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Hell their fit habitation fraught with fire
Unquenchable, the house of wo and pain.
Disburden'd heav'n rejoic'd, and soon repair'd
Her mural breach, returning whence it rollid.
Sole victor from the expulsion of his foes
Messiah his triumphal chariot turn'd: -
To meet him all his saints, who silent stood
Eye-witnesses of his almighty acts,
With jubilee advanc'd : and as they went,
Shaded with branching palm, each order bright,
Sung triumph, and him sung victorious King,
Son, Heir, and Lord, to him dominion giv'n .
Worthiest to reign: he celebrated rode '
Triumphant through mid heav'n into the courts
And temple of his mighty Father thron'd
On high; who into glory him receiv'd
Where now he sits at the right hand of bliss.
Thus measuring things in heav'n by things on earth. At thy request, and that thou may'st beware By what is past, to thee I have reveal'd What might have else to human race been hid; The discord which befel, and war in hear'n Among th' angelic pow'rs, and the deep fall i Of those too high aspiring, who rebella With satan; he who envies now thy state, Who now is plotting how he may seduce Thee also from obedience, that with him Bereavd of happiness thou may'st partake His punishment, eternal misery; i n Which would be all his solace and revengė, As a despite done against the most High, Thee once to gain companions of his wo. But listen not to his temptations, warn Thy weaker; let it profit thee t' have heard . By terrible example the reward Of disobedience ; firm they might have stood, Yet fell; remember, and fear to transgress.
RAPHAEL, at the request of Adam, relates how and wherefore this
world was first created : that God, after the expelling of Satan and his angels out of Heaven, declared his pleasure to create another world and other creatures to dwell therein ; sends his Son with glory and attendence of angels, to perform the work of credtion in six days: the angels celebrate with hymns the performance thereof, and his re-ascension into Heaven.
DESCEND from heav'n, Urania, by that name,
If rightly thou art callid, whose voice divine
Following, above th’Olympian hill I soar,
Above the flight of Pegasean wing.
The meaning, not the name I call : for thou
Nor of the muses nine, nor on the top
Of old Olympus dwell'st, but heav'nly born,
Before the hills appear'd, or fountain flow'd,
Thou with eternal Wisdom didst converse,
Wisdom thy sister, and with her didst play
In presence of th' almighty Father, pleas'd
With thy celestial song. Up led by thee
Into the Heav'n of heav'ns I have presum'd,
An earthly guest, and drawn empyreal air,
Thy temp'ring; with like safety guided down
Return to me my native element :
Lest from this flying steed unrein'd (as once
Bellerophon, though from a lower clime,)
Dismounted, on th’ Aleian field I fall
Erroneous there to wander, and forlorn.
Half yet remains unsung, but narrower bound
Within the visible diurnal sphere;
Standing on earth, not rapt above the pole,
More safe I sing with mortal voice, unchang'd
To hoarse or mute, though fall’n on evil days,
On evil days though fall'n, and evil tongues ;
In darkness, and with dangers compass'd round,
And solitude: yet not alone, while thou
Visit'st my slumbers, nightly, or when morn
Purples the east : still govern thou my song,
Urania, and fit audience find, though few.
But drive far off the barbarous dissonance
Of Bacchus and his revellers, the race
Of that wild rout that tore the Thracian bard
In Rhodope, where woods and rocks had ears
To rapture, till the savage clamour drown'd
Both harp and voice ; nor could the Muse defend
Her son. So fail not thou, who thee implores :
For thou art heav'nly, she an empty dream.
Say, goddess, what ensued when Raphael,
The affable arch-angel, had forewarn'd
Adam by dire example to beware
Apostacy, by what befel in heav'n
To those apostates, lest the like befal
In Paradise to Adam or his race,
Charg'd not to touch the interdicted tree,
If they transgress, and slight that sole command,
So easily obey'd amid the choice
Of all tastes else to please their appetite,
Though wand'ring. He with his consorted Eve
The story heard attentive, and was fillid
With admiration and deep muse, to hear
Of things so high and strange, things to their thought
So unimaginable as hate in heav'n,
And war so near the peace of God in bliss
With such confusion : but the evil soon
Driv'n back redounded as a flood on those
From whom it sprung, impossible to mix
With blessedness. Whence Adam soon repeal'd
The doubts that in his heart arose : and now
Led on, yet sinless, with desire to know
What nearer might concern him, how this world
Of heav'n and earth conspicuous first began,
When and whereof created, for what cause,