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Their highest heaven; or on the Delphian
cliff, Or in Dodona, and through all the bounds Of Doric land; or who with Saturn old Fled over Adria36 to the Hesperian37 fields, 520 And o'er the Celtic roam'd the utmost Isles. All these and more came flocking; but with
looks Downcast and damp; yet such wherein ap
peared Obscure some glimpse of joy, to have found
their Chief Not in despair, to have found themselves not lost
525 In loss itself; which on his countenance cast Like doubtful hue. But he, his wonted pride Soon recollecting, with high words, that bore Semblance of worth, not substance, gently
raised Their fainting courage, and dispelled their fears:
530 Then straight commands that, at the warlike
sound Of trumpets loud and clarions, be upreared His mighty standard: that proud honour
claimed Azazel as his right, a Cherub tall: Who forthwith from the glittering staff un
furled Th’imperial ensign; which, full high advanced, Shone like a meteor streaming to the wind, With gems and golden lustre rich emblazed, Seraphic arms and trophies; all the while Sonorous metal blowing martial sounds: 540 At which the universal host up-sent A shout, that tore Hell's concave, and beyond Frighted the reign of Chaos and old Night. All in a moment through the gloom were seen Ten thousand banners rise into the air, With orient colours waving: with them rose A forest huge of spears; and thronging helms Appeared, and serried shields in thick array of depth immeasureable. Anon they move In perfect phalanx to the Dorian mood38 Od lutes and soft recorders, 39——such as raised To height of noblest temper, heroes old Arming to battle, and instead of rage Deliberate valour breathed, firm and un
moved With dread of death to flight or foul retreat; 555 Nor wanting power to mitigate and swage With solemn touches troubled thoughts, and
chase Anguish and doubt and fear and sorrow and
pain From mortal or immortal minds. Thus they, Breathing united force, with fixed thought, 560 Moved on in silence to soft pipes, that charmed
Their painful steps o'er the burnt soil. And Advanced in view they stand-a horrid front Of dreadful length and dazzling arms, in guise Of warriors old, with ordered spear and shield, Awaiting what command their mighty Chief 566 Had to impose. He through the armed files Darts his experienced eye, and soon traverse The whole battalion views,--their order due, Their visages and stature as of gods; 570 Their number last he sums. And now his
heart Distends with pride, and, hardening in his
strength, Glories: for never since created Man Met such embodied force as, named with these, Could merit more than that small infantry#0 575 Warred on by cranes--though all the giant
brood Of Phlegra'l with the heroic race were joined That fought at Thebes and llium, on each side Mixed with auxiliar gods; and what resounds In fable or romance of Uther's son, Begirt with British and Armoric knights; And all who since, baptized or infidel, Jousted in Aspramont, or Montalban, Damasco, or Morocco, or Trebisond, Or whom Biserta 43 sent from Afric shore 585 When Charlemain with all his peerage, fell By Fontarabbia. Thus far these beyond Compare of mortal prowess, yet observed Their dread Commander. He, above the rest In shape and gesture proudly eminent, Stood like a tower. His form had yet not lost All its original brightness, nor appeared Less than Archangel ruined, and the excess Of glory obscured: as when the sun new-risen, Looks through the horizontal misty air Shorn of his beams, or, from behind the moon, In dim eclipse, disastrous twilight sheds On half the nations, and with fear of change Perplexes monarchs. Darkened so, yet shone Above them all the Archangel: but his face 600 Deep scars of thunder had intrenched, and care Sat on his faded cheek, but under brows Of dauntless courage, and considerate pride Waiting revenge. Cruel his eye, but cast Signs of remorse and passion, to behold The fellows of his crime, the followers rather (Far other once beheld in bliss), condemned For ever now to have their lot in painMillions of Spirits for his fault amerced Of Heaven, and from eternal splendours flung For his revolt-yet faithful how they stood, all Their glory withered; as when Heaven's fire Hath scathed the forest oaks or mountain pines, With singèd top their stately growth, though
bare, Stands on the blasted heath. He now prepared
* The Adriatic Sea.
* Hesperian Western: here, the lands west of Greece.Italy, the Goldie lands of Gaul etc, as far as the British Isles.
3* in Dorian music the senle differed from that in use among the livilians and others, this distinctive scale for arrangement of tones and ball tones in the octave) was called the Dornal, i, ende, or system.
Doric munte nas invigorating and martialin character.
** A musical instrument resembling a tlagevlet.
4o Pygmies, a legendary nation of dwarfs, v. Iliad. įž., 41 The early name of a peninsula in Thrace, the scene of a conflict between the gods and the Titans, or "giant brood."
4: King Arthur. WA Saracen town on the Mediterranean coast of Africa.
To speak; whereat their double ranks they
bend From wing to wing, and half enclose him round With all his peers: attention held them mute. Thrice he assayed, and thrice, in spite of scorn, Tears, such as Angels weep, burst forth: at last Words interwove with sighs, found out their
way “O myriads of immortal Spirits! O Powers Matchless, but with the Almighty!—and that
strife Was not inglorious, though the event was dire, As this place testifies, and this dire change Hateful to utter. But what power of mind, 626 Foreseeing or presaging, from the depth Of knowledge past or present, could have
feared How such united force of gods, how such As stood like these, could ever know repulse? For who can yet believe, though after loss, That all these puissant legions, whose exile Hath emptied Heaven, shall fail to re-ascend, Self-raised, and re-possess their native seat? For me, be witness all the host of Heaven, If counsels different, or dangers shunned By me, have lost our hopes. But he who reigns Monarch in Heaven, till then as one secure Sat on his throne, upheld by old repute, Consent or custom, and his regal state Put forth at full, but still his strength con
cealed: Which tempted our attempt, and wrought our
fall. Henceforth his might we know, and know our
own, So as not either to provoke, or dread New war provoked; our better part remains 645 To work in close design, by fraud or guile, What force effected not; that he no less At length from us may find, Who overcomes By force hath overcome but half his foe. Space may produce new Worlds; whereof so rife There went a fame in Heaven that He ere long Intended to create, and therein plant A generation whom his choice regard Should favour equal to the Sons of Heaven; Thither, if but to pry, shall be perhaps 655 Our first eruption—thither or elsewhere: For this infernal pit shall never hold Celestial Spirits in bondage, nor the Abyss Long under darkness cover. But these thoughts Full counsel must mature. Peace is despaired; For who can think submission? War, then, Open or understood, must be resolved."
He spake: and, to confirm his words, out-flew Millions of flaming swords, drawn from the
thighs Of mighty Cherubim; the sudden blaze Far round illumined Hell. Highly they raged Against the Highest, and fierce with grasped Clashed on their sounding shields the din of
war, Hurling defiance toward the vault of Heaven.
There stood a hill not far, whose grisly top
Belched fire and rolling smoke; the rest entire
thoughts Were always downward bent, admiring more The riches of Heaven's pavement, trodden geld, Than aught divine or holy else enjoyed In vision beatific. By him first Men also, and by his suggestion taught, Ransacked the Centre, and with impious
hands Rifled the bowels of their mother earth For treasures better hid. Soon had his crew Opened into the hill a spacious wound, And digged out ribs of gold. Let none admire44 That riches grow in Hell; that soil may best 691 Deserve the precious bane. And here let those Who boast in mortal things, and wondering tell Of Babel, and the works of Memphian kings, Learn how their greatest monuments of fame, And strength, and art, are easily outdone By Spirits reprobate, and in an hour What in an age they, with incessant toil And hands innumerable, scarce perform. Nigh on the plain, in many cells prepared, That underneath had veins of liquid fire Sluiced from the lake, a second multitude With wondrous art founded the massy ore, Severing each kind, and scummed the bullion
dross; A third as soon had formed within the ground A various mould, and from the boiling cells 706 By strange conveyance filled each hollow nook: As in an organ, from one blast of wind, To many a row of pipes the sound-board
As from a sky. The hasty multitude
Beyond the Indian mount; or fairy elves, 781 Admiring entered; and the work some praise, Whose midnight revels, by a forest-side And some the architect. His hand was known Or fountain, some belated peasant sees, In Heaven by many a towered structure high, Or dreams he sees, while over-head the Moon Where sceptred Angels held their residence, Sits arbitress, and nearer to the Earth 785 And sat as Princes, whom the supreme King 735 Wheels her pale course; they, on their mirth and Exalted to such power, and gave to rule,
dance Each in his hierarchy, the Orders bright.
Intent, with jocund music charm his ear; Nor was his name unheard or unadored
At once with joy and fear his heart rebounds. In ancient Greece; and in the Ausonian land 45 Thus incorporeal Spirits to smallest forms Men called him Mulciber, 46 and how he fell Reduced their shapes immense, and were at From Heaven, they fabled, thrown by angry large, Jove
Though without number still, amidst the hall Sheer o'er the crystal battlements: from morn Of that infernal court. But far within, To noon he fell, from noon to dewy eve,
And in their own dimensions, like themselves, A summer's day, and with the setting sun
The great Seraphic Lords and Cherubim Dropt from the zenith, like a falling star,
In close recess and secret conclave sat, 795 On Lemnos, the Ægean isle. Thus they relate, A thousand demi-gods on golden seats, Erring; for he with this rebellious rout,
Frequent and full. After short silence then, Fell long before; nor aught availed him now And summons read, the great consult began. To have built in Heaven high towers; nor did he scape
From Book III By all his engines, but was headlong sent, With his industrious crew, to build in Hell. Hail, holy Light! offspring of Heaven first-born! Meanwhile, the wingèd Heralds, by com- Or of the Eternal coeternal beam mand
May I express thee unblamed? since God is Of sovereign power, with awful ceremony
light, And trumpet's sound, throughout the host And never but in unapproached light proclaim
Dwelt from eternity-dwelt then in thee, A solemn council forthwith to be held
Bright effluence of bright essence increate! At Pandemonium,“ the high capital
Or hear'st thout rather pure Ethereal stream, Of Satan and his peers. Their summons called Whose fountain who shall tell? Before the Sun, From every band and squarèd regiment
Before the Heavens, thou wert, and at the voice By place or choice the worthiest: they anon Of God, as with a mantle, didst invest 10 With hundreds and with thousands trooping The rising World of waters dark and deep, came,
760 Won from the void and formless Infinite. Attended. All access was thronged; the gates Thee I revisit now with bolder wing, And porches wide, but chief the spacious hall Escaped the Stygian pool, though long de(Though like a covered field, where champions tained bold
In that obscure sojourn, while in my flight, Wont ride in armed, and at the Soldan's 48 Through utter and through middle Darkness chair,
16 Defied the best of Panim 49 chivalry
765 With other notes than to the Orphean lyre To mortal combat, or career with lance),
I sung of Chaos and eternal Night, Thick swarmed, both on the ground and in the Taught by the Heavenly Muse to venture down air
The dark descent, and up to re-ascend, Brushed with the hiss of rustling wings. As Though hard and rare. Thee I revisit safe, bees
And feel thy sovereign vital lamp; but thou In spring-time, when the Sun with Taurus Revisit'st not these eyes, that roll in vain rides,
To find thy piercing ray, and find no dawn; Pour forth their populous youth about the hive So thick a drop serene hath quenched their In clusters; they among fresh dews and flowers orbs. Fly to and fro, or on the smoothèd plank,
Or dim suffusion veiled. Yet not the more The suburb of their straw-built citadel,
Cease I to wander where the Muses haunt New rubbed with balm, expatiate and confer Clear spring, or shady grove, or sunny hill, Their state-affairs: so thick the airy crowd 775 Smit with the love of sacred song; but chief Swarmed and were straitened; till, the signal Thee, Sion, and the flowery brooks beneath, given,
That wash thy hallowed feet, and warbling flow,
Those other two equalled with me in fate,
46 The softener, i. e. Vulcan. 17 The abode of all the Demons, as the Pantheon is the lj. e. would you rather hear yourself called (do you abode of all the gods.
hear rather when you are called). ** Sultan.
43 Pagan. ? A legendary poet of Greece. 60 The ancients placed the Pygmies in India.
: Homer, reputed son of Maion.
And Tiresiasand Phineus' prophets old: Both harp and voice; nor could the Muse deThen feed on thoughts that voluntary move
fend Harmonious numbers; as the wakeful bird Her son. So fail not thou who thee implores; Sings darkling, and in shadiest covert hid, For thou art heavenly, she an empty dream. Tunes her nocturnal note. Thus with the year Seasons return; but not to me returns
From Book IX Day, or the sweet approach of even or morn, No more of talk where God or Angel Guest Or sight of vernal bloom, or summer's rose, With Man, as with his friend, familiar used Or flocks, or herds, or human face divine;
To sit indulgent, and with him partake But cloud instead and ever-during dark
Rural repast, permitting him the while Surrounds me, from the cheerful ways of men Venial discourse unblamed. I now must Cut off, and for the book of knowledge fair,
change Presented with a universal blank
Those notes to tragic-foul distrust, and breach Of Nature's works, to me expunged and rased, Disloyal, on the part of man, revolt And wisdom at one entrance quite shut out. 50 And disobedience; on the part of Heaven, So much the rather thou, Celestial Light,
Now alienated, distance and distaste, Shine inward, and the mind through all her Anger and just rebuke, and judgment given, 10 powers
That brought into this World a world of woe, Irradiate; there plant eyes; all mist from thence Sin and her shadow Death, and Misery, Purge and disperse, that I may see and tell Death's harbinger. Sad task! yet argument Of things invisible to mortal sight.
Not less but more heroic than the wrath
Of stern Achilles on his foe pursued
Thrice fugitive about Troy wall; or rage
If answerable style I can obtain
Her nightly visitation unimplored,
Wars, hitherto the only argument
Of patience and heroic martyrdom
Or tilting furniture, emblazoned shields,
Impresses quaint, caparisons and steeds, Erroneous there to wander and forlorn,
Bases and tinsel trappings, gorgeous knights Half yet remains unsung, but narrower bound At joust and tournament; then marshalled feast Within the visible Diurnal Sphere.
Served up in hall with sewers and semeshals:
Nor skilled nor studious, higher argument
Climate, or years, damp my intended wing
Depressed; and much they may if all be mine, Visit'st my slumbers nightly, or when Morn Not hers who brings it nightly to my ear. Purples the East. Still govern thou my song, 30 Urania, and fit audience find, though few, But drive far off the barbarous dissonance
Abraham Cowley Of Bacchus and his revellers, the race
1618-1667 Of that wild rout that tore the Thracian bard? In Rhodope, where woods and rocks had ears 35
THE WISH To rapture, till the savage clamour drowned
(From The Mistress, 1647) • Blind prophets in Greek legends.
Well then, I now do plainly see * Literally ("the heavenly one") one of the Muses in This busy world and I shall ne'er agree; Greek mythology but here the Divine inspiration, the "heavenly Muse" invoked at the beginning of the poem.
The very honey of all earthly joy * Orpheus. Cf. Lycidas, lines. 57-63.
Does, of all meats, the soonest cloy;
And they, methinks, deserve my pity
Of this great hive, the city!
And since Love ne'er will from me flee, A mistress moderately fair, And good as guardian-angels are,
Only beloved, and loving me!
Here's the spring-head of pleasure's flood!
Has coined and stamped for good.
scatter, And naught but echo flatter.
The gods when they descended hither
That 'tis the way too thither.
I should have then this only fear:
And so make a city here.
BREAD AND LIBERTY
(From Essay Of Liberty) the few hours of life allotted me, Give me (great God) but bread and liberty. I'll beg no more: if more thou’rt pleas'd to give, I'll thankfully that overplus receive: If beyond this no more be freely sent, I'll thank for this, and go away content.
THE GARDEN (Written c. 1650, published first in first col
lected edition of Marvell's Poems, 1981)
(From Miscellanies, 1650) Happy Insect, what can be In happiness compar'd to thee? Fed with nourishment divine, The dewy morning's gentle wine! Nature waits upon thee still, And thy verdant cup does fill. 'Tis fill'd where ever thou dost tread, Nature selfe's thy Ganimed.' Thou dost drink, and dance, and sing; Happier than the happiest King! All the fields which thou dost see, All the plants belong to thee, All that summer hours produce, Fertile made with early juice. Man for thee does sow and plow; Farmer he and land-lord thou! Thou doest innocently joy; Nor does thy luxury destroy; The shepherd gladly heareth thee, More harmonious than he.
1 Ganymede, the cup-bearer of Zeus.