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UI legis Amiffam Paradifum, grandia magni Carmina Miltoni, quid nifi cuncta legis? Res cunctas, & cunctarum primordia rerum, Et fata, & fines continet ifte liber. Intima panduntur magni penetralia mundi, Scribitur & toto quicquid in orbe latet: Terræque, tractufque maris, cœlumque profundum, Sulphureumque Erebi, flammivomumque fpecus: Quæque colunt terras, pontumque, & Tartara cæca, Quæque colunt fummi lucida regna poli: Et quodcunque ullis conclufum eft finibus ufquam, Et fine fine Chaos, & fine fine Deus: Et fine fine magis, fi quid magis eft fine fine, In Chrifto erga homines conciliatus amor. Hæc qui fperaret quis crederet effe futura ? Et tamen hæc hodie terra Britanna legit. O quantos in bella duces! quæ protulit arma! Quæ canit, & quanta prælia dira tuba! Cœleftes acies! atque in certamine cœlum! Et quæ cæleftes pugna deceret agros! Quantus in æthereis tollit fe Lucifer armis ! Atque ipfo graditur vix Michaële minor! Quantis, & quam funeftis concurritur iris, Dum ferus hic ftellas protegit, ille rapit!




Dum vulfos montes ceu tela reciproca torquent,
Et non mortali defuper igne pluunt :'
Štat dubius cui fe parti concedat Olympus,
Et metuit pugnæ non fupereffe fuæ.
At fimul in cœlis Meffiæ infignia fulgent,
Et currus animes, armaque digna Deo,
Horrendumque rotæ ftrident, et fæva rotarum
Erumpunt torvis fulgura luminibus,

Et flammæ vibrant, & vera tonitrua rauco
Admiftis flammis infonuere polo :
Excidit attonitis mens omnis, & impetus omnis,
Et caffis dextris irrita tela cadunt;
Ad pœnas fugiunt, & ceu foret Orcus afylum,
Infernis certant condere fe tenebris.
Cedite Romani Scriptores, cedite Graii,
Et quos fama recens vel celebravit anus.
Hæc quicunque leget tantùm ceciniffe putabit
Mæonidem ranas, Virgilium culices.



WHEN I beheld the Poet blind, yet bold,

In slender book his vast design unfold,

Meffiah crown'd, God's reconcil'd decree,
Rebelling Angels, the forbidden tree,

Heaven, Hell, Earth, Chaos, all; the argument
Held me a while mifdoubting his intent,
That he would ruin (for I saw him strong)
The facred truths to fable and old fong,
(So Sampfon grop'd the temple's posts in spite)
The world o'erwhelming to revenge his fight,


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Yet as I read, ftill growing lefs fevere, I lik'd his project, the fuccefs did fear; Through that wide field how he his way should find, O'er which lame faith leads understanding blind; Left he perplex'd the things he would explain, And what was eafy he should render vain.

Or if a work fo infinite he spann'd,
Jealous I was that fome lefs skilful hand
(Such as difquiet always what is well,
And by ill imitating would excel)

Might hence prefume the whole creation's day
To change in scenes, and fhow it in a play.
Pardon me, mighty Poet; nor despise
My caufelefs, yet not impious, furmife.
But I am now convinc'd, and none will dare
Within thy labours to pretend a share.

Thou haft not mifs'd one thought that could be fit,

And all that was improper doft omit :

So that no room is here for writers left,
But to detect their ignorance or theft.

That majesty which through thy work doth reign,
Draws the devout, deterring the profane.
And things divine thou treat'ft of in such state
As them preferves, and thee, inviolate.
At once delight and horror on us feize,
Thou fing'ft with fo much gravity and ease;
And above human flight doft foar aloft
With plume fo ftrong, fo equal, and fo foft.
The bird nam'd from that Paradise you fing
So never flags, but always keeps on wing.
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