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To us, as likely tasting to attain
935 Proportional ascent, which cannot be But to be gods, or angels, demigods. Nor can I think, that God, Creator wise, Though threat’ning, will in earnest fo destroy Us his prime creatures, dignify'd so high,
940 Set over all his works, which in our fall, For us created, needs with us must fail, Dependent made ; fo God shall uncreate, Be fruitrate, do, undo, and labour lose; Not well conceiv'd of God, who, though his power Creation could repeat, yet would be loath Us to abolilh, left the adversary Triumph and fay; Fickle their state whom God Most favours; who can please him long? Me first He ruin'd, now mankind; whom will he next? 950 Matter of scorn, not to be giv'n the foe. However, I with thee have fix'd my lot, Certain to undergo like doom: if death Consort with thee, death is to me as life; So forcible within my heart I feel
955 The bond of nature draw me to my own, My own in thee, for what thou art is mine ; Our state cannot be fever'd, we are one, Une flesh; to lose thee were to lose myself.
So Adam; and thus Eve to him reply'd. O glorious trial of exceeding love, Illustrious evidence, example high! Engaging me to emulate, but short Of thy perfection, how shall I attain, Adam? from whose dear fide I boast me sprung.965 And gladly of our union hear thee speak, One heart, one foul in both, whereof good proof This day affords, declaring thee resolv'd, Rather than death, or ought than death more dread,
Shall separate us, link'd in love so dear, 970
980 Pernicious to thy peace, chiefly affur'd Remarkably fo late of thy fo true, So faithful love unequall'd; but I feel Far otherwise th’event, not death, but life Augmented, open'd eyes, new hopes, new joys, 985 Talte so divine, that what of sweet before Hath touch'd my sense, flat seems to this, and harsh. On my experience, Adam, freely taste, And fear of death deliver to the winds.
So saying, she embrac'd him, and for joy Tenderly wept; much won that he his love Had so ennobled, as of choice to’incur Divine displeasure for her fake, or death. In recompense (for fuch compliance bad Such recompense best merits,) from the bough 995 She gave him of that fair enticing fruit With lib'ral hand: He scrupled not to eat, Against his better knowledge; not deceiv'd, - But fondly overcome with female charm. Earth trembled from her intrails, as again 1000 In pangs, and nature gave a second groan; Sky lourd, and, muttering thunder, some fad drops Wept at completing of the mortal fin Original, while Adam took no thought,
Eating his fill; nor Eve to iterate
1005 Her former trespass fear'd, the more to soothe Him with her lov'd society; that now, As with new wine intoxicated both, They swim in mirth, and fancy that they feel Divinity within them breeding wings Wlierewith to scorn the carth. But that false fruit Far other operation first display'd, Carnal desire in flaming; he on Eve Began to caft lafcivious eyes, she him As wantonly repaid ; in luft they burn: 2015 Till Adam thus 'gan Eve to dalliance move.
Eve, now I see thou art exact of taste, And elegant, of fapience no small part, Since to each meaning favour we apply, And palate call judicious; I the praise
1020 Jield thee, fo well this day thou hait purvey’d. Much pleasure we have lost, while we abstain'd From this delightful fruit, nor known till now True relih, tasting ; if such pleasure be In things to us forbidd'n, it might be wishid, 1025 For this one tree had been forbidden ten. But come, so well refresh'd, now let'us play, As meet is, after such delicious fare ; For never did thy beauty since the day I saw thee first, and wedded thee, adorn'd 1030 With all perfections, so inflame my sense With ardor to enjoy thee, fairer now Than ever, bounty of this virtnous tree.
So said he, and forbore not glance or toy Of amorous intent, well understood
1035 Of Eve, whose eye darted contagious fire. Her hand he seiz'd, and to a shady tank, Thick overhead with verdant roof imbower'd, He led her nothing loath; flowers were the couch,
Panfies, and violets, and afphodel,
1040 And hyacinth, earth's freshest, foftest lap. There they their fill of love, and love's disport Took largely, of their mutual guilt the feal, The folace of their fin; till dewy sleep Oppress’d them, wearied with their ainorous play.
Soon as the force of that fallacious fruit, 1046 That with exhilarating vapour bland About their fpi'rits had play'd, and inmost powers Made err, was now exhald; and grosser sleep, Bred of unkindly fumes, with conscious dreams 1050 Incumber'd, now had left them; up they rose As from unreit, and, each the other viewing, Soon found their eyes how open'd, and their ininds How darken'd; innocence, that as a veil
1954 Had shadow'd them from knowing ill, was gone, Just confidence, and native righteousness, And honour from about them, naked left To guilty frame; he cover'd, but his robe Uncover'd more. So rose the Danite strong, Herculean Samson, froin the harlot-lap
1060 Of Philiftéan Dalilah, and wak'd Shorn of his strength; they destitute and bare Of all their virtue: filent, and in face Confounded, long they fat, as ftrucken inute, Till Adam, though not less than Eve abalh'd, 1065 At length give utterance to these words constrain'd.
O Eve, in evil hour thou didit give ear To that false worm, of whomfoever taught. To counterfeit man's voice; true in our fall, False in our promis'd rising, since our eyes *1070 Open'd we find indeed, and find we know Both good and ev'il, good lost, and evil got, Bad fruit of knowledge, if this be to know, Which leaves us naked thus, of honour void,
Of innocence, of faith, of purity,
1075 Our wonted ornaments now fold and fain'd, And in our faces evident the signs Of foul concupifcence; whence evil store, Ev'n shame, the last of evils; of the first Be sure then. How shall I behold the face 1980 Henceforth of God or angel, erit with joy And rapture so oft beheld ? thofe heav'nly shapes Will dazzle now this earthly with their blaze Insufferably bright. O might I here In folitude live savage, in fome glade
1085 Obfcur'd, where highelt woods, impenetrable To slar or sun-light, spread their umbrage broad And brown as ev'ning! Cover me, ye pines, Ye cedars, with innumerable boughs Hide me, where I may never see them more! 1090 But let us now, as in bad plight, devise What beit may for the present serve to hide The parts of each from other, that seem molt To shame obnoxious, and unfeemlieft feen; Some tree, whose broad smooth leaves together few'd, And girded on our loins, may cover round 1096 Those middle parts, that this new comer, shame, There fit not, and reproach us as unclean.
So counsellid he, and both together went Into the thickest wood; there foon they chose 1100 The fig-tree; not that kind for fruit renown'd, But such as, at this day to Indians known In Malabar or Decan, spreads her arms Branching fo broad and long, that in the ground The bended twigs take root, and daughters grow About the mother-tree, a pillar'd shade
1106 High overarch'd, and echoing walks Between; There oft the Indian herdsman, fhunning heat, Shelters in cool, and tends his parturing herds