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And Cufco in Peru, the richer feat
Of Atabalipa, and yet unfpoil'd
Guiana, whofe great city Geryon's fons
Call El Dorado: But to nobler fights
Michael from Adam's eyes the film remov❜d,
Which that falfe fruit that promis'd clearer fight
Had bred; then purg'd with euphrafy and rue
The visual nerve, for he had much to fee;
And from the well of life three drops inftill'd.
So deep the power of thefe ingredients pierc'd,
Even to the inmoft feat of mental fight,
That Adam, now inforc'd to close his eyes,
Sunk down, and all his fpi'rits become intranc'd; 420 But him the gentle angel by the hand
Soon rais'd, and his attention thus recall'd.
Adam, now ope thine eyes, and first behold Th' effects which thy original crime hath wrought In fome to fpring from thee, who never touch'd 425 Th' excepted tree, nor with the fnake confpir'd, Nor finn'd thy fin, yet from that fin derive Corruption to bring forth more violent deeds. His eyes he open'd, and beheld a field,
Part arable and tilth, whereon were fheaves
New reap'd, the other part fheep-walks and folds;
I' th' midit an altar as a land-mark ftood,
Ruftic, of graffy ford; thither anon
A sweaty reaper from his tillage brought
First fruits, the green ear and the yellow fheaf, 435
Uncull'd, as came to hand; a fhepherd next,
More meek, came with the firftlings of his flock
Choiceft and beft; then facrificing, laid
The inwards and their fat, with incenfe ftrow'd,
On the cleft wood, and all due rites perform'd. 440
His offering foon propitious fire from heaven
Confum'd with nimble glance and grateful Beam;
The other's not, for his was not fincere:
Whereat he inly rag'd, and as they talk'd,
Smote him into the midriff with a stone
That beat out life; he fell, and deadly pale
Groan'd out his foul with guthing blood effus’d.
Much at that fight was Adam in his heart
Difmay'd, and thus in hafte to th' angel cry'd.
O teacher, fome great mischief hath befall'n 450* To that meck man, who well had sacrific'd; Is piety thus and pure devotion paid?
T'whom Michael thus, he alfo mov'd, reply'd. These two are brethren, Adam, and to come Out of thy loins; th' unjust the juft hath flain, 455 For envy that his brother's offering found From heav'n acceptance; but the bloody fact Will be aveng'd; and th' other's faith approv'd Lofe no reward, tho' here thou fee him die, Rolling in duft and gore. To which our fire. Alas, both for the deed and for the caufe! But have I now feen death? Is this the way I must return to native duft? O fight Of terror, foul and ugly to behold, Horrid to think, how horrible to feel!
To whom thus Michaël. Death thou haft feen
In his firft fhape on man; but many shapes
Of Death, and many are the ways that lead
To his grim cave, all difmal; yet to fenfe
More terrible at th' entrance than within.
Some, as thou faw'ft, by violent ftroke fhall die,
By fire, flood, famine; by intemp'rance more
In meats and drinks, which on the earth fhall bring
Difeafes dire, of which a monftrous crew
Before thee fhall appear; that thou mayst know 475
What mifery th' inabftinence of Eve
Shall bring on men. Immediately a place
Before his eyes appear'd, fad, noisome, dark,
A lazar-house it seem'd, wherein were laid
Numbers of all difeas'd, all maladies
Of ghastly spasm, or racking torture, qualms
Of heart-fick agony, all fev'rous kinds,
Convulfions, epilepfies, fierce catarrhs,
Intestine ftone and ulcer, colic pangs,
Demoniac phrenzy, moaping melancholy,
And moon. ftruck madnefs, pining atrophy,
Marasmus, and wide-wafting peftilence,
Dropfies, and afthmas, and joint-racking rheums.
Dire was the toffing, deep the groans; Despair
Tended the fick, bufieft from couch to couch; 490;
And over them triumphant Death his dart
Shook, but delay'd to ftrike, tho' oft invok'd
With vows, as their chief good, and final hope.
Sight fo deform what heart of rock could long
Dry-ey'd behold? Adam could not, but wept, 495
Though not of woman born; compaffion quell'd
His best of man, and gave him up to tears
A space, till firmer thoughts restrain'd excefs;
And scarce recovering words his plaint renew'd.
O miferable mankind, to what fall
Degraded, to what wretched ftate referv'd!
Better end here. unborn. Why is life given
To be thus wrefted from us? rather why,
Obtruded on us thus who, if we knew
What we receive, would either not accept
Life offer'd, or foon beg to lay it down,
Glad to be fo difmifs'd in peace. Can thus
Th' image of God in man, created once
So goodly and erect, though faulty fince,-
To fuch unfightly fufferings be debas'd
Under inhuman pains? Why should not man,
Retaining ftill divine fimilitude.
In part, from fuch deformities be free,
And for his Maker's image-fake exempt?
Their Maker's image, anfwer'd Michael, then 515 Forfook them, when themfelves they vilify'd To ferve ungovern'd appetite, and took His image whom they ferv'd, a brutish vice, Inductive mainly to the fin of Eve. Therefore fo abject is their punishment, Disfiguring not God's likeness, but their own, Or if his likeness, by themselves defac'd, While they pervert pure nature's healthful rules To loathfome ficknefs; worthily, fince they God's image did not reverence in themselves. I yield it juft, faid Adam, and fubmit. But is there yet no other way, befides Thefe painful paffages, how we may come To death, and mix with our connatural dust ? There is, faid Michael, if thou well obferve 530 The rule of not too much, by temp'rance taught, In what thou eat'st and drink'st, seeking from thence Due nourishment, not gluttonous delight,
Till many years over thy head return:
So may'ft thou live, till like ripe fruit thou drop 535 Into thy mother's lap, or be with ease
Gather'd, not harfhly pluck'd, for Death mature: This is old age; but then thou must outlive
Thy youth, thy ftrength, thy beauty, which will change
To wither'd, weak, and gray; thy fenfes then
Obtufe, all taste of pleasure muft forego,
To what thou haft; and for the air of youth,
Hopeful and cheerful, in thy blood will reign.
A melancholy damp of cold and dry
To weigh thy fpirits down, and laft confume
The balm of life. To whom our ancestor.
Henceforth I fly not Death, nor would prolong
Life much; bent rather how I may be quit
Fairest and eafieft of this cumbrous charge;
Which I must keep till my appointed day.
Of rend'ring up, and patiently attend
My diffolution. Michaël reply'd.
Nor love thy life, nor hate; but what thou liv'st, Live well; how long or short, permit to heav'n: And now prepare thee for another fight.
He look'd, and faw a fpacious plain, whereon
Were tents of various hue; by fome were herds
Of cattle grazing; others, whence the found
Of inftruments that made melodious chime
Was heard, of harp and organ; and who mov'd 560
Their ftops and chords was feen; his volant touch
Instinct through all proportions, low and high,
Fled and purfu'd tranfverfe the refonant fugue.
In other part ftood one who at the forge
Lab'ring, two maffy clods of iron and brass
Had melted, (whether found where cafual fire
Had wafted woods on mountain or in vale,
Down to the veins of earth, thence gliding hot
To fome cave's mouth, or whether wash'd by stream
From under ground), the liquid ore he drain'd 570
Into fit moulds prepar'd; from which he form'd
First his own tools; then what might elfe be wrought
Fufil or graven in metal. After thefe,
But on the hither fide, a different fort
From the high neighb'ring hills, which was their feat,
Down to the plain defcended: by their guife
Just men they feem'd, and all their study bent
To worship God aright, and know his works
Not hid, nor thofe things laft which might preferve
Freedom and peace to men: they on the plain 580
Long had not walk'd, when from the tents behold.
A bevy of fair women, richly gay