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Attended with ten thousand thousand saints
This saw his hapless foes, but stood obdur'd, 785 And to rebellious fight rallied their powers Insensate, hope conceiving from despair :
In heavenly spirits could such perverseness dwell?
787 hope] Virg. Æn. ii. 354.
'Una salus victis, nullam sperare salutem.' and Q. Curt. L. v. c. iv.
'Sæpe desperatio spei causa est.' Newton.
Took envy, and, aspiring to his highth,
To final battle drew, disdaining flight,
Stand still in bright array, ye saints; here stand, Ye angels arm'd, this day from battle rest; Faithful hath been your warfare, and of GoD Accepted, fearless in his righteous cause, And as ye have receiv'd, so have ye done Invincibly but of this cursed crew The punishment to other hand belongs; Vengeance is his, or whose he sole appoints : Number to this day's work is not ordain'd, Nor multitude; stand only and behold GOD's indignation on these godless pour'd By me; not you, but me they have despis'd, Yet envied against me is all their rage, Because the Father, t' whom in heaven supreme Kingdom, and power, and glory appertains, Hath honour'd me according to his will. Therefore to me their doom he hath assign'd; That they may have their wish, to try with me In battle which the stronger proves, they all, Or I alone against them; since by strength
797 last] Tickell and Bentley read 'lost.'
They measure all, of other excellence
So spake the Son, and into terror chang'd His count'nance, too severe to be beheld And full of wrath bent on his enemies. At once the Four spread out their starry wings With dreadful shade contiguous, and the orbs Of his fierce chariot roll'd, as with the sound Of torrent floods, or of a numerous host. He on his impious foes right onward drove, Gloomy as night; under his burning wheels The steadfast empyrean shook throughout, All but the throne itself of GOD. Full soon Among them he arriv'd, in his right hand Grasping ten thousand thunders, which he sent Before him, such as in their souls infix'd Plagues they astonish'd all resistance lost, All courage; down their idle weapons dropp'd; O'er shields, and helms, and helmed heads he rode Of thrones and mighty seraphim prostrate, That wish'd the mountains now might be again Thrown on them as a shelter from his ire. Nor less on either side tempestuous fell His arrows, from the fourfold visag'd Four, Distinct with eyes, and from the living wheels
841 prostrate] Fairfax and Spenser accent this word on the last syllable. v. Tasso, c. i. 83;
'And lay his powers prostráte.' F. Qu. xii. 39.
Distinct alike with multitude of eyes;
Yet half his strength he put not forth, but check'd
858 thunder] See Beaumont's Psyche, c. xx. st. 102.
'Gli alberi intorno ruinando atterra.' Thyer.
No bottom saw, to bid their ruine stand.'
868 ruining] Falling down with ruin, from the Italian ruinando.
v. Tasso's Gier. Lib. ix. 39.
Affrighted; but strict fate had cast too deep
Through his wild anarchy; so huge a rout
Yawning receiv'd them whole, and on them clos'd;
With jubilee advanc'd; and as they went,
877 house] Fairfax's Tasso, ix. st. 59.
Fit house for them, the house of grief and pain. Newton.
Thus measuring things in heaven by things on earth, At thy request, and that thou may'st beware By what is past, to thee I have reveal'd What might have else to human race been hid;