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

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 From diamond quarries hewn, and rocks of gold; The palace of great Lucifer, (so call That structure in the dialect of men Interpreted,) which not long after, he, 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, prinċedoms, virtues, If these magnific titles yet remain [powers; Not merely titular, since by decree Another now hath to himself ingross'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 honours new, 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 splendour 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 controul 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.

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 honour 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

How provident he is; how far from thought
To make us less, bent rather to exalt

Our happy state, under one head more near
United. But to grant it thee unjust,
That equal over equals monarch reign:
Thyself, though great and glorious, dost thou
Or all angelic nature join'd in one, [count,

Equal to him begotten son? by whom,
As by his word, the Mighty Father made [Heaver
All things, even thee; and all the spirits of
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 honour 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
Of secondary hands, by task transferr'd [work
From Father to his Son? strange point and new!
Doctrine which we would know whence learn'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.

VOL. VII.

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

Ce

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 vouchsafd; 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 inte 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 sus-
Superior, nor of violence fear'd aught; [tain'd
And, with retorted scorn, his back he turn'd
On those proud towers totwift destruction doom'd."

PARADISE LOST

BOOK VI.

THE ARGUMENT.

Raphael 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 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 victory: he, in the power of his Father, coming to the place, and causing all his legions to stand still on either side, with his chariot and thunder driving into the midst of his enemies, pursues them, unable to resist, towards the wall of Heaven; which opening, they leap down with horrour and confusion into the place of punishment prepared for them in the deep: MESSIAH returns with triumph to his Father.

"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 Heaven

Grateful vicissitude, like day and night;
Light issues forth, and at the other door

Obsequious Darkness enters, till her hour [well
To veil the Heaven, though darkness there might
Seem twilight here: and now went forth the

Such as in highest Heaven, array'd in gold[Morn

Empyreal; from before her vanish'd Night,
Shot through with orient beams; when all the plait
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; anl 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 [worlds
To stand approv'd in sight of God, though
Judg'd thee perverse: the casier 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,
Equal in number to that godless crew
Rebellious: them with fire and hostile arins
Fearless assault; and, to the brow of Heaven
Pursuing, drive them out from God and bliss,
Into their place of punishment, the gulf
Of Tartarus, which ready opens wide
His fiery Chaos to receive their fall.'

66

So spake the Sovran Voice, and clouds began
To darken all the hill, and smoke to roll
In dusky wreaths, reluctant flames, the sign,
Of wrath awak'd; nor with less dread the
Ethereal trumpet from on high 'gan blow : [loud
At which command the powers militant
That stood for Heaven, in mighty quadrate
Of union irresistible, mov'd on
[join'd
In silence their bright legions, to the sound
Of instrumental harmony, that breath'd
Heroic ardour to adventurous deeds
Under their God-like leaders, in the cause
Of God and his Messiah. Ou they move
Indissolably firm; nor obvious bill, [divide
Nor straitening vale, nor wood, nor stream,
Their perfect ranks; for high above the ground
Their march was, and the passive air uphore
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 [wide,
Of Heaven they march'd, and many a province
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 aspect, and nearer view
Bristled with upright beams innumerable

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Of rigid spears, and helmets throng'd, and shields
Various, with boastful argument pourtray'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 [vain
Aspirer; but their thoughts prov'd fond and
In the mid way: 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, enclos'd

With flaming cherubim, and golden shields;
Then lighted from his gorgeous thone, 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.

"O Heaven! that such resemblance of the Should yet remain, where faith and reälty [Highest Remain not: wherefore should not strength and might 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.'

| Of my revenge, first sought for, thou return'st
From flight, seditious angel! to receive
Thy merited reward, the first assay [tongue,
Of this right hand provok'd since first that.
Inspir'd with contradiction, durst oppose
A third part of the gods, in synod met
Their deities to assert; who, while they feel
Vigour 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,
Ministring spirits, train'd up in feast and song!
Such bast thou arm'd, the minstrelsy of Heaven,
Servility, with freedom to contend, [prove."
As both their deeds compar'd this day shall
"To whom in brief thus Abdiel stern replied.
Apostate! still thou err'st, nor end wilt find
Oferring, 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;
Yet lewdly dar'st our ministring upbraid.
Reign thou in flell, thy kingdom; let me serve
In Heaven God ever blest, and his divine
Behests obey, worthiest to be obey'd; [while
Yet chains in Hell, not realms, expect: mean
Fromme 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
Such ruin intercept: ten paces huge [shield,
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
Thus foil'd their mightiest; ours joy fill'd, and
Presage of victory, and fierce desire [shout,
Of battle: whereat Michaël bid sound [Heaven
The arch-angel trumpet; through the vast of
It sounded, and the faithful arinies 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 clamour, such as heard in Heaven till now
Was never; arms on armour 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 voilies 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? when
Millions of fierce encountering angels fought

**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.

“Proud, art thou met ? thy hope was to have The height of thy aspiring unoppos'd, [reach'd The throne of God unguarded, and his side Abandon'd, at the terrour 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!

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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 Army against army numberless to raise 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 warriour 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 arch-angel 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 These acts of hateful strife, hateful to all, [seest 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 Of thy rebellion! how hast thou instill'd Thy malice into thousands, once upright [here And faithful, now proved false! But think not 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, [God, Or some more sudden vengeance, wing'd from Precipitate thee with augmented pain.'

"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 To flight, or if to fall, but that they rise [these Unvanquish'd, easier to transact with me That thou should'st hope, imperious, and with threats

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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: mean while thy utmost force,
And join him nam'd Almighty to thy aid,
I fly not, but have sought thee far and nigh,'
"They ended parle, 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
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 horrour: from each hand with speed retir'd,
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 [found
Should combat, and their jarring spheres con-
Together both with next to almighty arm
Up-lifted 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 armoury 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
Not long divisible; and from the gash [clos'd,
A stream of nectarous humour issuing flow'd
Sanguine, such as celestial spirits may bleed,
And all his armour stain'd, ere while 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 through-
Vital in every part, not as frail man [out
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 colour, shape, or size
Assume, as likes them best, condense or rare.

"Mean while in other parts like deeds deserr'd
Memorial, where the might of Gabriel fought,
And with fierce ensigns pierc'd the deep array
Of Moloch, furious king; who him defied,
And at his chariot-wheels to drag him bound

Threaten'd, nor from the Holy One of Heaven
Refrain'd his tongue blasphemous; 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,
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

What Heaven's Lord had powerfullest to send
Against us from about his throne, and judg'd
Sufficient to subdue us to his will,
But proves not so: then fallible, it seems,
Of future we may deem him, though till now
Omniscient thought. True is, less firmly arm'd,
Some disadvantage we endur'd and pain,
Till now not known, but, known, as soon con-
temn'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,
In might though wonderous and in acts of war,
Nor of renown less eager, yet by doom
Cancell'd from Heaven and sacred memory,
Nameless in dark oblivion let them dwell.
For strength from truth divided, and from just,
Illaudable, nought merits but dispraise
And ignominy; yet to glory aspires
Vain-glorious, and through infamy seeks fame :
Therefore eternal silence be their doom.

"And now, their mightiest quell'd, the battle
swerv'd,

With many an inroad gor'd; deformed rout
Enter'd, and foul disorder; all the ground
With shiver'd armour strown, and on a heap
Chariot and charioteer lay overturn'd,
And fiery-foaming steeds; what stood, recoil'd
O'er-wearied, through the faint Satanic host
Defensive scarce, or with pale fear surpris'd,
Then first with fear surpris'd, and sense of pain,
Fled ignominious, to such evil brought
By sin of disobedience; till that hour
Not liable to fear, or flight, or pain.
Far otherwise the inviolable saints,
In cubic phalanx firm, advanc'd entire,
Invulnerable, impenetrably arm'd;
Such high advantages their innocence
Gave them above their foes; not to have sinn'd,
Not to have disobey'd; in fight they stood
Unwearied, unobnoxious to be pain'd

By wound, though from their place by violence
mov'd.
[ven

"Now Night her course began, and, over HeaInducing darkness, grateful truce impos'd, And silence on the odious din of war: Under her cloudy covert both retir'd, Victor and vanquish'd: on the foughten field Michaël and his angels prevalent Encamping, plac'd in guard their watches round, Cherubic waving fires: on the other part, Satan with his rebellious disappear'd, Far in the dark dislodg'd; and, void of rest, His potentates to council call'd by night; And in the midst thus undismay'd began.

"O now in danger tried, now known in arms Not to be overpower'd, companions dear, Found worthy not of liberty alone, Too mean pretence! but what we more affect, Honour, dominion, glory, and renown; Who have sustain'd one day in doubtful fight (And if one day, why not eternal days?)

Since now we find this our empyreal form
Incapable of mortal injury,

Imperishable, and though pierc'd with wound,
Soon closing, and by native vigour heal'd.
Of evil then so small, as casy think
The remedy; perhaps more valid arms,
Weapons more violent, when next we meet,
May serve to better us, and worse our foes,
Or equal what between us made the odds,
In nature none: if other hidden cause
Left them superior, while we can preserve
Unhurt our minds, and understanding sound,
Due search and consultation will disclose.'

"He sat; and in the assembly next upstood Nisroch, of principalities the prime; As one he stood escap'd from cruel fight, Sore toil'd, his riven arms to havoc hewn, And cloudy in aspéct thus answering spake.

"Deliverer from new lords, leader to free Enjoyment of our right as gods; yet hard For gods, and too unequal work we find, Against unequal arms to fight in pain, Against unpain'd, impassive; from which evil Ruin must needs ensue; for what avails Valour or strength, though matchless, quell'd with pain

Which all subdues, and makes remiss the hands
Of mightiest? Sense of pleasure we may well
Spare out of life perhaps, and not repine,
But live content, which is the calmest life:
But pain is perfect misery, the worst
Of evils, and, excessive, overturns

All patience. He, who therefore can invent
With what more forcible we may offend
Our yet unwounded enemies, or arm
Ourselves with like defence, to me deserves
No less than for deliverance what we owe.'

"Whereto with look compos'd Satan replied. 'Not uninvented that, which thou aright Believ'st so main to our success, I bring. Which of us who beholds the bright surface Of this ethereous mould whereon we stand, This continent of spacious Heaven adorn'd With plant, fruit, flower ambrosial, gems, and Whose eye so superficially surveys [gold; These things, as not to mind from whence they grow

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Deep under ground, materials dark and crude,
Of spiritous and fiery spume, till, touch'd
With Heaven's ray, and temper'd, they shoot
forth

So beauteous, opening to the ambient light?
These in their dark nativity the deep
Shall yield us, pregnant with infernal flame;
Which, into hollow engines, long and round,
Thick ramm'd, at the other bore with touch of
Dilated and infuriate, shall send forth
From far, with thundering noise, among our foes
Such implements of mischief, as shall dash
To pieces, and o'erwhelm whatever stands

[fire

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