Page images
PDF
EPUB

Rarely be found. So shall the world go on,
To good malignant, to bad men benign,
Under her own weight groaning, till the day
Appear of respiration to the just,
And vengeance to the wicked, at return
Of him so lately promised to thy aid,
The woman's Seed ; obscurely then foretold,
Now amplier known thy Saviour and thy Lord;
Last, in the clouds, from heaven to be reveal’d,
In glory of the Father, to dissolve
Satan with his perverted world; then raise
From the conflagrant mass, purged and refined,
New heavens, new earth, ages of endless date,
Founded in righteousness, and peace, and love ;
To bring forth fruits, joy and eternal bliss.”

He ended; and thus Adam last replied :
“How soon hath thy prediction, seer blest,
Measured this transient world, the race of time,
Till time stand fix'd! Beyond is all abyss,
Eternity, whose end no eye can reach.
Greatly instructed I shall hence depart;
Greatly in peace of thought; and have my fill
Of knowledge, what this vessel can contain ;
Beyond which was my folly to aspire.
Henceforth I learn, that to obey is best,
And love, with fear, the only God; to walk
As in his presence, ever to observe
His providence, and on him sole depend,
Merciful over all his works, with good
Still overcoming evil, and by small
Accomplishing great things ; by things deem'd weak
Subverting worldly strong, and worldly wise
By simply meek; that suffering for truth's sake
Is fortitude to highest victory;

And, to the faithful, death the gate of life ;
Taught this by his example, whom I now
Acknowledge my Redeemer ever blest.”

To whom thus also the angel last replied :
This having learn’d, thou hast attain'd the sum
Of wisdom; hope no higher, though all the stars
Thou knew'st by name, and all the ethereal powers,
All secrets of the deep, all nature's works,
Or works of God in heaven, air, earth, or sea,
And all the riches of this world enjoy’dst,
And all the rule, one empire; only add
Deeds to thy knowledge answerable; add faith,
Add virtue, patience, temperance; add love,
By name to come call’d charity, the soul
Of all the rest : then wilt thou not be loth
To leave this Paradise, but shalt possess
A paradise within thee, happier far.
Let us descend now, therefore, from this top
Of speculation ; for the hour precise
Exacts our parting hence; and, see! the guards,
By me encamp'd on yonder hill, expect
Their motion, at whose front a flaming sword,
In signal of remove, waves fiercely round.
We may no longer stay: go, waken Eve;
Her also I with gentle dreams have calm'd,
Portending good, and all her spirits composed
To meek submission : thou, at season fit,
Let her with thee partake what thou hast heard ;
Chiefly, what may concern her faith to know,
The

great deliverance by her seed to come (For by the woman's seed) on all mankind ; That ye may live, which will be many days, Both in one faith unanimous, though sad, With cause, for evils past, yet much more cheer'd

With meditation on the happy end."
He ended, and they both descend the bill ;
Descended, Adam to the bower, where Eve
Lay sleeping, ran before, but found her waked ;
And thus with words not sad she him received :

“Whence thou return'st, and whither went'st, I know ;
For God is also in sleep; and dreams advise,
Which he hath sent propitious, some great good
Presaging, since, with sorrow and heart's distress
Wearied, I fell asleep: but now lead on-
In me is no delay: with thee to go,
Is to stay here ; without thee here to stay,
Is to go hence unwilling ; thou to me
Art all things under heaven, all places thou,
Who for my wilful crime art banish'd hence.
This further consolation yet secure
I carry hence ; though all by me is lost,
Such favour I, unworthy, am vouchsafed,
By me the promised Seed shall all restore.”

So spake our mother Eve; and Adam heard,
Well pleased, but answer'd not; for now, too nigh
The archangel stood ; and from the other hill
To their fix'd station, all in bright array,
The cherubim descended, on the ground
Gliding meteorous, as evening mist,
Risen from a river, o'er the marish glides,
And gathers ground fast at the labourer's heel,
Homeward returning. High in front advanced,
The brandish'd sword of God before them blazed,
Fierce as a comet; which, with torrid heat,
And vapour as the Lybian air adust,
Began to parch that temperate clime; whereat
In either hand the hastening angel caught
Our lingering parents, and to the eastern gate

3c

VOL. 1.

Led them direct, and down the cliff as fast
To the subjected plain ; then disappear'd.
They, looking back, all the eastern side beheld
Of Paradise, so late their happy seat,
Waved over by that flaming brand ; the gate
With dreadful faces throng'd, and fiery arms.
Some natural tears they dropt, but wiped them soon ;
The world was all before them, where to choose
Their place of rest, and Providence their guide :
They, hand in hand, with wandering steps and slow,
Through Eden took their solitary way.

[graphic][merged small][merged small]

Uniform with this Edition of “ Milton's POETICAL WORKS."

COWPER’S

POETICAL

WORKS:

WITH A BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL INTRODUCTION, BY

THE REV. THOMAS DALE;

AND SEVENTY-FIVE ILLUSTRATIONS, ENGRAVED BY J. 0. SMITH,

FROM DRAWINGS BY JOHN GILBERT.

Two Volumes, 24s.

THOMSON'S SEASONS,

AXD

CASTLE OF INDOLENCE:

WITH

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL INTRODUCTION,

BY ALLAN CUNNINGHAM;

AND FORTY-EIGHT ILLUSTRATIONS, DRAWN AND ENGRAVED

BY SAMUEL WILLIAMS.

One Volume, 12s.

OTHER WORKS, IN CONTINUATION OF THE SERIES, ARE IN

PREPARATION.

« EelmineJätka »