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325 “ 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 330 “Pass'd through him ; but the ethereal substance clos'd,

“Not long divisible; and from the gash
A stream of nectarous humour issuing flow'd

Sanguine, such as celestial spirits may bleed,

And all his armour stain'd, erewhile so bright. 335 “ 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 340 “ 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 throughout 345 “ Vital in every part, (not as frail man,

“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:
350 “ 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.

“ Meanwhile, in other parts, like deeds deserv'd 355 “ 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 360 “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,
“Mangled with ghastly wounds through plate and mail.

“ Nor stood unmindful Abdiel to annoy
370 “ The atheist crew; but, with redoubled blow,

“ Ariel, and Arioch, and the violence
“Of Ramiel scorch'd and blasted, overthrew.

“I might relate of thousands, and their names

“ Eternize here on earth; but those elect
375 “ Angels, contented with their fame in heaven,

“Seek not the praise of men: the other sort,
“In might though wondrous 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 : 385 “ 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 390 " 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,) 395 " 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, 400 “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 405" By wound, though from their place by violence mov'd.

“Now night her course began, and, over heaven
“ Inducing darkness, grateful truce impos’d,
And silence, on the odious din of war:

“ Under her cloudy covert both retir'd,
410 “ 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,
415 “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:

“0, now in danger tried, now known in arms

“Not to be overpower'd, companions dear! 420 “ 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?)
425 “What heaven's Lord had pow'rfullest 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 430 “Omniscient thought. True 'tis, less firmly arm'd,

"Some disadvantage we endur'd, and pain
“• Till now not known, but, known, as soon contemn'd
"Since now we find this our empyreal form

Incapable of mortal injury,
435 Imperishable; and, though pierc'd with wound,

“Soon closing, and by native vigour heal'd.
"Of evil then so small, as easy think
“The remedy. Perhaps more valid arms,

Weapons more violent, when next we meet, 440 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, 445 “' 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;
450 “ And, cloudy in aspect, 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,
455 “. 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 460 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 465 «« 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: 470 “ Not uninvented that, which thou aright

66 * Believ'st so main to our success, I bring.
“Which of us who beholds the bright surface
6. Of this ethereous mould whereon we stand-

“ This continent of spacious heaven, adorn'd 475 “ With plant, fruit, flower ambrosial, gems, and gold;

" Whose eye so superficially surveys

" These things, as not to mind from whence they grow
“Deep under ground; materials dark and crude,

“Of spiritous and fiery spume, till, touch'd
480 “. With heaven's ray, and temper'd, they shoot forth

“. So beauteous, opening to the ambient light?
r. These, in their dark nativity, the deep
“Shall yield us, pregnant with infernal flame:

" Which, into hollow engines, long and round,
485 “ Thick-ramm'd, at the other bore with touch of fire

“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
490 "Adverse; that they shall fear we have disarm'd

“The Thunderer of his only dreaded bolt.
“Nor long shall be our labour ; yet, ere dawn,
". Effect shall end our wish. Meanwhile revive-

" • Abandon fear-to strength and counsel join'd 495 «« Think nothing hard, much less to be despair'd."

“ He ended, and his words their drooping cheer
“Enlighten'd, and their languish'd hope reviv'd.
“ The invention all admir'd, and each how he

“ To be the inventor miss'd; so easy it seem'd
500 “Once found, which yet unfound most would have thought

Impossible. Yet, haply, of thy race
“In future days, if malice should abound,
“Some one intent on mischief, or inspir'd

“ With dev'lish machination, might devise
505 “Like instrument to plague the sons of men

“For sin, on war and mutual slaughter bent.
“Forthwith from council to the work they flew :
“ None arguing stood: innumerable hands

“Were ready: in a moment up they turn'd 510 Wide the celestial soil, and saw beneath

“ The originals of nature in their crude

Conception: sulphurous and nitrous foam
“ They found they mingled; and, with subtle art
“ Concocted and adjusted, they reduc'd


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