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1 charg'd thee, fay'ing, Thou shalt not eat thereof: 200
Curs'd is the ground for thy fake; thou in forrow
Shalt eat thereof all the days of thy life;
Thorns alfo' and thiftles it fhall bring thee forth
Unbid; and thou fhalt eat th' herb of the field,
In the fweat of thy face fhalt thou eat bread,
Till thou return unto the ground; for thon
Out of the ground waft taken, know thy birth,
For duft thou art, and fhalt to duft return.



So judg'd he man, both Judge and Saviour fent, And th' inftant ftroke of death denounc'd that day 210 Remov'd far off; then pitying how they flood Before him naked to the air, that now Muft fuffer change, difdain'd not to begin Thenceforth the form of fervant to affume: As when he wath'd his fervants feet, fo now, As father of his family, he clad Their nakedness with skins of beafts, or flain, Or as the fnake with youthful coat repaid; And thought not much to clothe his enemies : Nor he their outward only with the skins Of beafts, but inward nakedness, much more Opprobrious, with his robe of righteousness, Arraying cover'd from his Father's fight. To him with fwift afcent he up return'd, Into his blifsful bofom reaffum'd

In glory as of old; to him appeas'd,

All, tho' all knowing, what had pafs'd with man
Recounted, mixing interceffion fweet.




Meanwhile, ere thus was finn'd and judg'd on earth, Within the gates of hell fat Sin and Death, In counterview within the gates, that now Stood open wide, belching outrageous flame Far into Chaos, fince the fiend pass'd through, Sin opening, who thus now to Death began.

O fon, why fit we here each other viewing
Idly, while Satan, our great author, thrives
In other worlds, and happier feat provides
For us his offspring dear? It cannot be
But that fucceis attends him; if mishap,
Ere this he had return'd, with fury driv'n
By his avengers: fince no place like this
Can fit his punishment, or their revenge.
Methinks 1 feel new ftrength within me rife,
Wings growing, and dominion given me large
Beyond this deep; whatever draws me on,
Or fympathy, or fome connat'ral force,
Powerful at greatest distance to unite,
With fecret amity, things of like kind,
By fecreteft conveyance. Thou, my shade
Infeparable, muft with me along:





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Where Satan now prevails; a monument
Of merit high to all th' infernal host,
Eafing their paffage hence, for intercourse,
Or tranfmigration, as their lot shall lead.
Nor can I mifs the way, fo ftrongly drawn
By this new-felt attraction and instinct.

Whom thus the meagre shadow anfwer'd foon.

Go whether fate and inclination strong

Leads thee; I fhall not lag behind, nor err
The way, thou leading; fuch a scent I draw
Of carnage, prey innumerable, and tafte



The favour of death from all things there that live:


Nor fhall I to the work thou enterprisest


Be wanting, but afford thee equal aid.

So faying, with delight he fuuff'd the smell

Of mortal change on earth.

As when a flock

Of ravenous fowl, tho' many a league remote,

Against the day of battle, to a field,


Where armies lie incamp'd, come flying, lur'd
With feent of living carcafes defign'd

For death, the following day, in bloody fight:
So fcented the grim feature, and upturn'd
His noftril wide into the murky air,


Sagacious of his quarry from fo far.

Then both from out hell-gates into the wafte
Wide anarchy of Chaos, damp and dark,

Flew diverfe; and with pow'r (their pow'r was great)
Hov'ring upon the waters, what they met


Solid or flimy, as in raging fea

Toft up and down, together crouded drove,

As when two polar winds, blowing adverfe

Upon the Cronian fea, together drive

From each fide fhoaling tow'ards the mouth of hell:



Mountains of ice, that top th' imagin'd way
Beyond Petfora eaftward, to the rich
Cathanian coaft. The aggregated foil
Death with his mace petrific, cold and dry,
As with a trident smote, and fix'd as firm
As Delos floating once; the reft his look
Bound with Gorgonian rigour not to move;
And with Afphaltic flime, broad as the gate,
Deep to the roots of hell the gather'd beach
They faften'd, and the mole immenfe wrought on, 300
Over the foaming deep high-arch'd, a bridge
Of length prodigious, joining to the wall
Immoveable of this new fenceless world
Forfeit to death; from hence a paffage broad,



Smooth, eafy, inoffenfive, down to hell.

So, if great things to finall may be compar'd,
Xerxes, the liberty of Greece to yoke,
From Sufa his Memnonian palace high
Came to the fea, and over Hellefpont

Bridging his way. Europe with Asia join'd,


And feourg'd with many a stroke th' indignant waves. Now had they brought the work by wond'rous art Pontifical, a ridge of pendent rock,


Over the vex'd abyfs, following the track
Of Satan, to the felf-fame place where he
First lighted from his wing, and landed fafe
From out of Chaos, to the outfide bare
Of this round world: with pins of adamant,
And chains, they made all faft; too faft they made,
And durable; and now in little space

The confines met of empyréan heaven,

And of this world, and on the left hand hell


With long reach interpos'd; three feveral ways
In fight, to each of thefe three places led.
And now their way to earth they had defcry'd, 325
To Paradise first tending, when behold

Satan, in likeness of an angel bright,

Betwixt the Centaur and the Scorpion fteering

His zenith, while the Sun in Aries rofe:
Difguis'd he came; but those his children dear 330
Their parent foon difcern'd, though in difguife.
He, after Eve feduc'd, unminded flunk
Into the wood faft by, and changing shape
To' obferve the fequel, faw his guileful act
By Eve, though all unweeting, feconded
Upon her husband, faw their fhame that fought
Vain covertures; but when he faw defcend
The Son of God to judge them, terrify'd
He fled, not hoping to efcape, but shun





The prefent, fearing guilty what his wrath
Might fuddenly inflict; that pafs'd, return'd
By night, and lift'ning where the hapless pair
Sat in their fad difcourfe, and various plaint,
Thence gather'd his own doom; which understood
Not inftant, but of future time, with joy
And tidings fraught, to hell he now return'd;
And at the brink of Chaos, near the foot
Of this new wond'rous pontifice, anhop'd
Met, who to meet him came, his offspring dear.
Great joy was at their meeting, and at fight
Of that ftupendous bridge his joy increas'd.
Long he admiring ftood, till Sin, his fair
Enchanting daughter, thus the filence broke.

O parent, these are thy magnific deeds,


Thy trophies, which thou view'ft as not thine own;
Thou art their author and prime architect :
For I no fooner in my heart divin'd,

My heart, which by a fecret harmony


Still moves with thine, join'd in connection fweet,

That thou on earth hadßt profper'd, which thy looks

Now alfo evidence, but ftrait I felt


Tho' diftant from thee worlds between, yet felt

That I muft after thee with this thy fon,.

Such fatal confequence unites us three:

Hell could no longer hold us in her bounds,


Nor this unvoyageable gulf obfcure

Detain from following thy illuftrious track.
Thou hast achiev'd our liberty, confin'd
Within hell-gates till now; thop us impower'd
To fortify thus far, and overlay


With this portentous bridge the dark abyss.
Thine now is all this world; thy virtue hath won
What thy hands builded not, thy wisdom gain'd
With odds what war hath loft, and fully' aveng'd


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