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And banish'd fiom man's life his happiest life,
Simplicity and spotless innocence!
So pass'd they naked on, or shunn’d the sight
Of God or Angel; for they thought no ill:

322 So hand in hand they pass'd, the lovliest pair, That ever since in love's embraces met; Adam the goodliest man of men since born liis sons, the fairest of her daughters Eve. Under a tuft of shade that on a green

325 Stood whispering soft, by a fresh fountain side They sat them down ; and, after no more toil Of their sweet gardening labour than sufficed To recommend cool Zephyr, and made ease More easy, wholesome thirst and appetite 330 More grateful, to their supper fruits they fell ; Nectarine fruits which the compliant boughs Yielded them, sidelong as they sat recline On the soft dcévny bank damask'd with flowers. The savoury pulp they chew, and in the rind, 335 Still as they thirsted, scoop the brimming stream; Nor gentle purpose, nor endearing smiles Wanted, nor youthful dalliance, as beseems Fair couple, link'd in happy nuptial league, Alone as they. About them frisking play'd 340 All beasts of the earth, since wild, and of all chase In wood or wilderness, forest or den; Sporting the lion ramp'd, and in his paw, Dandled the kid; bears, tigers, ounces, pards, Gambol'd before them; the unwieldy elephant. 315 To make them mirth, used all his might, and wroath'd His lithe proboscis; close the serpent sly, Insinuating, wove with Gordian twine His braided train, and of his fatal guile Gave proof unheeded; others on the grass 356 Couch'd, and now filld with pasture gazing sat, Or bedward ruminating ; for the sun, Declined, was hasting now with prone career To the ocean isles, and in the ascending scale

Of Heaven the stars that usher evening rose • 355
When Satan still in gaze, as first he stood,
Scarce thus at length fail'd speech recover'd sad :

O Hell! what do mine eyes with grief behold!
Into our room of bliss thus high advanced
Creatures of other mould, earth-born perhaps,

366 Not Spirits, yet to heavenly Spirits bright Little inferior: whom my thoughts pursue With wonder, and could love, so lively shines in them divine reseinblance, and such grace The hand that form’d them on their shape hath pour'd. Ah' gentle pair, ye little think how nigh 360 Your change approaches, when all these delights Will vanish, and deliver ye to woe ; More woe, the more you tas.d is now of joy; Happy, but for so happy ill secured

370 Long to continue, and this high seat your Heaven Ill fenced for Heaven to keep out such a foe As now is enter'd; yet no purposed foe To you, whom I could pity thus forlorn, Though I unpitied : League with you I seek, 375 And mutual amity, so straight, so close, That I with you must dwell, or you with me Henceforth : my dwelling haply may not please, Like this fair Paradise, your sense ; yet such Accept your Maker's work; he

380 Which I as freely give : Hell shall unfold, To entertain you two, her widest gates, And send forth all her kings; there will be room, Not like these narrow limits, to conceive Your numercus offspring ; if no better place, 385 Thank him who puts me loath to this revenge On you who wrong me not for him who wrong'd. And should I at your harmless innocence Melt, as I do, yet public reason just, Honour and empire with revenge enlarged, 396 By conquering this new world, compel me now l'o do what else, though damnd, I shonld ablox

gave

it me,

So spake the Fiond, and with necessity,
The tyrant'a plea, excused his devilish deeds.
Then from his lofty stand on that high tree 395
Down he alighis among the sportful herd
Of those four-footed kinds, hirself now one,
Now other, as their shape served best his end
Nearer to view his prey, and, unespied,
To mark what of their state he more might learn, 400
By word or action mark'd: About them round
A lion now he stalks with fiery g'are;
Then as a tiger, who by chance hath spied
In some purlieu two gentle fawns at play,
Straight couches close, then, rising, changes oft 405
His couchant watch, as one chose his ground,
Whence rushing, he might swest-seize them botin,
Griped in each paw : when Adam, first of men,
To first of women, Eve, thus moving speech,
Turn'd him, all ear to hear new utterance flow : 410

Sole partner and sole part of all these joys,
Dearer thyself than all; needs must the Power
That made us, and for us this ample world,
Be infinitely good, and of his good
As liberal and free as infinite;

415
That raised us from the dust, and placed us here
In all this happiness, who at his hand
Have nothing mcrited, nor can perform
Aught whereof he hath need; he who requires
From us no other service than to keep

420 This one, this easy charge, of all the trees In Paradise that bear delicious fruit &o various, not to taste that only tree Of knowledge, planted by the tree of life. Su near grows death to life, whate'er death is, Some dieadful thing nɔ doubt ; for well thou know'st God hath pronounced it death to taste that tree, The orily sign of our obedience left, Ainong so muy signs of power and rulo Corderr'd upon us, and dominion given

430

Over all other creatures that possess
Earth, air, and sea. Then let us not think hard
One easy prohibition, who enjoy
Free leave so large to all things else, and choice
Unlimited of manifold delights:

435
But let us ever praise him, and extol
His bounty, following our delightful task,
To

prune these growing plants and tend these flowers, Which were it toilsome, yet with thee were sweet.

To whom thus Eve replied: 0 thou for whom 440 And from whom I was form’d, flesh of thy flesh, And without whom am to no end, my guide And head! what thou hast said is just and right For we to him indeed all praises owe And daily thanks; I chiefly, who enjoy

445 So for the happier lot, enjoying thee Pre-eminent by so much odds, while thou Like consort to thyself canst no where find. That day I oft remember, when from sleep I first awaked, and found myself reposed

450 Under a shade on flowers, much wondering where And what I was, whence thither brought and how. Not distant far from thence a murmuring sound Of waters issued from a cave, and spread Into a liquid plain, then stood unmoved

455 Pure as the expanse of Heaven; I thither went With unexperienced thought, and laid me down On the green bank, to look into the clear Smooth lake, that to me seem'd another sky. As I bent down to look, just opposite

460 A shape within the watery gleam appear'd, Bending to look on me. I started back; It started back : but pleased I soon return'd ; Pleased it return'd as soon with answering luoks Of sympathy and love : There I had fix'd 461 Mine eyes till now, and pined with vain desire, Had not a voice thus warn'd me; “What thou scost, Wbut there thou seest, fair Creature, is thyself;

With thee it came and goes : but follow me,
And I will bring thee where no shadow stays
Thy coming, and thy soft embraces, he
Whose image thou art; him thou shalt enjoy
Inseparably thine, to him shalt bear
Multitudes like thyself, and thence be callid
Mother of human race." What could I do, 470
But follow straight, invisibly thus led ?
Till I espied thee, fair indeed and tall, .
Under a platane ; yet methought less fair
Less winning soft, less amiably mild,
Than that smooth watery image : back I turn'd; 480
Thou following criedst aloud, “ Return, fair Eve;
Whom fliest thou ? whom thou fliest, of him thou art,
His flesh, his bone; to give thee being I lent
Out of my side to thee, nearest my heart,
Substantial life, to have thee by my side

485
Henceforth an individual solace dear ;
Part of my soul I seek thee, and thee claim
My other half :" With that thy gentle hand
Seized mine : I yielded ; and from that time seo
How beauty is excell'd by manly grace,

490 And wisdom, which alone is truly fair.

So spake our general mother, and with eyes Of conjugal attraction unreproved, And meek surrender, half embracing lean'd On our first father; half her swelling brçast 495 Naked met his, undei the flowing gold Of her locse tresses hid: he in delight, Both of her beauty and submissive charms, Suiled with superior love, as Jupiter Du Juno smiles, when he impregns the clouds 500 T'hat shed May flowers; and press'd her malson lip With kisses pure : Aside the Devil turn'd For envy ; yet with jealous leer malign Eyed them askance, and to himself thus plain'd:

Sight hateful, sight tormenting ! thus these two, Imparadised in one another's arms,

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