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Rar off and fearless, nor with cause to boast,
Begins his dire attempt, which nigh the birth 13
Now rolling, boils in his tumultuous breast,
And, like a dev’lish engine, back recoils
Upon himself: horror and doubt distract
His troubled thoughts, and from the bottom stir
The Hell within him; for within him Hell 20
He brings, and round about him; nor from Hell
One step no more than from himself can fly
By change of place : now Conscience wakes Despair
That slumber'd, wakes the bitter memory
Of what he was, what is, and what must be 25
Worse ; of worse deeds worse suff'rings must ensue.
Sometimes tow'rds Eden, which now in his view
Lay pleasant, his grieved look he fixes sad;
Sometimes tow'rds Heav'n and the full-blazing Sun,
Which now sat high in his meridian tow'r: 30
Then much revolving, thus in sighs began :

O thou that with surpassing glory crown'd,
Look'st from thy sole dominion like the God
Of this new world ; at whose sight all the stars
Hide their diminish'd heads; to thee I call, 35
But with no friendly voice, and add thy name,
O Sun, to tell thee how I hate thy beams,
That bring to my remembrance from what state
I fell, how glorious once above thy sphere;
Till pride and worse ambition threw me down 40
Warring in Heav'n against Heav'n's matchless King:
Ah wherefore! he deserved no such return
From me, whom he created what I was
In that bright eminence, and with his good
Upbraided none; nor was his service hard. 45
What could be less than to afford him praise,
The easiest recompense, and pay him thanks,
How due! yet all his good proved ill in me,
And wrought but malice; lifted up so high,
I sdeign’d subjection, and thought one step higher
Would set me high'st, and in a moment quit 51
The debt immense of endless gratitude,

24. Memory is here used in the sense of reflection or conside. ration.

32. Milton first thought of writing a tragedy on the Loss of Pa radise, and the first ten lines of this speech formed its opening.

50. Sdeign'd, for disdad, from the Italian, sdegnare.

So burdensome still paying, still to owe,
Forgetful what from Him I still received,
And understood not that a grateful mind

By owing owes not, but still pays, at once
Indebted and discharged: what burden then?
O had his pow'rful destiny ordain'd
Me some inferior Angel, I had stood
Then happy; no unbounded hope had raised 60
Ambition. Yet, why not? some other Pow'r,
As great might have aspired, and me, though mean,
Drawn to his part; but other Pow'rs as great
Pell not, but stand unshaken, from within
Or from without, to all temptations arm’d. 65
Hadst thou the same free will and pow'r to stand ?
Thou hadst. Whom hast thou then or what t'accuse,
But Heav'n's free love dealt equally to all ?
Be then his love accursed, since love or hate,
To me alike, it deals eternal woe.

70 Nay, cursed be thou; since against his thy will Chose freely what it now so justly rues. Me miserable! which way shall I fly Infinite wrath, and infinite despair? Which way I fly is Hell; myself am Hell; 75 And in the lowest deep a lower deep Still threat’ning to devour me opens wide, To which the Hell suffer seems a Heav'n O then at last relent." Is there no place Left for repentance, none for pardon left ?

80 None left but by submission; and that word DISDAIN forbids me, and my dread of shame Among the Spirits beneath, whom I seduced With other promises and other vaunts Than to submit, boasting I could subdue

85 Th’Omnipotent. Ay me, they little know How dearly I abide that boast so vain, Under what torments inwardly I groan, While they adore me on the throne of Hell ! With diadem and sceptre high advanced,

00 The lower still I fall, only supreme In misery! such joy ambition finds. But say I could repent, and could obtain

55. Understood not, to be connected with the preceding vertus

By act of grace my former state, how soon 94
Would highth recall high thoughts, how soon unsay
What feigu'd submission swore ! ease would recant
Vows made in pain, as violent and void ;
For never can true reconcilement grow
Where wounds of deadly hate have pierced so deep:
Which would but lead me to a worse relapse, 100
And heavier fall : so should I purchase dear
Short intermission bought with double smart.
This knows my Punisher: therefore, as far
From granting he, as I from begging peace.
All hope excluded thus, behold, instead

Of us outcast, exiled, his new delight,
Mankind created, and for him this world.
So farewell hope, and with hope farewell fear,
Farewell remorse : all good to me is lost :
Evil be thou my good; by thee at least

110 Divided empire with Heav'n's Kivg I hold, By thee, and more than half perhaps will reign; As Man ere long, and this new world shall know.

Thus while he spake, each passion dimm’d his face; Thrice changed with pale, ire, envy, and despair; 115 Which marr'd his borrow'd visage, and betray'd Him counterfeit, if any eye beheld. For heav'nly minds from such distempers foul Are ever clear. Whereof he soon aware, Each perturbation sinooth'd with outward calm, 120 Artificer of fraud ; and was the first That practised falsehood under saintly show, Deep malice to conceal, couch'd with revenge : Yet not enough had practised to deceive Uriel once warn'd; whose eye pursued him down 125 The way he went, and on th’ Assyrian mount Saw him disfigured more than could befall Spirit of happy sort; his gestures fierce He mark'd and mad demeanour, then alone, As he supposed, all unobserved, unseen.

130 So on he fares, and to the border comes Of Eden, where delicious Paradise, Now nearer, crowns with her inclosure green, As with a rural mound, the champaign head Of a steep wilderness, whose hairy sides 135 With thicket overgrown, grotesque and wild,

Access deny'd; and over head up grew,
Insuperable height of loftiest shade,
Cedar, and pine, and fir, and branching palm;
A sylvan scene; and as the ranks ascend 140
Shade above shade, a woody theatre
Of stateliest view. Yet higher than their tops
The verdurous wall of Paradise up sprung;
Which to our gen'ral sire gave prospect large
Into his nether empire neighb'ring round: 145
And higher than that wall a circling row
Of goodliest trees loaden with fairest fruit,
Blossoms and fruits at once of golden hue,
Appear'd with gay enamel'd colours mix'd :
On which the Sun more glad impress'd his beams
Than in fair ev'ning cloud, or humid bow, 151
When God hath show'r'd the earth : so lovely seem'd
That landskip: and of pure now purer air
Meets his approach, and to the heart inspires
Vernal delight and joy, able to drive

All sadness but despair: now gentle gales,
Fanning their odorif'rous wings, dispense
Native perfumes, and whisper whence they stole
Those balmy spoils. As when to them who sail
Beyond the Cape of Hope, and now are past 160
Mozambique, off at sea north-east winds blow
Sabean odours from the spicy shore
Of Araby the Blest; with such delay (league
Well pleased they slack their course, and many a
Cheer'd with the grateful smell old Ocean smiles :
So entertain'd those odorous sweets the Fiend 166
Who came their bane, though with them better pleased
Than Asmodèus with the fisby fume
That drove him, though enamour'd, from the spouse

151. The description which Milton has given of Paradise is similar to those of Homer, Spenser, and Tasso, in their accounts of the gardens in which the scene of their poems sometimes lies. To these may be added Ariosto's and Marino's, it being generally allowed, that though Milton's is superior to any other, that the Italian come nearest in beauty and perfection.

158. An imitation is here observed of Shakspeare in the Twelfth Night, or of Ariosto, Orlan. Fur. 6. 34. st. 51.

162. Mozambique is an island on the eastern coast of Africa. As the north-east wind blows contrary to those who have doabled the Cape, they are nence obliged to slack their coune. Sabean from Saba, a city and province of Arabia Felix

168. See Tobit viii.

Of Tobit's son, and with a vengeance sent 170 From Media post to Egypt, there fast bound.

Now to th' ascent of that steep savage hill Satan had journey'd on, pensive and slow; But further way found none, so thick intwined, As one continued brake, the undergrowth 175 Of shrubs and tangling bushes had perplex'd All path of man or beast that pass'd that way: One gate there only was, and that look'd east On th' other side ; which when th'arch-felon saw, Due entrance he disdain'd, and in contempt, 180 At one slight bound high overleap'd all bound Of hill or highest wall, and sheer within Lights on his feet. As when a prowling wolf, Whom hunger drives to seek new haunt for prey, Watching where shepherds pen their flocks at eve In hurdled cots amid the field secure,

186 Leaps o'er the fence with ease into the fold : Or as a thief bent to unhoard the cash Of some rich burgher, whose substantial doors, Cross-barr'd and bolted fast, fear no assault, 190 In at the window climbs, or o'er the tiles : So clomb this first grand thief into God's fold; So since into his church lewd hirelings climb. Thence up he flew, and on the tree of life, The middle tree and highest there that grew, 195 Sat like a cormorant; yet not true life Thereby regain'd, but sat devising death To them who lived ; nor on the virtue thought Of that life-giving plant, but only used For prospect, what well used had been the pledge Of immortality. So little knows Any, but God alone, to value right The good before him, but perverts best things To worst abuse, or to their meanest use. Beneath him, with new wonder, now he views 205 To all delight of human sense exposed In narrow room Nature's whole wealth, yea more, A Heav'n on Earth : for blissful Paradise

183. A wolf is a frequent subject of comparison in the poets, but for the whole of this, see John x. 1

193. Lewd, impious or wicked. 195. Gen. ij. 9 In the midst, signifies the excellency as well is the situation of the tree.


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