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Now Morn her rosie steps in th' Eastern Clime 
Advancing, sow'd the Earth with Orient Pearle, 
When ADAM wak't, so customd, for his sleep 
Was Aerie light, from pure digestion bred, 
And temperat vapors bland, which th' only sound 
Of leaves and fuming rills, AURORA's fan, 
Lightly dispers'd, and the shrill Matin Song 
Of Birds on every bough; so much the more 
His wonder was to find unwak'nd EVE 
With Tresses discompos'd, and glowing Cheek, 
As through unquiet rest: he on his side 
Leaning half-rais'd, with looks of cordial Love 
Hung over her enamour'd, and beheld 
Beautie, which whether waking or asleep, 
Shot forth peculiar Graces; then with voice 
Milde, as when ZEPHYRUS on FLORA breathes, 
Her hand soft touching, whisperd thus.  Awake 
My fairest, my espous'd, my latest found, 
Heav'ns last best gift, my ever new delight, 
Awake, the morning shines, and the fresh field 
Calls us, we lose the prime, to mark how spring 
Our tended Plants, how blows the Citron Grove, 
What drops the Myrrhe, & what the balmie Reed, 
How Nature paints her colours, how the Bee 
Sits on the Bloom extracting liquid sweet. 
  Such whispering wak'd her, but with startl'd eye 
On ADAM, whom imbracing, thus she spake. 
  O Sole in whom my thoughts find all repose, 
My Glorie, my Perfection, glad I see 
Thy face, and Morn return'd, for I this Night, 
Such night till this I never pass'd, have dream'd, 
If dream'd, not as I oft am wont, of thee, 
Works of day pass't, or morrows next designe, 
But of offence and trouble, which my mind 
Knew never till this irksom night; methought 
Close at mine ear one call'd me forth to walk 
With gentle voice, I thought it thine; it said, 
Why sleepst thou EVE? now is the pleasant time, 
The cool, the silent, save where silence yields 
To the night-warbling Bird, that now awake 
Tunes sweetest his love-labor'd song; now reignes 
Full Orb'd the Moon, and with more pleasing light 
Shadowie sets off the face of things; in vain, 
If none regard; Heav'n wakes with all his eyes, 
Whom to behold but thee, Natures desire, 
In whose sight all things joy, with ravishment 
Attracted by thy beauty still to gaze. 
I rose as at thy call, but found thee not; 
To find thee I directed then my walk; 
And on, methought, alone I pass'd through ways 
That brought me on a sudden to the Tree 
Of interdicted Knowledge: fair it seem'd, 
Much fairer to my Fancie then by day: 
And as I wondring lookt, beside it stood 
One shap'd & wing'd like one of those from Heav'n 
By us oft seen; his dewie locks distill'd 
Ambrosia; on that Tree he also gaz'd; 
And O fair Plant, said he, with fruit surcharg'd, 
Deigns none to ease thy load and taste thy sweet, 
Nor God, nor Man; is Knowledge so despis'd? 
Or envie, or what reserve forbids to taste? 
Forbid who will, none shall from me withhold 
Longer thy offerd good, why else set here? 
This said he paus'd not, but with ventrous Arme 
He pluckt, he tasted; mee damp horror chil'd 
At such bold words voucht with a deed so bold: 
But he thus overjoy'd, O Fruit Divine, 
Sweet of thy self, but much more sweet thus cropt, 
Forbidd'n here, it seems, as onely fit 
For Gods, yet able to make Gods of Men: 
And why not Gods of Men, since good, the more 
Communicated, more abundant growes, 
The Author not impair'd, but honourd more? 
Here, happie Creature, fair Angelic EVE, 
Partake thou also; happie though thou art, 
Happier thou mayst be, worthier canst not be: 
Taste this, and be henceforth among the Gods 
Thy self a Goddess, not to Earth confind, 
But somtimes in the Air, as wee, somtimes 
Ascend to Heav'n, by merit thine, and see 
What life the Gods live there, and such live thou. 
So saying, he drew nigh, and to me held, 
Even to my mouth of that same fruit held part 
Which he had pluckt; the pleasant savourie smell 
So quick'nd appetite, that I, methought, 
Could not but taste.  Forthwith up to the Clouds 
With him I flew, and underneath beheld 
The Earth outstretcht immense, a prospect wide 
And various: wondring at my flight and change 
To this high exaltation; suddenly 
My Guide was gon, and I, me thought, sunk down, 
And fell asleep; but O how glad I wak'd 
To find this but a dream!  Thus EVE her Night 
Related, and thus ADAM answerd sad. 
  Best Image of my self and dearer half, 
The trouble of thy thoughts this night in sleep 
Affects me equally; nor can I like 
This uncouth dream, of evil sprung I fear; 
Yet evil whence? in thee can harbour none, 
Created pure.  But know that in the Soule 
Are many lesser Faculties that serve 
Reason as chief; among these Fansie next 
Her office holds; of all external things, 
Which the five watchful Senses represent, 
She forms Imaginations, Aerie shapes, 
Which Reason joyning or disjoyning, frames 
All what we affirm or what deny, and call 
Our knowledge or opinion; then retires 
Into her private Cell when Nature rests. 
Oft in her absence mimic Fansie wakes 
To imitate her; but misjoyning shapes, 
Wilde work produces oft, and most in dreams, 
Ill matching words and deeds long past or late. 
Som such resemblances methinks I find 
Of our last Eevnings talk, in this thy dream, 
But with addition strange; yet be not sad. 
Evil into the mind of God or Man 
May come and go, so unapprov'd, and leave 
No spot or blame behind: Which gives me hope 
That what in sleep thou didst abhorr to dream, 
Waking thou never wilt consent to do. 
Be not disheart'nd then, nor cloud those looks 
That wont to be more chearful and serene 
Then when fair Morning first smiles on the World, 
And let us to our fresh imployments rise 
Among the Groves, the Fountains, and the Flours 
That open now thir choicest bosom'd smells 
Reservd from night, and kept for thee in store. 
  So cheard he his fair Spouse, and she was cheard, 
But silently a gentle tear let fall 
From either eye, and wip'd them with her haire; 
Two other precious drops that ready stood, 
Each in thir chrystal sluce, hee ere they fell 
Kiss'd as the gracious signs of sweet remorse 
And pious awe, that feard to have offended. 
  So all was cleard, and to the Field they haste. 
But first from under shadie arborous roof, 
Soon as they forth were come to open sight 
Of day-spring, and the Sun, who scarce up risen 
With wheels yet hov'ring o're the Ocean brim, 
Shot paralel to the earth his dewie ray, 
Discovering in wide Lantskip all the East 
Of Paradise and EDENS happie Plains, 
Lowly they bow'd adoring, and began 
Thir Orisons, each Morning duly paid 
In various style, for neither various style 
Nor holy rapture wanted they to praise 
Thir Maker, in fit strains pronounc't or sung 
Unmeditated, such prompt eloquence 
Flowd from thir lips, in Prose or numerous Verse, 
More tuneable then needed Lute or Harp 
To add more sweetness, and they thus began. 
  These are thy glorious works, Parent of good, 
Almightie, thine this universal Frame, 
Thus wondrous fair; thy self how wondrous then! 
Unspeakable, who sitst above these Heavens 
To us invisible or dimly seen 
In these thy lowest works, yet these declare 
Thy goodness beyond thought, and Power Divine: 
Speak yee who best can tell, ye Sons of light, 
Angels, for yee behold him, and with songs 
And choral symphonies, Day without Night, 
Circle his Throne rejoycing, yee in Heav'n, 
On Earth joyn all yee Creatures to extoll 
Him first, him last, him midst, and without end. 
Fairest of Starrs, last in the train of Night, 
If better thou belong not to the dawn, 
Sure pledge of day, that crownst the smiling Morn 
With thy bright Circlet, praise him in thy Spheare 
While day arises, that sweet hour of Prime. 
Thou Sun, of this great World both Eye and Soule, 
Acknowledge him thy Greater, sound his praise 
In thy eternal course, both when thou climb'st, 
And when high Noon hast gaind, & when thou fallst. 
Moon, that now meetst the orient Sun, now fli'st 
With the fixt Starrs, fixt in thir Orb that flies, 
And yee five other wandring Fires that move 
In mystic Dance not without Song, resound 
His praise, who out of Darkness call'd up Light. 
Aire, and ye Elements the eldest birth 
Of Natures Womb, that in quaternion run 
Perpetual Circle, multiform; and mix 
And nourish all things, let your ceasless change 
Varie to our great Maker still new praise. 
Ye Mists and Exhalations that now rise 
From Hill or steaming Lake, duskie or grey, 
Till the Sun paint your fleecie skirts with Gold, 
In honour to the Worlds great Author rise, 
Whether to deck with Clouds the uncolourd skie, 
Or wet the thirstie Earth with falling showers, 
Rising or falling still advance his praise. 
His praise ye Winds, that from four Quarters blow, 
Breath soft or loud; and wave your tops, ye Pines, 
With every Plant, in sign of Worship wave. 
Fountains and yee, that warble, as ye flow, 
Melodious murmurs, warbling tune his praise. 
Joyn voices all ye living Souls, ye Birds, 
That singing up to Heaven Gate ascend, 
Bear on your wings and in your notes his praise; 
Yee that in Waters glide, and yee that walk 
The Earth, and stately tread, or lowly creep; 
Witness if I be silent, Morn or Eeven, 
To Hill, or Valley, Fountain, or fresh shade 
Made vocal by my Song, and taught his praise. 
Hail universal Lord, be bounteous still 
To give us onely good; and if the night 
Have gathered aught of evil or conceald, 
Disperse it, as now light dispels the dark. 
  So pray'd they innocent, and to thir thoughts 
Firm peace recoverd soon and wonted calm. 
On to thir mornings rural work they haste 
Among sweet dewes and flours; where any row 
Of Fruit-trees overwoodie reachd too farr 
Thir pamperd boughes, and needed hands to check 
Fruitless imbraces: or they led the Vine 
To wed her Elm; she spous'd about him twines 
Her mariageable arms, and with her brings 
Her dowr th' adopted Clusters, to adorn 
His barren leaves.  Them thus imploid beheld 
With pittie Heav'ns high King, and to him call'd 
RAPHAEL, the sociable Spirit, that deign'd 
To travel with TOBIAS, and secur'd 
His marriage with the seaventimes-wedded Maid. 
  RAPHAEL, said hee, thou hear'st what stir on Earth 
SATAN from Hell scap't through the darksom Gulf 
Hath raisd in Paradise, and how disturbd 
This night the human pair, how he designes 
In them at once to ruin all mankind. 
Go therefore, half this day as friend with friend 
Converse with ADAM, in what Bowre or shade 
Thou find'st him from the heat of Noon retir'd, 
To respit his day-labour with repast, 
Or with repose; and such discourse bring on, 
As may advise him of his happie state, 
Happiness in his power left free to will, 
Left to his own free Will, his Will though free, 
Yet mutable; whence warne him to beware 
He swerve not too secure: tell him withall 
His danger, and from whom, what enemie 
Late falln himself from Heav'n, is plotting now 
The fall of others from like state of bliss; 
By violence, no, for that shall be withstood, 
But by deceit and lies; this let him know, 
Least wilfully transgressing he pretend 
Surprisal, unadmonisht, unforewarnd. 
  So spake th' Eternal Father, and fulfilld 
All Justice: nor delaid the winged Saint 
After his charge receivd, but from among 
Thousand Celestial Ardors, where he stood 
Vaild with his gorgeous wings, up springing light 
Flew through the midst of Heav'n; th' angelic Quires 
On each hand parting, to his speed gave way 
Through all th' Empyreal road; till at the Gate 
Of Heav'n arriv'd, the gate self-opend wide 
On golden Hinges turning, as by work 
Divine the sov'ran Architect had fram'd. 
From hence, no cloud, or, to obstruct his sight, 
Starr interpos'd, however small he sees, 
Not unconform to other shining Globes, 
Earth and the Gard'n of God, with Cedars crownd 
Above all Hills.  As when by night the Glass 
Of GALILEO, less assur'd, observes 
Imagind Lands and Regions in the Moon: 
Or Pilot from amidst the CYCLADES 
DELOS or SAMOS first appeering kenns 
A cloudy spot.  Down thither prone in flight 
He speeds, and through the vast Ethereal Skie 
Sailes between worlds & worlds, with steddie wing 
Now on the polar windes, then with quick Fann 
Winnows the buxom Air; till within soare 
Of Towring Eagles, to all the Fowles he seems 
A PHOENIX, gaz'd by all, as that sole Bird 
When to enshrine his reliques in the Sun's 
Bright Temple, to AEGYPTIAN THEB'S he flies. 
At once on th' Eastern cliff of Paradise 
He lights, and to his proper shape returns 
A Seraph wingd; six wings he wore, to shade 
His lineaments Divine; the pair that clad 
Each shoulder broad, came mantling o're his brest 
With regal Ornament; the middle pair 
Girt like a Starrie Zone his waste, and round 
Skirted his loines and thighes with downie Gold 
And colours dipt in Heav'n; the third his feet 
Shaddowd from either heele with featherd maile 
Skie-tinctur'd grain.  Like MAIA'S son he stood, 
And shook his Plumes, that Heav'nly fragrance filld 
The circuit wide.  Strait knew him all the bands 
Of Angels under watch; and to his state, 
And to his message high in honour rise; 
For on som message high they guessd him bound. 
Thir glittering Tents he passd, and now is come 
Into the blissful field, through Groves of Myrrhe, 
And flouring Odours, Cassia, Nard, and Balme; 
A Wilderness of sweets; for Nature here 
Wantond as in her prime, and plaid at will 
Her Virgin Fancies, pouring forth more sweet, 
Wilde above rule or art; enormous bliss. 
Him through the spicie Forrest onward com 
ADAM discernd, as in the dore he sat 
Of his coole Bowre, while now the mounted Sun 
Shot down direct his fervid Raies, to warme 
Earths inmost womb, more warmth then ADAM need; 
And EVE within, due at her hour prepar'd 
For dinner savourie fruits, of taste to please 
True appetite, and not disrelish thirst 
Of nectarous draughts between, from milkie stream, 
Berrie or Grape: to whom thus ADAM call'd. 
  Haste hither EVE, and worth thy sight behold 
Eastward among those Trees, what glorious shape 
Comes this way moving; seems another Morn 
Ris'n on mid-noon; som great behest from Heav'n 
To us perhaps he brings, and will voutsafe 
This day to be our Guest.  But goe with speed, 
And what thy stores contain, bring forth and poure 
Abundance, fit to honour and receive 
Our Heav'nly stranger; well we may afford 
Our givers thir own gifts, and large bestow 
From large bestowd, where Nature multiplies 
Her fertil growth, and by disburd'ning grows 
More fruitful, which instructs us not to spare. 
  To whom thus EVE. ADAM, earths hallowd mould, 
Of God inspir'd, small store will serve, where store, 
All seasons, ripe for use hangs on the stalk; 
Save what by frugal storing firmness gains 
To nourish, and superfluous moist consumes: 
But I will haste and from each bough and break, 
Each Plant & juciest Gourd will pluck such choice 
To entertain our Angel guest, as hee 
Beholding shall confess that here on Earth 
God hath dispenst his bounties as in Heav'n. 
  So saying, with dispatchful looks in haste 
She turns, on hospitable thoughts intent 
What choice to chuse for delicacie best, 
What order, so contriv'd as not to mix 
Tastes, not well joynd, inelegant, but bring 
Taste after taste upheld with kindliest change, 
Bestirs her then, and from each tender stalk 
Whatever Earth all-bearing Mother yeilds 
In INDIA East or West, or middle shoare 
In PONTUS or the PUNIC Coast, or where 
ALCINOUS reign'd, fruit of all kindes, in coate, 
Rough, or smooth rin'd, or bearded husk, or shell 
She gathers, Tribute large, and on the board 
Heaps with unsparing hand; for drink the Grape 
She crushes, inoffensive moust, and meathes 
From many a berrie, and from sweet kernels prest 
She tempers dulcet creams, nor these to hold 
Wants her fit vessels pure, then strews the ground 
With Rose and Odours from the shrub unfum'd. 
Mean while our Primitive great Sire, to meet 
His god-like Guest, walks forth, without more train 
Accompani'd then with his own compleat 
Perfections, in himself was all his state, 
More solemn then the tedious pomp that waits 
On Princes, when thir rich Retinue long 
Of Horses led, and Grooms besmeard with Gold 
Dazles the croud, and sets them all agape. 
Neerer his presence ADAM though not awd, 
Yet with submiss approach and reverence meek, 
As to a superior Nature, bowing low, 
  Thus said.  Native of Heav'n, for other place 
None can then Heav'n such glorious shape contain; 
Since by descending from the Thrones above, 
Those happie places thou hast deignd a while 
To want, and honour these, voutsafe with us 
Two onely, who yet by sov'ran gift possess 
This spacious ground, in yonder shadie Bowre 
To rest, and what the Garden choicest bears 
To sit and taste, till this meridian heat 
Be over, and the Sun more coole decline. 
  Whom thus the Angelic Vertue answerd milde. 
ADAM, I therefore came, nor art thou such 
Created, or such place hast here to dwell, 
As may not oft invite, though Spirits of Heav'n 
To visit thee; lead on then where thy Bowre 
Oreshades; for these mid-hours, till Eevning rise 
I have at will.  So to the Silvan Lodge 
They came, that like POMONA'S Arbour smil'd 
With flourets deck't and fragrant smells; but EVE 
Undeckt, save with her self more lovely fair 
Then Wood-Nymph, or the fairest Goddess feign'd 
Of three that in Mount IDA naked strove, 
Stood to entertain her guest from Heav'n; no vaile 
Shee needed, Vertue-proof, no thought infirme 
Alterd her cheek.  On whom the Angel HAILE 
Bestowd, the holy salutation us'd 
Long after to blest MARIE, second EVE. 
  Haile Mother of Mankind, whose fruitful Womb 
Shall fill the World more numerous with thy Sons 
Then with these various fruits the Trees of God 
Have heap'd this Table.  Rais'd of grassie terf 
Thir Table was, and mossie seats had round, 
And on her ample Square from side to side 
All AUTUMN pil'd, though SPRING and AUTUMN here 
Danc'd hand in hand.  A while discourse they hold; 
No fear lest Dinner coole; when thus began 
Our Authour.  Heav'nly stranger, please to taste 
These bounties which our Nourisher, from whom 
All perfet good unmeasur'd out, descends, 
To us for food and for delight hath caus'd 
The Earth to yeild; unsavourie food perhaps 
To spiritual Natures; only this I know, 
That one Celestial Father gives to all. 
  To whom the Angel.  Therefore what he gives 
(Whose praise be ever sung) to man in part 
Spiritual, may of purest Spirits be found 
No ingrateful food: and food alike those pure 
Intelligential substances require 
As doth your Rational; and both contain 
Within them every lower facultie 
Of sense, whereby they hear, see, smell, touch, taste, 
Tasting concoct, digest, assimilate, 
And corporeal to incorporeal turn. 
For know, whatever was created, needs 
To be sustaind and fed; of Elements 
The grosser feeds the purer, earth the sea, 
Earth and the Sea feed Air, the Air those Fires 
Ethereal, and as lowest first the Moon; 
Whence in her visage round those spots, unpurg'd 
Vapours not yet into her substance turnd. 
Nor doth the Moon no nourishment exhale 
From her moist Continent to higher Orbes. 
The Sun that light imparts to all, receives 
From all his alimental recompence 
In humid exhalations, and at Even 
Sups with the Ocean: though in Heav'n the Trees 
Of life ambrosial frutage bear, and vines 
Yeild Nectar, though from off the boughs each Morn 
We brush mellifluous Dewes, and find the ground 
Cover'd with pearly grain: yet God hath here 
Varied his bounty so with new delights, 
As may compare with Heaven; and to taste 
Think not I shall be nice.  So down they sat, 
And to thir viands fell, nor seemingly 
The Angel, nor in mist, the common gloss 
Of Theologians, but with keen dispatch 
Of real hunger, and concoctive heate 
To transubstantiate; what redounds, transpires 
Through Spirits with ease; nor wonder; if by fire 
Of sooty coal the Empiric Alchimist 
Can turn, or holds it possible to turn 
Metals of drossiest Ore to perfet Gold 
As from the Mine.  Mean while at Table EVE 
Ministerd naked, and thir flowing cups 
With pleasant liquors crown'd: O innocence 
Deserving Paradise! if ever, then, 
Then had the Sons of God excuse to have bin 
Enamour'd at that sight; but in those hearts 
Love unlibidinous reign'd, nor jealousie 
Was understood, the injur'd Lovers Hell. 
  Thus when with meats & drinks they had suffic'd, 
Not burd'nd Nature, sudden mind arose 
In ADAM, not to let th' occasion pass 
Given him by this great Conference to know 
Of things above his World, and of thir being 
Who dwell in Heav'n, whose excellence he saw 
Transcend his own so farr, whose radiant forms 
Divine effulgence, whose high Power so far 
Exceeded human, and his wary speech 
Thus to th' Empyreal Minister he fram'd. 
  Inhabitant with God, now know I well 
Thy favour, in this honour done to man, 
Under whose lowly roof thou hast voutsaf't 
To enter, and these earthly fruits to taste, 
Food not of Angels, yet accepted so, 
As that more willingly thou couldst not seem 
At Heav'ns high feasts to have fed: yet what compare? 
   To whom the winged Hierarch repli'd. 
O ADAM, one Almightie is, from whom 
All things proceed, and up to him return, 
If not deprav'd from good, created all 
Such to perfection, one first matter all, 
Indu'd with various forms, various degrees 
Of substance, and in things that live, of life; 
But more refin'd, more spiritous, and pure, 
As neerer to him plac't or neerer tending 
Each in thir several active Sphears assignd, 
Till body up to spirit work, in bounds 
Proportiond to each kind.  So from the root 
Springs lighter the green stalk, from thence the leaves 
More aerie, last the bright consummate floure 
Spirits odorous breathes: flours and thir fruit 
Mans nourishment, by gradual scale sublim'd 
To vital Spirits aspire, to animal, 
To intellectual, give both life and sense, 
Fansie and understanding, whence the soule 
Reason receives, and reason is her being, 
Discursive, or Intuitive; discourse 
Is oftest yours, the latter most is ours, 
Differing but in degree, of kind the same. 
Wonder not then, what God for you saw good 
If I refuse not, but convert, as you, 
To proper substance; time may come when men 
With Angels may participate, and find 
No inconvenient Diet, nor too light Fare: 
And from these corporal nutriments perhaps 
Your bodies may at last turn all to Spirit 
Improv'd by tract of time, and wingd ascend 
Ethereal, as wee, or may at choice 
Here or in Heav'nly Paradises dwell; 
If ye be found obedient, and retain 
Unalterably firm his love entire 
Whose progenie you are.  Mean while enjoy 
Your fill what happiness this happie state 
Can comprehend, incapable of more. 
  To whom the Patriarch of mankind repli'd. 
O favourable spirit, propitious guest, 
Well hast thou taught the way that might direct 
Our knowledge, and the scale of Nature set 
From center to circumference, whereon 
In contemplation of created things 
By steps we may ascend to God.  But say, 
What meant that caution joind, IF YE BE FOUND 
OBEDIENT? can wee want obedience then 
To him, or possibly his love desert 
Who formd us from the dust, and plac'd us here 
Full to the utmost measure of what bliss 
Human desires can seek or apprehend? 
  To whom the Angel.  Son of Heav'n and Earth, 
Attend: That thou art happie, owe to God; 
That thou continu'st such, owe to thy self, 
That is, to thy obedience; therein stand. 
This was that caution giv'n thee; be advis'd. 
God made thee perfet, not immutable; 
And good he made thee, but to persevere 
He left it in thy power, ordaind thy will 
By nature free, not over-rul'd by Fate 
Inextricable, or strict necessity; 
Our voluntarie service he requires, 
Not our necessitated, such with him 
Findes no acceptance, nor can find, for how 
Can hearts, not free, be tri'd whether they serve 
Willing or no, who will but what they must 
By Destinie, and can no other choose? 
My self and all th' Angelic Host that stand 
In sight of God enthron'd, our happie state 
Hold, as you yours, while our obedience holds; 
On other surety none; freely we serve. 
Because wee freely love, as in our will 
To love or not; in this we stand or fall: 
And som are fall'n, to disobedience fall'n, 
And so from Heav'n to deepest Hell; O fall 
From what high state of bliss into what woe! 
  To whom our great Progenitor.  Thy words 
Attentive, and with more delighted eare 
Divine instructer, I have heard, then when 
Cherubic Songs by night from neighbouring Hills 
Aereal Music send: nor knew I not 
To be both will and deed created free; 
Yet that we never shall forget to love 
Our maker, and obey him whose command 
Single, is yet so just, my constant thoughts 
Assur'd me and still assure: though what thou tellst 
Hath past in Heav'n, som doubt within me move, 
But more desire to hear, if thou consent, 
The full relation, which must needs be strange, 
Worthy of Sacred silence to be heard; 
And we have yet large day, for scarce the Sun 
Hath finisht half his journey, and scarce begins 
His other half in the great Zone of Heav'n. 
  Thus ADAM made request, and RAPHAEL 
After short pause assenting, thus began. 
  High matter thou injoinst me, O prime of men, 
Sad task and hard, for how shall I relate 
To human sense th' invisible exploits 
Of warring Spirits; how without remorse 
The ruin of so many glorious once 
And perfet while they stood; how last unfould 
The secrets of another world, perhaps 
Not lawful to reveal? yet for thy good 
This is dispenc't, and what surmounts the reach 
Of human sense, I shall delineate so, 
By lik'ning spiritual to corporal forms, 
As may express them best, though what if Earth 
Be but the shaddow of Heav'n, and things therein 
Each to other like, more then on earth is thought? 
  As yet this world was not, and CHAOS wilde 
Reignd where these Heav'ns now rowl, where Earth now rests 
Upon her Center pois'd, when on a day 
(For Time, though in Eternitie, appli'd 
To motion, measures all things durable 
By present, past, and future) on such day 
As Heav'ns great Year brings forth, th' Empyreal Host 
Of Angels by Imperial summons call'd, 
Innumerable before th' Almighties Throne 
Forthwith from all the ends of Heav'n appeerd 
Under thir Hierarchs in orders bright 
Ten thousand thousand Ensignes high advanc'd, 
Standards, and Gonfalons twixt Van and Reare 
Streame in the Aire, and for distinction serve 
Of Hierarchies, of Orders, and Degrees; 
Or in thir glittering Tissues bear imblaz'd 
Holy Memorials, acts of Zeale and Love 
Recorded eminent.  Thus when in Orbes 
Of circuit inexpressible they stood, 
Orb within Orb, the Father infinite, 
By whom in bliss imbosom'd sat the Son, 
Amidst as from a flaming Mount, whoseop 
Brightness had made invisible, thus spake. 
  Hear all ye Angels, Progenie of Light, 
Thrones, Dominations, Princedoms, Vertues, Powers, 
Hear my Decree, which unrevok't shall stand. 
This day I have begot whom I declare 
My onely Son, and on this holy Hill 
Him have anointed, whom ye now behold 
At my right hand; your Head I him appoint; 
And by my Self have sworn to him shall bow 
All knees in Heav'n, and shall confess him Lord: 
Under his great Vice-gerent Reign abide 
United as one individual Soule 
For ever happie: him who disobeyes 
Mee disobeyes, breaks union, and that day 
Cast out from God and blessed vision, falls 
Into utter darkness, deep ingulft, his place 
Ordaind without redemption, without end. 
  So spake th' Omnipotent, and with his words 
All seemd well pleas'd, all seem'd, but were not all. 
That day, as other solem dayes, they spent 
In song and dance about the sacred Hill, 
Mystical dance, which yonder starrie Spheare 
Of Planets and of fixt in all her Wheeles 
Resembles nearest, mazes intricate, 
Eccentric, intervolv'd, yet regular 
Then most, when most irregular they seem: 
And in thir motions harmonie Divine 
So smooths her charming tones, that Gods own ear 
Listens delighted.  Eevning approachd 
(For we have also our Eevning and our Morn, 
We ours for change delectable, not need) 
Forthwith from dance to sweet repast they turn 
Desirous, all in Circles as they stood, 
Tables are set, and on a sudden pil'd 
With Angels Food, and rubied Nectar flows: 
In Pearl, in Diamond, and massie Gold, 
Fruit of delicious Vines, the growth of Heav'n. 
They eat, they drink, and with refection sweet 
Are fill'd, before th' all bounteous King, who showrd 
With copious hand, rejoycing in thir joy. 
Now when ambrosial Night with Clouds exhal'd 
From that high mount of God, whence light & shade 
Spring both, the face of brightest Heav'n had changd 
To grateful Twilight (for Night comes not there 
In darker veile) and roseat Dews dispos'd 
All but the unsleeping eyes of God to rest, 
Wide over all the Plain, and wider farr 
Then all this globous Earth in Plain outspred, 
(Such are the Courts of God) Th' Angelic throng 
Disperst in Bands and Files thir Camp extend 
By living Streams among the Trees of Life, 
Pavilions numberless, and sudden reard, 
Celestial Tabernacles, where they slept 
Fannd with coole Winds, save those who in thir course 
Melodious Hymns about the sovran Throne 
Alternate all night long: but not so wak'd 
SATAN, so call him now, his former name 
Is heard no more Heav'n; he of the first, 
If not the first Arch-Angel, great in Power, 
In favour and praeeminence, yet fraught 
With envie against the Son of God, that day 
Honourd by his great Father, and proclaimd 
MESSIAH King anointed, could not beare 
Through pride that sight, and thought himself impaird. 
Deep malice thence conceiving & disdain, 
Soon as midnight brought on the duskie houre 
Friendliest to sleep and silence, he resolv'd 
With all his Legions to dislodge, and leave 
Unworshipt, unobey'd the Throne supream 
Contemptuous, and his next subordinate 
Awak'ning, thus to him in secret spake. 
  Sleepst thou Companion dear, what sleep can close 
Thy eye-lids? and remembrest what Decree 
Of yesterday, so late hath past the lips 
Of Heav'ns Almightie.  Thou to me thy thoughts 
Wast wont, I mine to thee was wont to impart; 
Both waking we were one; how then can now 
Thy sleep dissent? new Laws thou seest impos'd; 
New Laws from him who reigns, new minds may raise 
In us who serve, new Counsels, to debate 
What doubtful may ensue, more in this place 
To utter is not safe.  Assemble thou 
Of all those Myriads which we lead the chief; 
Tell them that by command, ere yet dim Night 
Her shadowie Cloud withdraws, I am to haste, 
And all who under me thir Banners wave, 
Homeward with flying march where we possess 
The Quarters of the North, there to prepare 
Fit entertainment to receive our King 
The great MESSIAH, and his new commands, 
Who speedily through all the Hierarchies 
Intends to pass triumphant, and give Laws. 
  So spake the false Arch-Angel, and infus'd 
Bad influence into th' unwarie brest 
Of his Associate; hee together calls, 
Or several one by one, the Regent Powers, 
Under him Regent, tells, as he was taught, 
That the most High commanding, now ere Night, 
Now ere dim Night had disincumberd Heav'n, 
The great Hierarchal Standard was to move; 
Tells the suggested cause, and casts between 
Ambiguous words and jealousies, to sound 
Or taint integritie; but all obey'd 
The wonted signal, and superior voice 
Of thir great Potentate; for great indeed 
His name, and high was his degree in Heav'n; 
His count'nance, as the Morning Starr that guides 
The starrie flock, allur'd them, and with lyes 
Drew after him the third part of Heav'ns Host: 
Mean while th' Eternal eye, whose sight discernes 
Abstrusest thoughts, from forth his holy Mount 
And from within the golden Lamps that burne 
Nightly before him, saw without thir light 
Rebellion rising, saw in whom, how spred 
Among the sons of Morn, what multitudes 
Were banded to oppose his high Decree; 
And smiling to his onely Son thus said. 
  Son, thou in whom my glory I behold 
In full resplendence, Heir of all my might, 
Neerly it now concernes us to be sure 
Of our Omnipotence, and with what Arms 
We mean to hold what anciently we claim 
Of Deitie or Empire, such a foe 
Is rising, who intends to erect his Throne 
Equal to ours, throughout the spacious North; 
Nor so content, hath in his thought to trie 
In battel, what our Power is, or our right. 
Let us advise, and to this hazard draw 
With speed what force is left, and all imploy 
In our defence, lest unawares we lose 
This our high place, our Sanctuarie, our Hill. 
  To whom the Son with calm aspect and cleer 
Light'ning Divine, ineffable, serene, 
Made answer.  Mightie Father, thou thy foes 
Justly hast in derision, and secure 
Laugh'st at thir vain designes and tumults vain, 
Matter to mee of Glory, whom thir hate 
Illustrates, when they see all Regal Power 
Giv'n me to quell thir pride, and in event 
Know whether I be dextrous to subdue 
Thy Rebels, or be found the worst in Heav'n. 
  So spake the Son, but SATAN with his Powers 
Farr was advanc't on winged speed, an Host 
Innumerable as the Starrs of Night, 
Or Starrs of Morning, Dew-drops, which the Sun 
Impearls on every leaf and every flouer. 
Regions they pass'd, the mightie Regencies 
Of Seraphim and Potentates and Thrones 
In thir triple Degrees, Regions to which 
All thy Dominion, ADAM, is no more 
Then what this Garden is to all the Earth, 
And all the Sea, from one entire globose 
Stretcht into Longitude; which having pass'd 
At length into the limits of the North 
They came, and SATAN to his Royal seat 
High on a Hill, far blazing, as a Mount 
Rais'd on a Mount, with Pyramids and Towrs 
From Diamond Quarries hew'n, & Rocks of Gold, 
The Palace of great LUCIFER, (so call 
That Structure in the Dialect of men 
Interpreted) which not long after, hee 
Affecting all equality with God, 
In imitation of that Mount whereon 
MESSIAH was declar'd in sight of Heav'n, 
The Mountain of the Congregation call'd; 
For thither he assembl'd all his Train, 
Pretending so commanded to consult 
About the great reception of thir King, 
Thither to come, and with calumnious Art 
Of counterfeted truth thus held thir ears. 
  Thrones, Dominations, Princedomes, Vertues, Powers, 
If these magnific Titles yet remain 
Not meerly titular, since by Decree 
Another now hath to himself ingross't 
All Power, and us eclipst under the name 
Of King anointed, for whom all this haste 
Of midnight march, and hurried meeting here, 
This onely to consult how we may best 
With what may be devis'd of honours new 
Receive him coming to receive from us 
Knee-tribute yet unpaid, prostration vile, 
Too much to one, but double how endur'd, 
To one and to his image now proclaim'd? 
But what if better counsels might erect 
Our minds and teach us to cast off this Yoke? 
Will ye submit your necks, and chuse to bend 
The supple knee? ye will not, if I trust 
To know ye right, or if ye know your selves 
Natives and Sons of Heav'n possest before 
By none, and if not equal all, yet free, 
Equally free; for Orders and Degrees 
Jarr not with liberty, but well consist. 
Who can in reason then or right assume 
Monarchie over such as live by right 
His equals, if in power and splendor less, 
In freedome equal? or can introduce 
Law and Edict on us, who without law 
Erre not, much less for this to be our Lord, 
And look for adoration to th' abuse 
Of those Imperial Titles which assert 
Our being ordain'd to govern, not to serve? 
  Thus farr his bold discourse without controule 
Had audience, when among the Seraphim 
ABDIEL, then whom none with more zeale ador'd 
The Deitie, and divine commands obei'd, 
Stood up, and in a flame of zeale severe 
The current of his fury thus oppos'd. 
  O argument blasphemous, false and proud! 
Words which no eare ever to hear in Heav'n 
Expected, least of all from thee, ingrate 
In place thy self so high above thy Peeres. 
Canst thou with impious obloquie condemne 
The just Decree of God, pronounc't and sworn, 
That to his only Son by right endu'd 
With Regal Scepter, every Soule in Heav'n 
Shall bend the knee, and in that honour due 
Confess him rightful King? unjust thou saist 
Flatly unjust, to binde with Laws the free, 
And equal over equals to let Reigne, 
One over all with unsucceeded power. 
Shalt thou give Law to God, shalt thou dispute 
With him the points of libertie, who made 
Thee what thou art, & formd the Pow'rs of Heav'n 
Such as he pleasd, and circumscrib'd thir being? 
Yet by experience taught we know how good, 
And of our good, and of our dignitie 
How provident he is, how farr from thought 
To make us less, bent rather to exalt 
Our happie state under one Head more neer 
United.  But to grant it thee unjust, 
That equal over equals Monarch Reigne: 
Thy self though great & glorious dost thou count, 
Or all Angelic Nature joind in one, 
Equal to him begotten Son, by whom 
As by his Word the mighty Father made 
All things, ev'n thee, and all the Spirits of Heav'n 
By him created in thir bright degrees, 
Crownd them with Glory, & to thir Glory nam'd 
Thrones, Dominations, Princedoms, Vertues, Powers 
Essential Powers, nor by his Reign obscur'd, 
But more illustrious made, since he the Head 
One of our number thus reduc't becomes, 
His Laws our Laws, all honour to him done 
Returns our own.  Cease then this impious rage, 
And tempt not these; but hast'n to appease 
Th' incensed Father, and th' incensed Son, 
While Pardon may be found in time besought. 
  So spake the fervent Angel, but his zeale 
None seconded, as out of season judg'd, 
Or singular and rash, whereat rejoic'd 
Th' Apostat, and more haughty thus repli'd. 
That we were formd then saist thou? & the work 
Of secondarie hands, by task transferd 
From Father to his Son? strange point and new! 
Doctrin which we would know whence learnt: who saw 
When this creation was? rememberst thou 
Thy making, while the Maker gave thee being? 
We know no time when we were not as now; 
Know none before us, self-begot, self-rais'd 
By our own quick'ning power, when fatal course 
Had circl'd his full Orbe, the birth mature 
Of this our native Heav'n, Ethereal Sons. 
Our puissance is our own, our own right hand 
Shall teach us highest deeds, by proof to try 
Who is our equal: then thou shalt behold 
Whether by supplication we intend 
Address, and to begirt th' Almighty Throne 
Beseeching or besieging.  This report, 
These tidings carrie to th' anointed King; 
And fly, ere evil intercept thy flight. 
  He said, and as the sound of waters deep 
Hoarce murmur echo'd to his words applause 
Through the infinite Host, nor less for that 
The flaming Seraph fearless, though alone 
Encompass'd round with foes, thus answerd bold. 
  O alienate from God, O spirit accurst, 
Forsak'n of all good; I see thy fall 
Determind, and thy hapless crew involv'd 
In this perfidious fraud, contagion spred 
Both of thy crime and punishment: henceforth 
No more be troubl'd how to quit the yoke 
Of Gods MESSIAH; those indulgent Laws 
Will not be now voutsaf't, other Decrees 
Against thee are gon forth without recall; 
That Golden Scepter which thou didst reject 
Is now an Iron Rod to bruise and breake 
Thy disobedience.  Well thou didst advise, 
Yet not for thy advise or threats I fly 
These wicked Tents devoted, least the wrauth 
Impendent, raging into sudden flame 
Distinguish not: for soon expect to feel 
His Thunder on thy head, devouring fire. 
Then who created thee lamenting learne, 
When who can uncreate thee thou shalt know. 
  So spake the Seraph ABDIEL faithful found, 
Among the faithless, faithful only hee; 
Among innumerable false, unmov'd, 
Unshak'n, unseduc'd, unterrifi'd 
His Loyaltie he kept, his Love, his Zeale; 
Nor number, nor example with him wrought 
To swerve from truth, or change his constant mind 
Though single.  From amidst them forth he passd, 
Long way through hostile scorn, which he susteind 
Superior, nor of violence fear'd aught; 
And with retorted scorn his back he turn'd 
On those proud Towrs to swift destruction doom'd. 

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