemed may dwell in joy and bliss,
Made one with me, as I with Thee am one.

To whom the Father, without cloud, serene:
All thy request for Man, accepted Son,
Obtain; all thy request was my decree.
But, longer in that Paradise to dwell,
The law I gave to nature him forbids;
Those pure immortal elements that know
No gross, no unharmonious mixture foul,
Eject him, tainted now, and purge him off,
As a distemper gross, to air as gross,
And mortal food, as may dispose him best
For dissolution wrought by 'sin, that first
Distempered all things, and of incorrupt
Corrupted. I, at first, with two fair gifts
Created him endowed, with happiness,
And immortality; that fondly lost,
This other served but to eternize woe,


Till I provided death : so death becomes
His final remedy, and, after life,
Tried in sharp tribulation, and refined
By faith and faithful works, to second life,
Waked in the renovation of the just,
Resigns him up with heaven and earth renewed.
But let us call to synod all the blest
Through Heaven's wide bounds; from them I will not hide
My judgments, how with mankind I proceed,
As how with peccant Angels late they saw,
And in their state, though firm, stood more confirmed.

He ended, and the Son gave signal high
To the bright minister that watched. He blew
His trumpet, heard in Oreb since, perhaps,
When God descended, and, perhaps, once more
To sound a general doom. The angelic blast
Filled all the regions. From their blissful bowers
Of amaranthine shade, fountain, or spring,
By the waters of life, where'er they sat
In fellowships of joy, the Sons of Light
Hasted, resorting to the summons high,
And took their seats, till, from his throne supreme,
The Almighty thus pronounced his sovereign will:

O Sons, like one of us Man is become,
To know both good and evil, since his taste
Of that defended fruit; but let him boast
His knowledge of good lost, and evil got;
Happier, had it sufficed him to have known
Good by itself, and evil not at all.
He sorrows now, repents, and prays contrite,
My motions in him ; longer than they move,
His heart I know how variable and vain,
Self-left. Lest, therefore, his now bolder hand
Reach also of the Tree of Life, and eat,
And live forever, — dream at least to live
For ever — to remove him I decree,

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And send him from the garden forth to till
The ground whence he was taken, fitter soil.
Michael, this my behest have thou in charge;
Take to thee from among the cherubim
Thy choice of flaming warriors; lest the Fiend,
Or in behalf of man, or to invade
Vacant possession, some new trouble raise.
Haste thee, and from the Paradise of God,
Without remorse, drive out the sinful pair;
From hallowed ground the unholy; and denounce
To them, and to their progeny, from thence
Perpetual banishment. Yet, lest they faint
At the sad sentence rigorously urged-
For I behold them softened, and with tears
Bewailing their excess — all terror hide.
If patiently thy bidding they obey,
Dismiss them not disconsolate ; reveal
To Adam what shall come in future days,
As I shall thee enlighten; intermix
My covenant in the woman's seed renewed.
So send them forth, though sorrowing, yet in peace.
And on the east side of the garden, place,
Where entrance up from Eden easiest climbs,
Cherubic watch; and of a sword the flame
Wide-waving, all approach far off to fright,
And guard all passage to the Tree of Life,
Lest Paradise a receptacle prove
To spirits foul, and all my trees their prey, ,
With whose stolen fruit Man once more to delude.

He ceased; and the archangelic Power prepared
For swift descent; with him the cohort bright
Of watchful Cherubim. Four faces each
Had, like a double Janus; all their shape
Spangled with eyes more numerous than those
Of Argus and more wakeful than to drowse,
Charmed with Arcadian pipe, the pastoral reed


Of Hermes, or his opiate rod. Meanwhile,
To re-salute the world with sacred light,
Leucothea waked, and with fresh dews embalmed
The earth; when Adam and first matron Eve
Had ended now their orisons, and found
Strength added from above, new hope to spring
Out of despair, joy, but with fear yet linked:

: While thus to Eve his welcome words renewed:

Eve, easily may faith admit that all The good which we enjoy from Heaven descends; But that from us aught should ascend to Heaven So prevalent, as to concern the mind Of God, high-blest, or to incline his will, Hard to belief may seem; yet this will prayer, Or one short sigh of human breath, upborne Even to the seat of God. For since I sought By prayer the offended Deity to appease, Kneeled, and before Him humbled all my heart, Methought I saw Him placable and mild, Bending his ear; persuasion in me grew That I was heard with favor; peace returned Home to my breast, and to my memory His promise, that thy seed shall bruise our Foe; Which, then not minded in dismay, yet now Assures me that the bitterness of death Is past, and we shall live. Whence, hail to thee, Eve, rightly called Mother of all Mankind, Mother of all things living, since by thee Man is to live, and all things live for Man.

To whom thus Eve, with sad demeanor, meek: Ill-worthy I such title should belong To me, transgressor, who, for thee ordained A help, became thy snare: to me reproach Rather belongs, distrust, and all dispraise. But infinite in pardon was my Judge, That I, who first brought death on all, am graced

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