Obrazy na stronie
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Of planets, and of fix'd, in all her wheels
Resembles nearest, mazes intricate,
Eccentric, intervolv'd, yet regular
Then most, when most irregular they seem;
And in their motions Harmony divine
So smooths her charming tones, that God's own ear
Listens delighted. Evening now approach'd,
(For we have also our evening and our morn,
We ours for change delectable, not need ;)
Forthwith from dance to sweet repast they turn
Desirous; all in circles as they stood,
Tables are set, and on a sudden pil'd
With angel's food, and rubied nectar flows
In pearl, in diamond, and massy gold,

Fruit of delicious vines, the growth of Heaven.
On flowers repos'd and with fresh flowerets crown'd,
They eat, they drink, and in communion sweet
Quaff immortality and joy, secure

Of surfeit, where full measure only bounds
Excess, before the all-bounteous King, who shower'd
With copious hand, rejoicing in their joy.
Now when ambrosial night with clouds exhal'd
From that high mount of God, whence light and shade
Spring both, the face of brightest Heaven had
chang'd

Thy eyelids and remember'st what decree
Of yesterday, so late hath pass'd the lips
Of Heaven's Almighty. Thou to me thy thoughts
Wast wont, I mine to thee was wont to impart ;
Both waking we were one: how then can now
Thy sleep dissent? New laws thou see'st impos'd;
New laws from him who reigns, new minds may raise
In us who serve, new counsels, to debate
What doubtful may ensue: more in this place
To utter is not safe. Assemble thou
Of all those myriads which we lead the chief;
Tell them, that by command, ere yet dim night
Her shadowy cloud withdraws, I am to haste,
And all who under me their banners wave,
Homeward, with flying march, where we possess

The quarters of the north; there to prepare
Fit entertainment to receive our King,
The great Messiah, and his new commands,
Who speedily through all the hierarchies
Intends to pass triumphant, and give laws.'

"So spake the false archangel, and infus'd
Bad influence into the unwary breast
Of his associate: he together calls,

Or several one by one, the regent powers,
Under him regent; tells, as he was taught,
That the Most High commanding, now ere night,
Now ere dim night had disencumber'd Heaven,
The great hierarchal standard was to move;
Tells the suggested cause, and casts between
Ambiguous words and jealousies, to sound
Or taint integrity: but all obey'd
The wonted signal, and superior voice
Of their great potentate; for great indeed
His name, and high was his decree in Heaven;
His countenance, as the morning-star that guides
The starry flock, allur'd them, and with lies
Drew after him the third part of Heaven's host.
Meanwhile the Eternal Eye, whose sight discerns
Abstrusest thoughts, from forth his holy mount,
And from within the golden lamps that burn
Nightly before him, saw without their light
Rebellion rising, saw in whom, how spread
Among the sons of morn, what multitudes
Were banded to oppose his high decree;
And, smiling, to his only Son thus said.

To grateful twilight, (for night comes not there
In darker veil,) and roseate dews dispos'd
All but the unsleeping eyes of God to rest;
Wide over all the plain, and wider far
Than all this globous Earth in plain outspread,
(Such are the courts of God,) the angelic throng
Dispers'd in bands and files, their camp extend
By living streams among the trees of life,
Pavilions numberless, and sudden rear'd,
Celestial tabernacles, where they slept [course
Fann'd with cool winds; save those, who, in their
Melodious hymns about the sovran throne
Alternate all night long: but not so wak'd
Satan; so call him now, his former name
Is heard no more in Heaven; he of the first,
If not the first archangel, great in power,
In favor and pre-eminence, yet fraught
With envy against the Son of God, that day
Honor'd by his great Father, and proclaim'd
Messiah King anointed, could not bear
Through pride that sight, and thought himself impair'd.
Deep malice thence conceiving and disdain,
Soon as midnight brought on the dusky hour
Friendliest to sleep and silence, he resolv'd
With all his legions to dislodge, and leave
Unworshipt, unobey'd, the throne supreme,
Contemptuous; and his next subordinate
Awakening, thus to him in secret spake :

Made answer. Mighty Father, thou thy foes
Justly hast in derision, and, secure,

Laugh'st at their vain designs and tumults vain,
Matter to me of glory, whom their hate
Illustrates, when they see all regal power
Given me to quell their pride, and in event
Know whether I be dextrous to subdue

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'Sleep'st thou, companion dear? What sleep can Thy rebels, or be found the worst in Heaven." close

"So spake the Son; but Satan, with his powers, Far was advanc'd on winged speed; an host Innumerable as the stars of night,

"Son, thou in whom my glory I behold
In full resplendence, heir of all my might,
Nearly it now concerns us to be sure

Of our omnipotence, and with what arms
We mean to hold what anciently we claim
Of deity or empire: such a foe

Is rising, who intends to erect his throne
Equal to ours, throughout the spacious north:
Nor so content, hath in his thought to try
In battle, what our power is, or our right.
Let us advise, and to this hazard draw
With speed what force is left, and all employ
In our defence; lest unawares we lose

This our high place, our sanctuary, our hill.'

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"To whom the Son with calm aspéct and clear Lightening divine, ineffable, serene,

Or stars of morning, dew-drops, which the Sun
Impearls on every leaf and every flower.
Regions they pass'd, the mighty regencies
Of seraphim, and potentates, and thrones,
In their triple degrees; regions to which
All thy dominion, Adam, is no more
Than what this garden is to all the earth,
And all the sea, from one entire globose
Stretch'd into longitude; which having pass'd,
At length into the limits of the north
They came; and Satan to his royal seat
High on a hill, far blazing, as a mount
Rais'd on a mount, with pyramids and towers

That equal over equals monarch reign:

Thyself, though great and glorious, dost thou count,
Or all angelic nature join'd in one,

From diamond quarries hewn, and rocks of gold; How provident he is; how far from thought
The palace of great Lucifer, (so call
To make us less, bent rather to exalt
That structure in the dialect of men
Our happy state, under one head more near
Interpreted,) which not long after, he,
United. But to grant it thee unjust,
Affecting all equality with God,
In imitation of that mount whereon
Messiah was declar'd in sight of Heaven,
The Mountain of the Congregation call'd;
For thither he assembled all his train,
Pretending, so commanded, to consult
About the great reception of their king,
Thither to come, and with calumnious art
Of counterfeited truth thus held their ears:
"Thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues,

Equal to him begotten son? by whom,
As by his word, the Mighty Father made
All things, even thee; and all the spirits of Heaven
By him created in their bright degrees,
Crown'd them with glory, and to their glory nam'd
Thrones, dominations, princedoms, virtues, powers,
Essential powers; nor by his reign obscur'd,
But more illustrious made; since he the head
One of our number thus reduc'd becomes;
His laws our laws; all honor to him done
Returns our own. Cease then this impious rage
And tempt not these; but hasten to appease
The incensed Father, and the incensed Son,
While pardon may be found in time besought.'

"So spake the fervent angel; but his zeal
None seconded, as out of season judg'd,
Or singular and rash: whereat rejoic'd
The apostate, and, more haughty, thus replied.
That we were form'd then, say'st thou? and the
work

powers;
If these magnific titles yet remain
Not merely titular, since by decree
Another now hath to himself engross'd
All power, and us eclips'd under the name
Of King anointed, for whom all this haste
Of midnight-march, and hurried meeting here,
This only to consult how we may best,
With what may be devis'd of honors now,
Receive him coming to receive from us
Knee-tribute yet unpaid, prostration vile!
Too much to one! but double how endur'd,
To one, and to his image now proclaim'd?
But what if better counsels might erect
Our minds, and teach us to cast off this yoke?
Will ye submit your necks, and choose to bend
The supple knee? Ye will not, if I trust
To know ye right, or if ye know yourselves
Natives and sons of Heaven possess'd before
By none; and if not equal all, yet free,
Equally free; for orders and degrees
Jar not with liberty, but well consist.
Who can in reason then, or right, assume
Monarchy over such as live by right
His equals, if in power and splendor less,
In freedom equal? or can introduce
Law and edict on us, who without law
Err not? much less for this to be our lord,
And look for adoration, to the abuse
Of those imperial titles, which assert
Our being ordain'd to govern, not to serve.'

"Thus far his bold discourse without control
Had audience: when among the seraphim
Abdiel, than whom none with more zeal ador'd
The Deity, and divine commands obey'd,
Stood up, and in a flame of zeal severe
The current of his fury thus oppos'd.

"O argument blasphemous, false and proud!
Words which no ear ever to hear in Heaven
Expected, least of all from thee, ingrate,
In place thyself so high above thy peers.
Canst thou with impious obloquy condemn
The just decree of God, pronounc'd and sworn,
That to his only Son, by right endued
With regal sceptre, every soul in Heaven
Shall bend the knee, and in that honor due
Confess him rightful king? unjust, thou say'st,
Flatly unjust, to bind with laws the free,
And equal over equals to let reign,
One over all with unsucceeded power.

Shalt thou give law to God? shalt thou dispute
With him the points of liberty, who made [Heaven
Thee what thou art, and form'd the powers of
Such as he pleas'd, and circumscrib'd their being?
Yet, by experience taught, we know how good,
And of our good and of our dignity

Of secondary hands, by task transferr'd

From Father to his Son? strange point and new! Doctrine which we would know whence learn'd: who saw

When this creation was? remember'st thou
Thy making, while the Maker gave thee being?
We know no time when we were not as now;
Know none before us, self-begot, self-rais'd
By our own quickening power, when fatal course
Had circled his full orb, the birth mature
Of this our native Heaven, ethereal sons.
Our puissance is our own: our own right hand
Shall teach us highest deeds, by proof to try
Who is our equal: then thou shalt behold
Whether by supplication we intend
Address, and to begirt the almighty throne
Beseeching or besieging. This report,
These tidings carry to the anointed King;
And fly, ere evil intercept thy flight.'

"He said; and, as the sound of waters deep,
Hoarse murmur echo'd to his words applause
Through the infinite host: nor less for that
The flaming seraph fearless, though alone
Encompass'd round with foes, thus answer'd bold
"O alienate from God, O spirit accurs'd,
Forsaken of all good! I see thy fall
Determin'd, and thy hapless crew involv'd
In this perfidious fraud, contagion spread
Both of thy crime and punishment; henceforth
No more be troubled how to quit the yoke
Of God's Messiah; those indulgent laws
Will not be now vouchsaf'd; other decrees
Against thee are gone forth without recall:
That golden sceptre, which thou didst reject,
Is now an iron rod to bruise and break
Thy disobedience. Well thou didst advise;
Yet not for thy advice or threats I fly
These wicked tents devoted, lest the wrath
Impendent, raging into sudden flame,
Distinguish not: for soon expect to feel
His thunder on thy head, devouring fire.
Then who created thee lamenting learn,
When who can uncreate thee thou shalt know.

"So spake the seraph Abdiel, faithful found
Among the faithless, faithful only he;
Among innumerable false, unmov'd,
Unshaken, unseduc'd, unterrified,
His loyalty he kept, his love, his zeal;
Nor number, nor example, with him wrought
To swerve from truth, or change his constant mind,
Though single. From amidst them forth he pass'd,
Long way through hostile scorn, which he sustain'd
Superior, nor of violence feared aught;
And, with retorted scorn, his back he turn'd
On those proud towers to swift destruction doom'd."

"ALL night the dreadless angel, unpursued, Through Heaven's wide champain held his way;

till Morn,

Wak'd by the circling Hours, with rosy hand
Unbarr'd the gates of Light. There is a cave
Within the mount of God, fast by his throne,
Where Light and Darkness in perpetual round
Lodge and dislodge by turns, which makes through

BOOK VI.

THE ARGUMENT.

Raphaël continues to relate how Michael and Gabriel were sent forth to battle against Satan and his angels. The first fight described: Satan and his powers retire under night: he calls a council; invents devilish engines, which, in the second day's fight, put Michael and his angels to some disorder; but they at length, pulling up

mountains, overwhelmed both the force and

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machines of Satan : yet, the tumult not so ending,
God, on the third day, sends MESSIAH his Son,
for whom he had reserved the glory of that vic- To darken all the hill, and smoke to roll
So spake the Sovran Voice, and clouds began
tory: he, in the power of his Father, coming to In dusky wreaths, reluctant flames, the sign
the place, and causing all his legions to stand Of wrath awak'd; nor with less dread the loud

still on either side, with his chariot and thunder
driving into the midst of his enemies, pursues At which command the powers militant
Ethereal trumpet from on high 'gan blow:
them, unable to resist, towards the wall of

Heaven; which opening, they leap down, with That stood for Heaven, in mighty quadrate join'd
horror and confusion, into the place of punish-In silence their bright legions, to the sound
Of union irresistible, mov'd on
ment prepared for them in the deep: MESSIAH
returns with triumph to his Father.

Of instrumental harmony, that breath'd
Heroic ardor to adventurous deeds
Under their godlike leaders, in the cause
Of God and his Messiah. On they move,
Indissolubly firm; nor obvious hill,

Heaven
Grateful vicissitude, like day and night;
Light issues forth, and at the other door
Obsequious Darkness enters, till her hour
To veil the Heaven, though darkness there might
well

Seem twilight here: and now went forth the Morn,
Such as in highest Heaven, array'd in gold
Empyreal; from before her vanish'd Night,
Shot through with orient beams; when all the plain,
Cover'd with thick embattled squadrons bright,
Chariots, and flaming arms, and fiery steeds,
Reflecting blaze on blaze, first met his view:
War he perceiv'd, war in procinct; and found
Already known what he for news had thought
To have reported: gladly then he mix'd
Among those friendly powers, who him receiv'd
With joy and acclamations loud, that one,
That of so many myriads fall'n yet one,
Return'd not lost. On to the sacred hill
They led him high applauded, and present
Before the seat supreme; from whence a voice,
From midst a golden cloud, thus mild was heard.
"Servant of God, well done; well hast thou

fought

The better fight, who single hast maintain'd
Against revolted multitudes the cause
Of truth, in word mightier than they in arms;
And for the testimony of truth hast borne
Universal reproach, far worse to bear
Than violence; for this was all thy care
To stand approv'd in sight of God, though worlds
Judg'd thee perverse: the easier conquest now
Remains thee, aided by this host of friends,
Back on thy foes more glorious to return,
Than scorn'd thou didst depart; and to subdue
By force, who reason for their law refuse,
Right reason for their law, and for their king
Messiah, who by right of merit reigns.
Go, Michael, of celestial armies prince,
And thou, in military prowess next,
Gabriel, lead forth to battle these my sons
Invincible; lead forth my armed saints,
By thousands and by millions, rang'd for fight,
Rebellious: them with fire and hostile arms
Equal in number to that godless crew
Fearless assault; and, to the brow of Heaven

Pursuing, drive them out from God and bliss,
Into their place of punishment, the gulf
His fiery Chaos to receive their fall.'
Of Tartarus, which ready opens wide

Nor straitening vale, nor wood, nor stream, divides
Their perfect ranks: for high above the ground
Their march was, and the passive air upbore
Their nimble tread; as when the total kind
Of birds, in orderly array on wing,
Came summoned over Eden to receive
Their names of thee; so over many a tract
Of Heaven they march'd, and many a province wide,
Tenfold the length of this terrene: at last,
Far in the horizon to the north appear'd
From skirt to skirt a fiery region, stretch'd
In battailous aspéct, and nearer view
Bristled with upright beams innumerable
Of rigid spears, and helmets throng'd, and shields
Various, with boastful argument portray'd,
The banded powers of Satan hasting on
With furious expedition; for they ween'd
That self-same day, by fight, or by surprise,
To win the mount of God, and on his throne
To set the Envier of his state, the proud
Aspirer; but their thoughts prov'd fond and vain
In the midway: though strange to us it seem'd
At first, that angel should with angel war,
And in fierce hosting meet, who wont to meet
So oft in festivals of joy and love
Unanimous, as sons of one great Sire,
Hymning the Eternal Father: but the shout
Of battle now began, and rushing sound
Of onset ended soon each milder thought.
High in the midst exalted as a God,

The apostate in his sun-bright chariot sat,
Idol of majesty divine, inclos'd

With flaming cherubim, and golden shields;
Then lighted from his gorgeous throne, for now
"Twixt host and host but narrow space was left,
A dreadful interval, and front to front
Presented stood in terrible array

Of hideous length: before the cloudy van,
On the rough edge of battle ere it join'd,
Satan, with vast and haughty strides advanc'd,
Came towering, arm'd in adamant and gold;
Abdiel that sight endur'd not, where he stood
Among the mightiest, bent on highest deeds,
And thus his own undaunted heart explores.

Such hast thou arm'd, the minstrelsy of Heaven,
Servility with freedom to contend,

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As both their deeds compar'd this day shall prove'
To whom in brief thus Abdiel stern replied.
Apostate! still thou err'st, nor end wilt find
Of erring, from the path of truth remote:
Unjustly thou deprav'st it with the name
Of servitude, to serve whom God ordains,
Or nature: God and nature bid the same,
When he who rules is worthiest, and excels
Them whom he governs. This is servitude,
To serve the unwise, or him who hath rebell'd
Against his worthier, as thine now serve thee,
Thyself not free, but to thyself enthrall'd;

Highest

"O Heaven! that such resemblance of the Yet lewdly dar'st our minist'ring upbraid.
Reign thou in Hell, thy kingdom; let me serve
In Heaven God ever blest, and his divine
Behests obey, worthiest to be obey'd;

Should yet remain, where faith and realty [might
Remain not wherefore should not strength and
There fail where virtue fails, or weakest prove
Where boldest, though to sight unconquerable?
His puissance, trusting in the Almighty's aid,
I mean to try, whose reason I have tried
Unsound and false: nor is it aught but just,
That he, who in debate of truth hath won,
Should win in arms, in both disputes alike
Victor; though brutish that contést and foul,
When reason hath to deal with force, yet so
Most reason is that reason overcome.'

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Yet chains in Hell, not realms, expect: meanwhile
From me return'd, as erst thou saidst, from flight,
This greeting on thy impious crest receive.'

"So saying, a noble stroke he lifted high,
Which hung not, but so swift with tempest fell
On the proud crest of Satan, that no sight,
Nor motion of swift thought, less could his shield,
Such ruin intercept: ten paces huge

He back recoil'd; the tenth on bended knee
His massy spear upstaid; as if on Earth
Winds under ground, or waters forcing way
Sidelong had push'd a mountain from his seat,
Half sunk with all his pines. Amazement seiz'd
The rebel thrones, but greater rage, to see [shout,
Thus foil'd their mightiest; ours joy fill'd, and
Presage of victory, and fierce desire

Of battle: whereat Michaël bid sound

"So pondering, and from his armed peers Forth-stepping opposite, half-way he met His daring foe, at this prevention more Incens'd, and thus securely him defied.

[reach'd

"Proud, art thou met? thy hope was to have
The height of thy aspiring unoppos'd,
The throne of God unguarded, and his side
Abandon'd, at the terror of thy power
Or potent tongue: fool! not to think how vain
Against the Omnipotent to rise in arms;
Who out of smallest things could, without end,
Have rais'd incessant armies to defeat
Thy folly; or with solitary hand
Reaching beyond all limit, at one blow,
Unaided, could have finish'd thee, and whelm'd
Thy legions under darkness: but thou seest
All are not of thy train; there be, who faith
Prefer, and piety to God, though then
To thee not visible, when I alone
Seem'd in thy world erroneous to dissent
From all my sect thou seest; now learn too late
How few sometimes may know, when thousands
err.'
"Whom the grand foe, with scornful eye askance,
Thus answered. 'Ill for thee, but in wish'd hour
Of my revenge, first sought for, thou return'st
From flight, seditious angel! to receive
Thy merited reward, the first assay

Of this right hand provok'd since first that tongue, Army against army numberless to raise
Inspir'd with contradiction, durst oppose
A third part of the gods, in synod met
Their deities to assert; who, while they feel
Vigor divine within them, can allow
Omnipotence to none. But well thou com'st
Before thy fellows, ambitious to win
From me some plume, that thy success may show
Destruction to the rest: this pause between,
(Unanswer'd lest thou boast,) to let thee know,
At first I thought that liberty and Heaven
To heavenly souls had been all one; but now
I see that most through sloth had rather serve,
Minist'ring spirits, train'd up in feast and song!

The archangel trumpet; through the vast of Heaven
It sounded, and the faithful armies rung
Hosanna to the Highest: nor stood at gaze
The adverse legions, nor less hideous join'd
The horrid shock. Now storming fury rose,
And clamor, such as heard in Heaven till now
Was never; arms on armor clashing bray'd
Horrible discord, and the madding wheels
Of brazen chariots rag'd; dire was the noise
Of conflict; over-head the dismal hiss
Of fiery darts in flaming volleys flew,
And flying vaulted either host with fire.
So under fiery cope together rush'd
Both battles main, with ruinous assault
And inextinguishable rage. All Heaven
Resounded; and had Earth been then, all Earth
Had to her centre shook. What wonder? where
Millions of fierce encountering angels fought
On either side, the least of whom could wield
These elements, and arm him with the force
Of all their regions: how much more of power

Dreadful combustion warring, and disturb,
Though not destroy, their happy native seat;
Had not the Eternal King Omnipotent,
From his strong hold of Heaven, high over-rul'd
And limited their might; though number'd such
As each divided legion might have seem'd
A numerous host; in strength each armed hand
A legion; led in fight, yet leader seem'd
Each warrior single as in chief, expert
When to advance, or stand, or turn the sway
Of battle, open when, and when to close
The ridges of grim war: no thought of flight.
None of retreat, no unbecoming deed

That argued fear; each on himself relied,
As only in his arm the moment lay
Of victory: deeds of eternal fame
Were done, but infinite; for wide was spread
That war, and various, sometimes on firm ground
A standing fight, then, soaring on main wing,
Tormented all the air; all air seem'd then
Conflicting fire. Long time in even scale
The battle hung; till Satan, who that day
Prodigious power had shown, and met in arms
No equal, ranging through the dire attack
Of fighting seraphim confus'd, at length
Saw where the sword of Michael smote, and fell'd
Squadrons at once; with huge two-handed sway
Brandish'd aloft, the horrid edge came down
Wide-wasting; such destruction to withstand
He hasted, and oppos'd the rocky orb
Of tenfold adamant, his ample shield,
A vast circumference. At his approach
The great archangel from his warlike toil
Surceas'd, and glad, as hoping here to end
Intestine war in Heaven, the arch-foe subdued
Or captive dragg'd in chains, with hostile frown
And visage all inflam'd first thus began.

"Author of evil, unknown till thy revolt,
Unnam'd in Heaven, now plenteous, as thou seest
These acts of hateful strife, hateful to all,
Though heaviest by just measure on thyself
And thy adherents: how hast thou disturb'd
Heaven's blessed peace, and into nature brought
Misery, uncreated till the crime

Where erst was thickest fight, the angelic throng,
And left large field, unsafe within the wind
Of such commotion; such as, to set forth
Great things by small, if, Nature's concord broke,
Among the constellations war were sprung,
Two planets, rushing from aspéct malign
Of fiercest opposition, in mid sky

Should combat, and their jarring spheres confound.
Together both with next to Almighty arm
Uplifted imminent, one stroke they aim'd
That might determine, and not need repeat,
As not of power at once; nor odds appear'd
In might or swift prevention: but the sword
Of Michael from the armory of God

Was given him temper'd so, that neither keen
Nor solid might resist that edge: it met

The sword of Satan, with steep force to smite
Descending, and in half cut sheer; nor staid,
But with swift wheel reverse, deep entering, shar'd
All his right side: then Satan first knew pain,
And writh'd him to and fro convolv'd; so sore
The griding sword with discontinuous wound
Pass'd through him: but the ethereal substance clos'd,
Not long divisible; and from the gash
A stream of nectarous humor issuing flow'd
Sanguine, such as celestial spirits may bleed,
And all his armor stain'd, erewhile so bright.
Forthwith on all sides to his aid was run
By angels many and strong, who interpos'd
Defence, while others bore him on their shields
Back to his chariot, where it stood retir'd
From off the files of war: there they him laid
Gnashing for anguish, and despite, and shame,
To find himself not matchless, and his pride
Humbled by such rebuke, so far beneath
His confidence to equal God in power.

Yet soon he heal'd; for spirits that live throughout
Vital in every part, not as frail man

Of thy rebellion! how hast thou instill'd
Thy malice into thousands, once upright
And faithful, now proved false! But think not here
To trouble holy rest; Heaven casts thee out
From all her confines. Heaven, the seat of bliss,
Brooks not the works of violence and war.
Hence then, and evil go with thee along,
Thy offspring, to the place of evil, Hell;
Thou and thy wicked crew! there mingle broils,
Ere this avenging sword begin thy doom,
Or some more sudden vengeance, wing'd from God,
Precipitate thee with augmented pain.'

In entrails, heart or head, liver or reins,
Cannot but by annihilating die;
Nor in their liquid texture mortal wound
Receive, no more than can the fluid air:
All heart they live, all head, all eye, all ear,
All intellect, all sense; and, as they please,
They limb themselves, and color, shape, or size
Assume, as likes them best, condense or rare.

"So spake the prince of angels; to whom thus
The adversary. Nor think thou with wind
Of aery threats to awe whom yet with deeds
Thou canst not. Hast thou turn'd the least of these
To flight, or if to fall, but that they rise
Unvanquish'd, easier to transact with me [threats
That thou should'st hope, imperious, and with Of Moloch, furious king; who him defied,

"Meanwhile in other parts like deeds deserv'd Memorial, where the might of Gabriel fought, And with fierce ensigns pierc'd the deep array

To chase me hence? err not, that so shall end
The strife which thou call'st evil, but we style
The strife of glory; which we mean to win,
Or turn this Heaven itself into the Hell
Thou fablest; here however to dwell free,
If not to reign: meanwhile thy utmost force,
And join him nam'd Almighty to thy aid,

And at his chariot wheels to drag him bound
Threaten'd, nor from the Holy One of Heaven
Refrain'd his tongue blasphémous; but anon
Down cloven to the waist, with shatter'd arms
And uncouth pain fled bellowing. On each wing
Uriel and Raphaël, his vaunting foe,

I fly not, but have sought thee far and nigh.

64

They ended parley, and both address'd for fight
Unspeakable; for who, though with the tongue
Of angels, can relate, or to what things
Liken on Earth conspicuous, that may lift
Human imagination to such height

Though huge, and in a rock of diamond arm'd,
Vanquish'd Adramelech, and Asmadai,
Two potent thrones, that to be less than gods
Disdain'd, but meaner thoughts learn'd in their
flight,
[mail.
Mangled with ghastly wounds through plate and
Nor stood unmindful Abdiel to annoy

The atheist crew, but with redoubled blow
Ariel, and Arioch, and the violence

Of godlike power? for likest gods they seem'd,
Stood they or mov'd, in stature, motion, arms,
Fit to decide the empire of great Heaven.
Now wav'd their fiery swords, and in the air
Made horrid circles: two broad suns their shields
Blaz'd opposite, while expectation stood
In horror: from each hand with speed retir'd,

Of Ramiel scorch'd and blasted, overthrew.
I might relate of thousands, and their names
Eternize here on Earth; but those elect
Angels, contented with their fame in Heaven,
Seek not the praise of men: the other sort,

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