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SAMSON. Where outward force constrains, the sentence holds. But who constrains me to the temple of Dagon, 1870 Not dragging ? the Philistian lords command. Commands are no constraints. If I obey them, I do it freely, vent'ring to displease God for the fear of man, and man prefer, Set God behind: which in his jealousy
1375 Shall never, unrepented, find forgiveness. Yet that he may dispense with me or thee Present in temples at idolatrous rites For some important cause, thou need’st not doubt.
1377. Yet that he may dispense of this sort from Elisha, which &c.] Milton here probably had he seemingly grants him. See in view the story of Naaman the 2 Kings v. 18, 19. Thyer. Syrian's begging a dispensation 1384. I with this messenger will that may
Nothing to do, be sure, dishonour
... OFFICER. Samson, this second message from our lords 1 To thee I am bid say. . Art thou our slave, Our captive, at the public mill our drudge, And dar’st thou at our sending and command 1 Dispute thy coming? come without delay; 114; 1395 Or we shall find such engines to assail And hamper thee, as thou shalt come of force, Though thou wert firmlier fasten'd than a rock.
SAMSON. I could be well content to try their art, Which to no few of them would prove pernicious. 1400 Yet knowing their advantages too many, Because they shall not trail me through their streets Like a wild beast, I am content to go. Masters' commands come with a pow'r resistless
With what messen- hardly a sufficient intimation to ger? It was not expressly said a blind man, unless we suppose before that the messenger was
him to know that the messenger coming; it was implied indeed was coming by the same impulse in what the Chorus had said, that he felt rousing him to some
thing extraordinary. How thou wilt here come off sur
1404. Masters' commands &c.] mounts my reach :
This was a feint, but it had beand this might very well be un- trayed itself had it not been coderstood by a man, who could vered by ver. 1408. see the messenger coming as Yet this be sure &c. well as the Chorus, but seems
To such as owe them absolute subjection;
1410. I praise thy resolution :] poral and spiritual, whom he That is, of going, not what he tacitly compares with the lords said last. Richardson.
and priests of Dagon; and then, 1418. -lords are lordliest in 1421. he insinuates that their wine,
holidays also are of heathen inAnd the well-feasted priest &c.] stitution. He had spoken with First he expresses his contempt more complacency of holidays of a Nobility and an opulent in l'Allegro, 97. T. Warton. Clergy, that is, lords both tem
CHORUS. Go, and the Holy One Of Israel be thy guide To what may serve his glory best, and spread his name Great among the heathen round;
1430 Send thee the angel of thy birth, to stand Fast by thy side, who from thy father's field Rode
in flames after his message told Of thy conception, and be now a shield Of fire; that Spirit that first rush'd on thee In the camp of Dan Be efficacious in thee now at need. For never was from heav'n imparted Measure of strength so great to mortal seed, As in thy wondrous actions hath been seen. 1440 But wherefore comes old Manoah in such haste With youthful steps? much livelier than ere while He seems ; supposing here to find his son, Or of him bringing to us some glad news?
MANOAH. Peace with you, brethren? my inducement hither 1445 Was not at present here to find my son, By order of the lords new parted hence To come and play before them at their feast. I heard all as I came, the city rings, And numbers thither flock, I had no will, Lest I should see him forc'd to things unseemly. But that which mov'd my coming now, was chiefly To give ye part with me what hope I have With good success to work his liberty.
generous far and civil, who confess'd!
1470 If some convenient ransom were propos'd.si What noise or shout was that? it tore the sky.
whole inheritance ini,
1463. That part most rever- He might also perhaps in this enc'd Dagon and his priests :] description of Manoah's appliMilton, I doubt not, in this place cation for Samson's deliverance indulges that inveterate spleen, glance at his own case after the which he always had against Restoration. Thyer. public and established religion.