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With thee thy manhood also to this throne;
Here shalt thou sit incarnate, here shalt reign
Both God and Man, Son both of God and Man,
Anointed universal King. All power
I give thee; reign for ever, and assume
Thy merits; under thee, as head supreme",
Thrones, princedoms, powers, dominions, I reduce :
All knees to thee shall bow, of them that bide
In heaven, or earth, or under earth in hell.
When thou attended gloriously from heaven
Shalt in the sky appear, and from thee send
The summoning archangels to proclaim
Thy dread tribunal : forthwith from all winds
The living, and forth with the cited dead
Of all past ages, to the general doom
Shall hasten : such a peal shall rouse their sleep.
Then, all thy saints assembled, thou shalt judge
Bad men and angels; they arraign'd shall sink
Beneath thy sentence: hell, her numbers full,
Thenceforth shall be for ever shut. Meanwhile
The world shall burn, and from her ashes spring
New heaven and earth, wherein the just shall dwell,.
And after all their tribulations long
See golden days, fruitful of golden deeds,
With joy and love triumphing and fair truth :
Then thou thy regal sceptre shalt lay by,
For regal sceptre then no more shall reed;
God shall be all in all. But, all ye gods,
Adore him, who to compass all this dies ;
Adore the Son, and honour him as me.
No sooner had the Almighty ceased, but all
The multitude of angels with a shouto,
t Under thee, as head supreme.
Here the speech begins to swell into a considerable degrce of sublimity, and that of the purest and most perfect kind, in no way inconsistent with our most reverent ideas of the great Being who is the speaker, as he is portrayed to us in the Holy Scriptures. DUNSTER.
u With a shout. At this expression of angelic praise, it may be proper to give Addison's remarks unbroken upon the amazing colloquy which they had heard. The critic commences at ver. 56, and ends with ver. 415.
The survey of the whole creation, v. 56, and of everything that is transacted in it, is a prospect worthy of Omniscience; and as much above that in which Virgil has drawn Jupiter, as the christian idea of the Supreme Being is more rational and sublime than that of the heathens.
The particular objects on which he is described to have cast his eye are represented in the most beautiful and lively manner.
Satan's approach to the confines of the creation is finely inaged in the beginning of the speech which immediately follows. the Divine Person to whom it was addressed, cannot but fill the mind of the reader with
The effects of this speech in the blessed spirits, and in a secret pleasure and complacency.
I need not point out the beauty of the circumstance, wherein the whole host of angels are represented as standing mute; nor show how proper the occasion was to produce such a
Loud as from numlers without number, sweet
As from blest voices, uttering joy; heaven rung
With jubilee, and loud hosannas fill'd
The eternal regions. Lowly reverent
Towards either throne they bow, and to the ground .
With solemn adoration down they cast
Their crowns inwove with amarant and gold ;
Immortal amarant, a flower which once
In Paradise fast by the tree of life
Began to bloom ; but soon for man's offence
To heaven removed, where first it grew, there grows,
And flowers aloft shading the fount of life,
And where the river of bliss through midst of heaven
Rolls o'er Elysian flowers her amber stream;
With these, that never fade, the spirits elect
Bind their resplendent locks inwreathed with beams;
Now in loose garlands thick thrown off, the bright
Pavement, that like a sea of jasper shone,
Impurpled with celestial roses smiled.
Then crown'd again their golden harps they took,
Harps ever tuned, that glittering by their side
Like quivers hung, and with preamble sweet
Of charming symphony they introduce
Their sacred song, and waken raptures high ;
No voice exempt, no voice but well could join
Melodious part: such concord is in heaven.
Thee, Father, first they sung, Omnipotent,
Immutable, Immortal, Infinite,
Eternal King; thee, Authour of all being,
Fountain of light, thyself invisible
Amidst the glorious brightness where thou sitt'st
Throned inaccessible; but when thou shadest
The full blaze of thy beams, and through a cloud
Drawn round about thee like a radiant shrine,
Dark with excessive bright" thy skirts appear,
Yet dazzle heaven; that brightest seraphim
Approach not; but with both wings veil their eyes.
Thee next they sang of all creation first,
Begotten Son, Divine Similitude,
In whose conspicuous countenance without cloud
Made visible the Almighty Father shines,
Whom else no creature can behold: on thee
Impress’d the effulgence of his glory abides ;
silence in heaven. The close of this divine colloquy, and the hymn of angels which follows
trpion it, are wonderfully beautiful and poetical.— Addison.
Dark with excessive bright.
Gray has imitated this, speaking of Milton,-
Blasted with excess of light,
Closed his eyes in endless night.
Transfused on thee his ample Spirit rests.
He heaven of heavens and all the powers therein
By thee created, and by thee threw down
The aspiring dominations: thou that day
Thy Father's dreadful thunder didst not spare,
Nor stop thy flaming chariot-wheels that shook
Heaven's everlasting frame; while o'er the necks
Thou drovest of warring angels, disarray'd.
Back from pursuit thy powers with loud acclain
Thee only extoll’d, Son of thy Father's might,
To execute fierce vengeance on his foes;
Not so on man; him, through their malice fallen,
Father of mercy and grace, thou didst not doom
So strictly; but much more to pity incline.
No sooner did thy dear and only Son
Perceive thee purposed not to doom frail man
So strictly, but much more to pity inclined;
He, to appease thy wrath, and end the strife
Of mercy and justice in thy face discernd,
Regardless of the bliss wherein he sat
Second to thee, offer'd himself to die
For man's offence. O unexampled love,
Love no where to be found, less than Divine !
Hail, Son of God! Saviour of men! Thy name
Shall be the copious matter of my song
Henceforth; and never shall my harp thy praise
Forget, nor from thy Father's praise disjoin.
Thus they in heaven, above the starry sphere,
Their happy hours in joy and hymning spent.
Meanwhile upon the firm opacous globe
Of this round world, whose first convex divides,
The luminous inferiour orbs, inclosed
From Chaos and the inroad of Darkness old ;
Satan alighted walks ; a globe far off
It seem'd w, now seems a boundless continent,
Dark, waste, and wild, under the frown of night
Starless, exposed, and ever-threatening storms
Of Chaos blustering round, inclement sky;
Save on that side, which from the wall of heaven,
Though distant far, some small reflection gains
Of glimmering air, less vex'd with tempest loud :
Here walk'd the fiend at large in spacious field.
w A globe far off
It seem'd. Satan's walk upon the outside of the universe, which at a distance appeared to him of a globular form, but upon his nearer approach looked like an unbounded plain, is natural and noble; as his roaming upon the frontiers of the creation, between that mass of matter which was wrought into a world, and that shapeless unformed heap of materials which still lay in chaos and confusion, strikes the imagination with something astonishingly great and wild.-Addison.
As when a vulture * on Imaus bred,
Whose snowy ridge the roving Tartar bounds,
Dislodging from a region scarce of prey
To gorge the flesh of lambs, or yeanling kids
On hills where flocks are fed, flies toward the springs
Of Ganges or Hydaspes, Indian streams;
But in his way lights on the barren plains
Of Sericana, where Chineses drive
With sails and wind Y their cany waggons light:
So on this windy sea of land the fiend
Walk'd up and down alone, bent on his prey ;
Alone, for other creature in this place,
Living or lifeless, to be found was none;
None yet, but store hereafter from the earth
Up hither like aërial vapours flew
Of all things transitory and vain, when sin
With vanity had fill’d the works of men :
Both all things vain, and all who in vain things
Built their fond hopes of glory, or lasting fame,
Or happiness in this or the other life ;
All who have their reward on earth, the fruits
Of painful superstition and blind zeal,
Naught seeking but the praise of men, here find
Fit retribution, empty as their deeds :
All the unaccomplish'd works of nature's hand,
Abortive, monstrous, or unkindly mix'd,
Dissolved on earth, fleet hither, and in vain,
Till final dissolution wander here:
Not in the neighbouring moon, as some have dream'd;
Those argent fields more likely habitants,
Translated saints, or middle spirits hold
Betwixt the angelical and human kind :
Hither of ill-join'd sons, and daughters born?
This simile is very apposite and lively, and corresponds exactly in all the particulars. Satan coming from hell to earth, in order to destroy mankind, but lighting first on the bare convex of the world's outermost orb, “a sea of land," as the poct calls it, is very fitly compared to a vulture flying in quest of his prey, tender lambs or kids new-yeaned, from the barten rocks to the more fruitful hills and streams of India; but lighting in his way on the plains of Sericana, which were in a manner " a sea of land” too; the country being so stuooth and open, that carriages were driven (as travellers report) with sails and wind. Imaus is a celebrated mountain in Asia.–NEWTON.
y Chineses drive With sails and wind. Gray has caught the tone of this :
The dusky people drive before the gales.
2 Hither of ill-join'd sons. He means the sons of God ill-joined with the daughters of men, alluding to that text of Scripture, Gen. vi. 4 :-" There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that
, when the song of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to | them; the same became mighty men, which were of old, men of renown. Where, by the
First from the ancient world those giants came
With many a vain exploit, though then renown'd :
The builders next of Babel on the plain
Of Sennaar, and still with vain design
New Babels, had they wherewithal, would build :
Others came single ; he, who to be deem'd
A god, leap'd fondly into Ætna flames,
Empedocles, and he who, to enjoy
Plato's Elysium, leap'd into the sea,
Cleombrotus, and many more too long,
Embyros and idiots, eremites and friars,
White, black, and grey, with all their trumpery.
Here pilgrims roam, that stray'd so far to seek
In Golgotha him dead, who lives in heaven;
And they, who to be sure of Paradise a,
Dying put on the weeds of Dominic,
Or in Franciscan think to pass disguised ;
They pass the planets seven, and pass the fix'd,
And that crystalline sphere whose balance weighs
The trepidation talk'd, and that first moved :
And now Saint Peter at heaven's wicket seems
To wait them with his keys, and now at foot
Of heaven's ascent they lift their feet, when, lo !
A violent cross wind from either coast
Blows them transverse ten thousand leagues awry
Into the devious air : then might ye see
Cowls, hoods, and habits with their wearers toss'd
And flutter'd into rags; then reliques, beads,
Indulgences, dispenses, pardons, bulls,
The sport of winds : all these upwhirl’d aloft,
Fly o'er the backside of the world far off,
Into a limbo large and broad", since call'd
The Paradise of Fools, to few unknown
sons of God," some Fathers and commentators have understood angels, as if the angels had been enamoured and married to women: but the true meaning is, that the posterity of Seth and other patriarchs, who were worshippers of the true God, and therefore called "the sons of God,” intermarried with the idolatrous posterity of wicked Cain.-Newton.
# And they, who to be sure of Paradise. This verse, and the two following, allude to a ridiculous opinion that obtained in the dark ages of popery; that, at the time of death, to be clothed in a friar's habit, was an infallible road to heaven.-BowlE.
b And that crystalline sphere. He speaks here according to the ancient astronomy, adopted and improved by Ptolemy. NEWTON,
c Into a limbo large and broad. The limbus patrum, as it is called, is a place that the schoolmen supposed to be in the neighbourhood of hell, where the souls of the patriarchs were detained, and those good men who died before our Saviour's resurrection. Our author gives the same name to his “Paradise of Fools,” and more rationally places it beyond " the backside of the world."NEWTON,
The “ Limbo of Vanity” has been censured as unbecoming the dignity of the epic.