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Adam the goodliest man of men fince born
His fons, the fairest of her daughters Eve.
Under a tuft of fhade that on a green
Stood whisp'ring soft, by a fresh fountain fide
They fat them down; and after no more toil
Of their sweet gard'ning labor than fuffic'd
To recommend cool Zephyr, and måde ease
More eafy, wholsome thirst and appetite
More grateful, to their fupper fruits they fell,
Nectarin fruits which the compliant boughs
Yielded them, fide-long as they fat recline.
On the foft downy bank damask'd with flowers:
The favory pulp they chew, and in the rind
Still as they thirsted scoop the brimming stream;
Nor gentle purpose, nor endearing fmiles
Wanted, nor youthful dalliance as beseems
Fair couple, link'd in happy nuptial league,
Alone as they. About them frisking play'd
All beasts of th' earth, fince wild, and of all chafe
In wood or wilderness, foreft or den;

Sporting the lion ramp'd, and in his paw

Dandled the kid; bears, tigers, ounces, pards,
Gambol'd before them; th' unwieldy elephant






To make them mirth us'd all his might, and wreath'd
His lithe probofcis; close the ferpent fly
Infinuating, wove with Gordian twine
His breaded train, and of his fatal guile
Gave proof unheeded; others on the grafs


Couch'd, and now fill'd with pasture gazing fat,

Or bedward ruminating; for the fun


Declin'd was hafting now with prone carreer
To th' ocean iles, and in th' afcending scale
Of Heav'n the stars that usher evening rofe:
When Satan still in gaze, as first he stood,
Scarce thus at length fail'd speech recover'd fad.
O Hell! what do mine eyes with grief behold!
Into our room of bliss thus high advanc'd
Creatures of other mold, earth-born perhaps,
Not Spirits, yet to heav'nly Spirits bright
Little inferior; whom my thoughts pursue
With wonder, and could love, fo lively shines
In them divine refemblance, and fuch grace



The hand that form'd them on their shape hath pour'd.
Ah gentle pair, ye little think how nigh

Your change approaches, when all these delights
Will vanish and deliver ye to woe,

More woe, the more your taste is now of joy;


Happy, but for fo happy ill fecur'd

Long to continue, and this high feat your Heaven

Ill fenc'd for Heav'n to keep out such a foe
As now is enter'd; yet no purpos'd foe
To you, whom I could pity thus forlorn,
Though I unpitied: League with you I seek,
And mutual amity so strait, fo close,

That I with you must dwell, or you with me
Henceforth; my dwelling haply may not please,
Like this fair Paradife, your fense, yet fuch
Accept your Maker's work; he gave it me,
Which I as freely give; Hell shall unfold,
To entertain you two, her wideft gates,

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And fend forth all her kings; there will be room,
Not like these narrow limits, to receive
Your numerous offspring; if no better place,
Thank him who puts me loath to this revenge
On you
who wrong me not for him who wrong`d.
And should I at your harmless innocence


Melt, as I do, yet public reason just,

Honor and empire with revenge inlarg'd,
By conqu'ring this new world, compels me now
To do what else though damn'd I should abhor.
So fpake the Fiend, and with neceffity,
'The tyrant's plea, excus'd his devilish deeds.
Then from his lofty stand on that high tree
Down he alights among the fportful herd

Of thofe four-footed kinds, himself now one,
Now other, as their shape ferv'd beft his end
Nearer to view his prey, and unespy'd

To mark what of their ftate he more might learn

By word or action mark'd: about them round
A lion now he stalks with fiery glare;
Then as a tiger, who by chance hath spy'd
In fome purlieu two gentle fawns at play,




Strait couches clofe, then rifing changes oft


His couchant watch, as one who chose his ground,

Whence rushing he might fureft seise them both
Grip'd in each paw: when Adam first of men
To first of women Eve thus moving speech,
Turn'd him all ear to hear new utterance flow.
Sole partner, and sole part, of all these joys,
Dearer thyfelf than all; needs must the Power



That made us, and for us this ample world,

Be infinitely good, and of his good

As liberal and free as infinite;


That rais'd us from the dust and plac'd us here
In all this happiness, who at his hand

Have nothing merited, nor can perform

Ought whereof he hath need, he who requires


From us no other fervice than to keep

This one, this easy charge, of all the trees
In Paradife that bear delicious fruit
So various, not to taste that only tree
Of knowledge, planted by the tree of life;


Some dreadful thing no doubt; for well thou know'st

So near grows death to life, whate'er death is,

God hath pronounc'd it death to taste that tree,

The only fign of our obedience left

Among so many signs of pow'r and rule
Conferr'd upon us, and dominion given
Over all other creatures that poffefs.

Earth, air, and fea.

Then let us not think hard One eafy prohibition, who enjoy

Free leave fo large to all things elfe, and choice

Unlimited of manifold delights:

But let us ever praise him, and extol

His bounty, following our delightful task



To prunc these growing plants, and tend these flowers, Which were it toilfome, yet with thee were fweet.

To whom.thus Eve reply'd. O thou for whom 440 And from whom I was form'd flesh of thy fiefh,

And without whom am to no end, my guide

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And head, what thou haft faid is just and right.
For we to him indeed all praises owe,
And daily thanks; I chiefly who enjoy
So far the happier lot, enjoying thee
Præeminent by fo much odds, while thou
Like confort to thyself canst no where find.
That day I oft remember, when from sleep
I first awak'd, and found myself repos'd
Under a shade on flow'rs, much wond'ring where
And what I was, whence thither brought and how.
Not distant far from thence a murm'ring found
Of waters iffued from a cave, and spread
Into a liquid plain, then ftood unmov'd
Pure as th' expanfe of Heav'n; I thither went
With unexperienc'd thought, and laid me down
On the green bank, to look into the clear
Smooth lake, that to me seem'd another sky.
As I bent down to look, just opposite





A shape within the watry gleam appear'd,
Bending to look on me: I started back,
It started back; but pleas'd I foon return'd;
Pleas'd it return'd as foon with anfw'ring looks
Of fympathy and love: there I had fix'd


Mine eyes till now, and pin'd with vain defire,
Had not a voice thus warn'd me, What thou seeft,
What there thou feeft, fair Creature, is thyself;
With thee it came and goes: but follow me,
And I will bring thee where no fhadow stays
Thy coming, and thy foft embraces, he
Whofe image thou art; him thou fhalt enjoy



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