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Live, sweet lord, to be the honour of your name, and receive this as your own,
from the hands of him who hath by many favours been long obliged to your most
honoured parents, and as in this representation your attendant Thyrsis, so now in
The first scene discovers a mild wood. The Attendant Spirit descends or enters.]
ATTENDANT SPIRIT. Before the starry threshold of Jove's court My mansion is,
where those immortal shapes Of bright aerial spirits live insphered In regions
Their port was more than human, as t hoy stood ; I took it for a fairy vision Of some
gay creatures of the element, That in the colours of the rainbow live, And play i'
the plighted clouds. I was awe-struck, And, as I passed, I worshipped ; if those ...
... and yet despised ; And we should serve him as a grudging master, As a
penurious niggard of his wealth, And live like Nature's bastards, not her sous,
Who would be quite surcharged with her own weight, And strangled with her
waste fertility ...
With her abundance ; she, good cateress, Means her provision only to the good,
That live according to her sober laws, And holy dictate of spare Temperance : If
every just man, that now pines with want. Had but a moderate and beseeming ...
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I much prefer John Kinsella's updated version 'A Dialogic Mask' which, rather engagingly, includes John Milton's original in a beautifully produced hardback. Comus is available from Arc Publications.