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To peaceful counsels, and the settled state Some easier enterprise? There is a place,
Of order, how in safety best we may

(If ancient and prophetic fame in Heaven
Compose our present evils, with regard Err not) another world, the happy seat
Of what we are, and were; dismissing quite Of some new race call'd Man, about this time
All thoughts of war. Ye have what I advise." To be created like to us, though less
He scarce had finish'd, when such murmur In power and excellence, but favor’d more
fill'd

Of him who rules above; so was his will
The assembly, as when hollow rocks retain Pronounc'd among the gods, and by an oath,
The sound of blustering winds, which all night That shook Heaven's whole circumference, con
long

firm'd.
Had rous'd the sea, now with hoarse cadence lull Thither let us bend all our thoughts, to learn
Seafaring men o'erwatch'd, whose bark by chance What creatures there inhabit, of what mould
Or pinnace anchors in a craggy bay

Or substance, how endued, and what their power
After the tempest: such applause was heard And where their weakness, how attempted besi,
As Mammon ended, and his sentence pleas'd, By force or subtlety. Though Heaven be shut,
Advising peace: for such another field

And Heaven's high Arbitrator sit secure
They dreaded worse than Hell: so much the fear In his own strength, this place may lie expos’d,
Of thunder and the sword of Michaël

The utmost border of his kingdom, left
Wrought still within them, and no less desire To their desence who hold it: here perhaps
To found this nether empire, which might rise Some advantageous act may be achieved
By policy, and long process of time,

By sudden onset; either with Hell fire
In emulation opposite to Heaven,

To waste his whole creation, or possess
Which when Beëlzebub perceiv'd, than whom All as our own, and drive, as we were driven,
Satan except, none higher sat, with grave The puny habitants, or, if not drive,
Aspéct he rose, and in his rising seem'd

Seduce them to our party, that their God
A pillar of state ; deep on his front engraven May prove their foe, and with repenting hand
Deliberation sat, and public care ;

A bolish his own works. This would surpass
And princely counsel in his face yet shone, Common revenge, and interrupt his joy
Majestic, though in ruin : sage he stood

In our confusion, and our joy upraise
With Atlantean shoulders fit to bear

In his disturbance; when his darling sons,
The weight of mightiest monarchies; his look Hurl'd headlong to partake with us, shall curse
Drew audience and attention still as night Their frail original, and faded bliss,
Or summer's noontide air, while thus he spake. Faded so soon. Advise, if this be worth
• Thrones and imperial powers, offspring of Attempting, or to sit in darkness here
Heaven,

Hatching vain empires." Thus Beelzebub
Ethereal virtues : or these titles now

Pleaded his devilish counsel, first devis d
Must we renounce, and, changing style, be call'd By Satan, and in part propos'd: for whence,
Princes of Hell? for so the popular vote

But from the author of all ill, could spring
Inclines here to continue, and build up here So deep a malice, io confound the race
A growing empire; doubtless; while we dreain, of mankind in one root, and Earth with Hell
And know not that the king of Heaven hath doom'd To mingle and involve, done all to spite
This place our dungeon; not our safe retreat The great Creator? But their spite still serves
Beyond his potent arm, to live exempt

His glory to augment. The bold design
From Heaven's high jurisdiction, in new league Pleas'd highly those infernal states, and joy
Banded against his throne, but to remain Sparkled in all their eyes; with full assent
In strictest bondage, though thus far remov'd They vote : whereat his speech he thus renews.
Under the inevitable curb, reserv'd

“Well have ye judg’d, well ended long debate His captive multitude: for he, be sure,

Synod of gods, and, like to what ye are,
In height or depth, still first and last will reign Great things resolv'd, which, from the lowest deep,
Sole king, and of his kingdom lose no part Will once more lift us up, in spite of fate,
By our revolt; but over Hell extend

Nearer our ancient seat; perhaps in view
His empire, and with iron sceptre rule

Of those bright confines, whence, with neighbor-
Us here, as with his golden those in Heaven.

ing arms
What sit we then projecting peace and war? And opportune excursion, we may chance
War hath determin'd us, and foil'd with loss Re-enter Heaven: or else in some mild zone
Irreparable: terms of peace yet none

Dwell, not un visited of Heaven's fair light, Vouchsaf'd or sought; for what peace will be Secure; and at the brightening orient beam given

Purge off this gloom : the soft delicious air, To us enslav'd, but custody severe

To heal the scar of these corrosive fires, And stripes, and arbitrary punishment

Shall breathe her balm. But first whom shall we Inflicted? and what peace can we return

send But to our power hostility and hate,

In search of this new world ? whom shall we find
Untam'd reluctance, and revenge, though slow, Sufficient? who shall tempt with wandering feet
Yet ever plotting how the conqueror least The dark unbottom'd infinite abyss,
May reap his conquest, and may least rejoice And through the palpable obscure find out
In doing what we most in suffering feel ? His uncouth way, or spread his aery flight
Nor will occasion want, nor shall we need Upborne with indefatigable wings
With dangerous expedition to invade

Over the vast abrupt, ere he arrive
Heaven, whose high walls fear no assault or siege, The happy isle ? What strength what art can
Or ambush from the deep. What if we find

then

Suffice, or what evasion bear him safe

Their rising all at once, was as the sound Through the strict senteries and stations thick Of thunder heard remote. Towards him they bend Of angels watching round ? Here he had need With awful reverence prone; and as a god All circumspection, and we now no less Extol him equal to the Highest in Heaven: Choice in our suffrage ; for, on whom we send, Nor fail'd they to express how much they prais'd, The weight of all and our last hope relies." That for the general safety he despis'd

This said, he sat; and expectation held His own: for neither do the spirits damn'd His look suspense, awaiting who appear'd Lose all their virtue; lest bad men should boast To second, or oppose, or undertake

Their specious deeds on earth which glory excites, The perilous attempt: but all sat mute,

Or close ambition, varnish'd o'er with zeal. Pondering the danger with deep thoughts; and Thus they their doubtful consultations dark each

Ended, rejoicing in their matchless chief: In other's countenance read his own dismay As when from mountain-tops the dusky clouds Astonish'd: none among the choice and prime Ascending, while the north-wind sleeps, o'erspread of those Heaven-warring champions could be Heaven's cheerful face, the louring element found

Scowls o'er the darken'd landskip snow, or shower, So hardy, as to proffer or accept,

If chance the radiant Sun with farewell sweet Alone, the dreadful voyage; till at last

Extend his evening beam, the fields revive, Satan, whom now transcendent glory rais'd The birds their notes renew, and bleating herds Above his fellows, with monarchal pride, Attest their joy, that hill and valley rings. Conscious of highest worth, unmov'd thus spake. O shame to men! devil with devil damn'd

“O progeny of Heaven, empyreal thrones, Firm concord holds, men only disagree With reason hath deep silence and demur of creatures rational, though under hope Seiz'd us, though undismay'd. Long is the way Of heavenly grace: and, God proclaiming peace, And hard, that out of Hell leads up to light: Yet live in hatred, enmity, and strife, Our prison strong; this huge convex of fire, Among themselves, and levy cruel wars, Outrageous to devour, immures us round Wasting the Earth, each other to destroy: Ninefold; and gates of burning adamant,

As if (which might induce us to accord) Barr'd over us, prohibit all egress.

Man had not hellish foes enow besides, These pass'd, if any pass, the void profound That, day and night, for his destruction wait. Of unessential Night receives him next

The Stygian council thus dissolv'd; and forth Wide gaping, and with utter loss of being In order came the grand infernal peers; Threatens him, plung'd in that abortive gulf. Midst came their mighty paramount, and seem'd If thence he 'scape into whatever world,

Alone the antagonist of Heaven, nor less Or unknown region, what remains him less Than Hell's dread emperor, with pomp supreme, Than unknown dangers, and as hard escape ? And godlike imitated stale : him round But I should ill become this throne, O peers, A globe of fiery seraphim enclos'd, And this imperial sovranty, adorn'd

With bright imblazonry, and horrent arms. With splendor, arm'd with power, if aught pro- Then of their session ended they bid cry pos'd

With trumpets' regal sound the great result: And judg'd of public moment, in the shape Towards the four winds four speedy cherubim Of difficulty, or danger, could deter

Put to their mouths the sounding alchemy, Me from attempting. Wherefore do I assume By herald's voice explain'd; the hollow abyss These royalties, and not refuse to reign,

Heard far and wide, and all the host of Hell Refusing to accept as great a share

With deafening shout return'd them loud acclaim. Of hazard as of honor, due alike

Thence more at ease their minds, and somewhat To him who reigns, and so much to him due

rais'd Of hazard more, as he above the rest

By false presumptuous hope, the ranged powers High honor'd sits ? Go therefore, mighty powers, Disband, and, wandering, each his several way Terror of Heaven, though fall’n ; intend at Pursues, as inclination or sad choice home,

Leads him, perplex'd where he may likeliest find While here shall be our home, what best may ease Truce to his restless thoughts, and entertain The present misery, and render Hell

The irksome hours, till his great chief return. More tolerable; if there be cure or charm Part on the plain, or in the air sublime, To respite, or deceive, or slack the pain Upon the wing, or in swift race contend, Of this ill mansion : intermit no watch

As at the Olympian games or Pythian fields; Against a wakeful foe, while I abroad

Part curb their fiery steeds, or shun the goal Through all the coasts of dark destruction seek With rapid wheels, or fronted brígades form. Deliverance for us all: this enterprise

As when, to warn proud cities, war appears None shall partake with me.” Thus saying rose Wag'd in the troubled sky, and armies rush The monarch, and prevented all reply;

To battle in the clouds, before each van Prudent, lest, from his resolution rais'd,

Prick forth the aery knights, and couch their spears Others among the chief might offer now Till thickest legions close ; with feats of arms (Certain to be refus'd) what erst they fear'd; From either end of Heaven the welkin burns. And, so refus’d, might in opinion stand

Others, with vast Typhæan rage more fell, His rivals; winning cheap the high repute, Rend up both rocks and hills, and ride the air Which he through hazard huge must earn. But In whirlwind ; Hell scarce holds the wild uproar: they

As when Alcides, from Oechalia crown'd Dreaded not more the adventure, than his voice With conquest, felt the envenom'd robe, and tore Forbidding; and at once with him they rose : Through pain up by the roots Thessalian pines,

And Lichas from the top of Oeta threw

The lip of Tantalus. Thus roving on Into th' Euboic sea. Others more mild,

In confus'd march forlorn, the adventurous bands Retreated in a silent valley, sing

With shuddering horror pale, and eyes aghast, With notes angelical to many a harp

View'd first their lamentable lot, and found Their own heroic deeds and hapless fall No rest. Through many a dark and dreary vale By doom of battle ; and complain that fate They pass’d, and many a region dolorous, Free virtue should enthral to force or chance. O'er many a frozen, many a fiery Alp, Their song was partial; but the harmony Rocks, caves, lakes, sens, bogs, dens, and shades of (What could it less when spirits immortal sing ?)

death, Suspended Hell, and took with ravishment A universe of death ; which God by curse The thronging audience. In discourse more sweet Created evil, for evil only good, (Fur eloquence the soul, song charms the sense,) Where all life dies, death lives, and Nature breeds, Others apart sat on a hill retir'd,

Perverse, all monstrous, all prodigious things, In thoughts more elevate, and reason'd high Abominable, inutterable, and worse Of providence, foreknowledge, will, and fate, Than fables yet have feign'd, or fear conceiv'd, Fix'd fate, free will, foreknowledge absolute, Gorgons, and Hydras, and Chimeras dire. And found no end, in wandering mazes lost. Meanwhile, the adversary of God and man, Of good and evil much they argued then, Satan, with thoughts inflam'd of highest design, Of happiness and final misery,

Puts on swift wings, and towards the gates of Hell Passion and apathy, and glory and shame, Explores his solitary flight: sometimes Vain wisdom all, and false philosophy:

He scours the right hand coast, sometimes the left; Yet, with a pleasing sorcery, could charm Now shaves with level wing the deep, then soars Pain for a while or anguish, and excite

Up to the fiery concave towering high.
Fallacious hope, or arm th' obdured breast As when far off at sea a fleet descried
With stubborn patience, as with triple steel. Hangs in the clouds, by equinoctial winds
Another part, in squadrons and gross bands, Close sailing from Bengala, or the isles
On bold adventure to discover wide

or Ternate and Tidore, whence merchants bring
That dismal world, if any clime perhaps Their spicy drugs; they, on the trading food,
Might yield them easier habitation, bend Through the wide Ethiopian to the Cape,
Four ways their flying march, along the banks Ply stemming nightly toward the pole : so seem'd
Of four infernal rivers, that disgorge

Far off the flying fiend. At last appear Into the burning lake their baleful streams : Hell bounds, high reaching to the horrid roof, Abhorred Styx, the flood of deadly hate; And thrice three-fold the gates; three-folds were Sad Acheron, of sorrow, black and deep;

brass, Cocytus, nam'd of lamentation loud

Three iron, three of adamantine rock Heard on the rueful stream; fierce Phlegethon, Impenetrable, impal'd with circling fire, Whose waves of torrent fire inflame with rage. Yet unconsum'd. Before the gates there sat Far off from these, a slow and silent stream, On either side a formidable shape ; Lethe, the river of oblivion, rolls

The one seem'd woman to the waist, and fair; Her watery labyrinth, whereof who drinks, But ended foul in many a scaly fold Forth with his former state and being forgets, Voluminous and vast; a serpent arm'd Forgets both joy and grief, pleasure and pain. With mortal sting: About her middle round Beyond this flood a frozen continent

A cry of Hell-hounds never ceasing bark'd Lies dark and wild, beat with perpetual storms With wide Cerberean mouths full loud, and rung Of whirlwind and dire hail, which on firm land A hideous peal; yet, when they list, would creep, Thaws not, but gathers heap, and ruin seems If aught disturb’d their noise, into her womb, Of ancient pile; or else deep snow and ice. And kennel there; yet there still bark'd and howl'd A gulf profound as that Serbonian bog

Within unseen. Far less abhorr'd than these Betwixt Damiata and Mount Casius old,

Vex'd Scylla, bathing in the sea that parts Where armies whole have sunk: the parching air Calabria from the hoarse Trinacrian shore : Barns frore, and cold performs the effect of fire. Nor uglier follow the night-hag, when, callid Thither by harpy-fooled furies hal'd

In secret, riding through the air she comes, At certain revolutions, all the damn'd

Lur'd with the smell of infant blood, to dance Are brought; and feel by turns the bitter change With Lapland witches, while the laboring Moon Of fierce extremes, extremes by change more Eclipses at their charms. The other shape, fierce,

If shape it might be call’d that shape had none From beds of raging fire, to starve in ice Distinguishable in member, joint, or limb; Their soft ethereal warmth, and there to pine Or substance might be callid that shadow seemd Immovable, infix'd, and frozen round,

For each seem'd either: black it stood as night, Periods of time, thence hurried back to fire. Fierce as ten furies, terrible as Hell, They ferry over this Lethean sound

And shook a dreadful dart; what seem'd his hcan Both to and fro, their sorrow to augment,

The likeness of a kingly crown had on. And wish and struggle, as they pass, to reach Satan was now at hand, and from his seat The tempting stream, with one small drop to lose The monster moving onward came as fast In sweet forgetfulness all pain and woe,

With horrid strides; Hell trembled as he strode. All in one moment, and so near the brink; The undaunted fiend what this might be admir'd But Fate withstands, and to oppose the attempt Admir'd, not fear’d; God and his Son except, Medusa with Gorgonian terror guards

Created thing nought valued he, nor shunn'd; The ford, and of itself the water flies

And with disdainful look thus first began. A l taste of living wight, as once it fled

Whence and what art thou, execrable shape

That dar'st, though grim and terrible, advance All on a sudden, miserable pain
Thy miscreated front athwart my way

Surpris'd thee, dim thine eyes, and dizzy swum To yonder gates? through them I mean to pass, In darkness, while thy head flames thick and fast That be assur'd, without leave ask'd of thee: Threw forth : till, on the left side opening wide, Retire, or taste thy folly, and learn by proof, Likest to thee in shape and countenance bright Ilell-born, not to contend with spirits of Heaven.” | Then shining heavenly fair, a goddess arm’d,

To whom the goblin full of wrath replied, Out of thy head I sprung: amazement seiz'd “ Art thou that traitor-angel, art thou he, All the host of Heaven; back they recoil'd afraid Who first broke peace in Heaven, and faith, till then At first, and call'd me Sin, and for a sign Unbroken ; and in proud rebellious arms Portentous held me; but, familiar grown, Drew after him the third part of Heaven's sons I pleas'd, and with attractive graces won Conjúr'd against the Highest; for which both thou The most averse, thee chiefly, who full oft And they, outcast from God, are here condemn'd Thyself in me thy perfect image viewing To waste eternal days in woe and pain?

Becam’st enamor'd, and such joy thou took'st And reckon’st thou thyself with spirits of Heaven, With me in secret, that my womb conceiv'd Hell-doom'd, and breath’st defiance here and scorn, A growing burden. Meanwhile war arose, Where I reign king, and, to enrage thee more, And fields were fought in Heaven; wherein reThy king and lord ? Back to thy punishment,

main'd False fugitive, and to thy speed add wings, (For what could else ?) to our Almighty Foe Lest with a whip of scorpions I pursue Clear victory; to our part loss and rout, Thy lingering, or with one stroke of this dart Through all the empyréan; down they fell Strange horror seize thee, and pangs unfelt before.” Driven headlong from the pitch of Heaven, down

So spake the grisly terror, and in shape, Into this deep; and in the general fall So speaking and so threatening, grew ten-fold I also; at which time, this powerful key More dreadful and deform. On the other side, Into my hand was given, with charge to keep Incens'd with indignation, Satan stood

These gates for ever shut, which none can pass Unterrified, and like a comet burn'd,

Without my opening. Pensive here I sat That fires the length of Ophiuchus huge Alone; but long I sat not, till my womb, In the arctic sky, and from his horrid hair Pregnant by thee, and now excessive grown, Shakes pestilence and war. Each at the bead Prodigious motion felt, and rueful throes. Levell’d his deadly aim; their fatal hands At last this odious offspring whom thou seest, No second stroke intend ; and such a frown Thine own begotten, breaking violent way Each cast at the other, as when two black clouds, Tore through my entrails, that with fear and pain With Heaven's artillery fraught, come rattling on Distorted, all my nether shape thus grew Over the Caspian, then stand front to front, Transform'd: but he my inbred enemy Hovering a space, till winds the signal blow Forth issued, brandishing his fatal dart To join their dark encounter in mid air: Made to destroy! I fled, and cried out Death! So frown'd the mighty combatants, that Hell Hell trembled at the hideous name, and sigh'd Grew darker at their frown; so match'd they stood; From all her caves, and back resounded Death! For never but once more was either like

I fled, but he pursued, (though more, it seems, To meet so great a foe: and now great deeds Inflam'd with lust than rage,) and, swifter far, Had been achiev'd, whereof all Hell had rung, Me overtook his mother all dismay'd, Had not the snaky sorceress, that sat

And in embraces forcible and foul Fast by Hell-gate, and kept the fatal key, Engendering with me, of that rape begot Ris'n, and with hideous outcry rush'd between. These yelling monsters, that with ceaseless cry

“O father, what intends thy hand," she cried, Surround me, as thou saw'st, hourly conceiv'd “Against thy only son? What fury, O son, And hourly born, with sorrow infinite Possesses thee to bend that mortal dart

To me; for, when they list, into the womb
Against thy father's head ? and know'st for whom? That bred them they return, and howl and gnaw
For him who sits above and laughs the while My bowels, their repasi; then bursting forth
At thee ordain'd his drudge, to execute

Afresh with conscious terrors vex me round,
Whate'er his wrath, which he calls justice, bids; That rest or intermission none I find.
His wrath, which one day will destroy ye both." Before mine eyes in opposition sits

She spake, and at her words the hellish pest Grim Death, my son and foe; who sets them on, Forbore ; then these to her Satan return'd. And me his parent would full soon devour

“ So strange thy outcry, and thy words so strange For want of other prey, but that he knows Thou interposest, that my sudden hand,

His end with mine involv'd; and knows that I Prevented, spares to tell thee yet by deeds Should prove a bitter morsel, and his bane, What it intends; till first I know of thee, Whenever that shall be ; so Fate pronounc'd. What thing thou art, thus double-form’d; and why But thou, O father, I forewarn thee, shun In this infernal vale first met, thou call'st

His deadly arrow; neither vainly hope Me father, and that phantasm call'st my son : To be invulnerable in those bright arms, I know thee not, nor ever saw till now

Though temper'd heavenly; for that mortal dint, Sight more detestable than him and thee." Save he who reigns above, none can resist."

To whom thus the portress of Hell-gate replied, She finish'd; and the subtle fiend his lore
" Hast thou forgot me then, and do I seem Soon learn'd, now milder, and thus answer'd smooth
Now in thine eye so foul? once deem'd so fair “Dear daughter, since thou claim'st me for thy
In Heaven, when at the assembly, and in sight

sire, Of all the seraphim with thee combin'd And my fair son here show'st me, the dear pledgo In bold conspiracy 'gainst Heaven's King, Of dalliance had with thee in Heaven, and joys

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Then sweet, now sad to mention, through dire change So wide they stood, and like a furnace mouth Befall'n us, unforeseen, unthought of; know, Cast forth redounding smoke and ruddy flame. I come no enemy, but to set free

Before their eyes in sudden view appear From out this dark and dismal house of pain The secrets of the hoary deep; a dark Bosh him and thee, and all the heavenly host Illimitable ocean, without bound, Of spirits, that, in our just pretences arm'd, Without dimension, where length, breadth, and Fell with us from on high : from them I go

height, This uncouth errand sole ; and one for all And time, and place, are lost; where eldest Night Myself expose, with lonely steps to tread

And Chaos, ancestors of Nature, hold The unsounded deep, and through the void immense Eternal anarchy, amidst the noise To search with wondering quest a place foretold Of endless wars, and by confusion stand. Should be, and, by concurring signs, ere now For Hot, Cold, Moist, and Dry, four champions Created vast and round, a place of bliss

fierce, In the purlieus of Heaven, and therein plac'd Strive here for mastery, and to battle bring A race of upstart creatures, to supply

Their embryon atoms ; they around the flag Perhaps our vacant room; though more remov'd, Of each his faction, in their several clans, Lest Heaven, surcharg'd with potent multitude, Light-arm'd or heavy, sharp, smooth, swift, or slow Might hap to move new broils. Be this or aught Swarm populous, unnumber'd as the sands Than this more secret now design'd, I haste Of Barca or Cyrene's torrid soil, To know; and, this once known, shall soon return, Levied to side with warring winds, and poise And bring ye to the place where thou and Death Their lighter wings. To whom these most adhere Shall dwell at ease, and up and down unseen He rules a moment: Chaos umpire sits, Wing silently the buxom air, imbalm’d

And by decision more embroils the fray With odors : there ye shall be fed and fillid By which he reigns: next him high arbiter Immeasurably; all things shall be your prey.” Chance governs all. Into this wild abyss, He ceas'd, for both seem'd highly pleas'd, and The womb of Nature, and perhaps her grave, Death

Of neither sea, nor shore, nor air, nor fire, Grinn'd horrible a ghastly smile, to hear But all these in their pregnant causes mix'd His famine should be fill'd; and blest his maw Consus'dly, and which thus must ever fight, Destin'd to that good hour: no less rejoic'd Unless the Almighty Maker them ordain His mother bad, and thus bespake her sire. His dark materials to create more worlds ;

“The key of this infernal pit by due, Into this wild abyss the wary fiend And by command of Heaven's all-powerful King, Stood on the brink of Hell, and look'd a while. I keep, by him forbidden to unlock

Pondering his voyage: for no narrow frith These adamantine gates ; against all force He had to cross. Nor was his ear less peal'd Death ready stands to interpose his dart,

With noises loud and ruinous, (to compare Fearless to be o'ermatch'd by living might. Great things with small,) that when Bellona storms But what owe I to his commands above

With all her battering engines bent to rase Who hates me, and hath hither thrust me down Some capital city; or less than if this frame Into this gloom of Tartarus profound,

Of Heaven were falling, and these elements To sit in hateful office here confin'd,

In mutiny had from her axle torn Inhabitant of Heaven, and heavenly-born, The sted fast Earth. At last his sail-broad vang Here in perpetual agony and pain,

He spreads for flight, and in the surging smoke With terrors and with clamors compass'd round Uplified spurns the ground; thence many a league, Of mine own brood, that on my bowels feed ? As in a cloudy chair, ascending rides Thou art my father, thou my author, thou Audacious; but, that seal soon failing, meets My being gav’st me; whom should I obey A vast vacuity: all unawares But thee? whom follow? thou wilt bring me soon Fluttering his pennons vain, plumb down he drops To that new world of light and bliss, among Ten thousand fathoms deep; and to this hour The gods who live at ease, where I shall reign Down had been falling, had not by ill chance At thy right hand voluptuous, as beseems The strong rebuff of some tumultuous cloud, Thy daughter and thy darling, without end." Instinct with fire and nitre, hurried him

Thus saying, from her side the fatal key, As many miles aloft: that fury stay'd, Sad instrument of all our woe, she took ;

Quench'd in a boggy Syrtis, neither sea, And, towards the gate rolling her bestial train, Nor good dry land : nigh founder'd on he fares, Forth with the huge portcullis high up-drew, Treading the crude consistence, half on foot, Which but herself, not all the Stygian powers Half flying ; behoves him now both oar and sail. Could once have mov'd; then in the key-hole As when a gryphon, through the wilderness turns

With winged course, o'er hill or moory dale, The intricate wards, and every bolt and bar Pursues the Arimaspian, who by stealth Of massy iron or solid rock with ease

Had from his wakeful custody purloin'd Unfastens. On a sudden open fly

The guarded gold : so eagerly the fiend With impetuous recoil and jarring sound O'er bog, or steep, through strait, rough, dense, or The infernal doors, and on their hinges grate Harsh thunder, that the lowest bottom shook With head, hands, wings, or feet, pursues his way, Of Erebus. She open'd, but to shut

And swims, or sinks, or wades, or creeps, or flies; Excell'd her power; the gates wide open stood, Al length a universal bubbub wild That with extended wings a banner'd host, Of stunning sounds, and voices all confus'd, Under spread ensigns marching, might pass through Borne through the hollow dark. assaults his ear With horse and chariots rank'd in loose array ; With loudest vehemence: thither he plies,

rare,

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