Obrazy na stronie

When on both sides they saw the roaring main
Broke loose from his invisible chain
They saw the monstrous death and watery war
Come rolling down loud ruin from afar !
In vain some backward and some forwards fly
With helpless haste; in vain they cry
To their coelestial Beasts for aid;
In vain their guilty king they' upbraid;
In vain on Moses he, and Moses' God, does call,
With a repentance true too late;
They're compass'd round with a devouring fate,
That draws, like a strong net, the mighty sea upon
them all.

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“Me verb primūm dulces ante omnia Muse,

“Quarum sacra fero ingenti percussus amore,

“Accipiant, Caelique vias ac Sidera monstrent.”
VIRG. Georg. II.'

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The Proposition—The Invocation—The entrance into the history from a new agreement betwixt Saul and David—A description of hell—The Devil's speech—Envy's reply to him—Her appearing to Saul in the shape of Benjamin—Her speech, and Saul's to himself after she was vanished—A description of heaven— God’s speech : he sends an Angel to David: the Angel's message to him—David sent for, to play before Saul—A Digression concerning musick—David's psalm—Saul attempts to kill him—His escape to his own house, from whence being pursued by the king's guard, by the artifice of his wife Michal he escapes and flies to Naioth, the Prophets’ college at Ramah—Saul's speech, and rage at his escape—A long digression describing the Prophets’ college, and their manner of life there, and the ordinary subjects of their Poetry.—Saul's guards pursue David thither, and prophesy—Saul among the prophets—He is counpared to Balaam, whose song concludes the book.

I SING the man who Judah's sceptre bore
In that right-hand which held the crook before;
Who from best poet, best of kings did grow;
The two chief gifts Heaven could on man bestow.
Much danger first, much toil did he sustain, 5
Whilst Saul and Hell cross'd his strong fate in vain.
Nor did his crown less painful work afford,
Less exercise his patience, or his sword;

So long her conqueror, Fortune's spite pursued;
Till with unwearied virtue he subdued 10
All home-bred malice, and all foreign boasts;
Their strength was Armies, his the Lord of Hosts.
Thou, who didst David's royal stem adorn,
And gav'st him birth from whom thyself wast born;
Who didst in triumph at Death's court appear, 15
And slew'st him with thy nails, thy cross, and spear,
Whilst Hell's black tyrant trembled to behold
The glorious light he forfeited of old;
Who, heaven's glad burthen now, and justest pride,
Sitt'st high enthron'd next thy great Father's side 20
(Where hallow'd flames help to adorn that head
Which once the blushing thorns environed,
Till crimson drops of precious blood hung down
Like rubies to enrich thine humble crown),
Ev’n thou my breast with such blest rage inspire, 25
As mov'd the tuneful strings of David's lyre; -
Guide my bold steps with thine own travelling
flame, -
In these untrodden paths to sacred fame!
Lo, with pure hands thy heavenly fire to take,
My well-chang'd Muse I a chaste Vestal make! 30
From Earth's vain joys, and Love's soft witchcraft,
I consecrate my Magdalene to thee!
Lo, this great work, a temple to thy praise,
On polish'd pillars of strong verse I raise!
A temple, where if thou vouchsafe to dwell, 35
It Solomon's and Herod's shall excek.

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