« PreviousContinue »
Changest thy count'nance, and thy hand with no regard Of highest favours past
685 From thee on them, or them to thee of service.
Nor only dost degrade them, or remit To life obscur'd, which were a fair dismission, But throw'st them lower than thou didstexalt them high, Unseenly falls in human eye,
690 Too grievous for the trespass or omission; Oft leav'st them to the hostile sword Of heathen and profane, their carcases To dogs and fowls a prey, or else captív’d; Or to th’ unjust tribunals, under change of times, 695
693. their carcases
this, I had the pleasure to find To dogs and fowls a prey,]
that I had fallen into the same Plainly alluding to Homer's Iliad, vein of thinking with Mr. Wari. 4.
burton: but he has opened and -αυτους δελωρια τουχι κυνισσιν pursued it much farther with
a penetration and liveliness of 695. Or to th' unjust tribunals, fancy peculiar to himself. under change of times, &c.] Here God of our fathers to ver. 704. no doubt Milton reflected upon is a bold expostulation with Prothe trials and sufferings of his vidence for the ill success of the party after the Restoration: and probably he might have in mind good old cause.
But such as thou hast solemnly particularly the case of Sir Harry
elected, Vane, whom he has so highly
With gifts and graces eminently celebrated in one of his sonnets. adorn'd If these they scape, perhaps in To some great work, thy glory. poverty &c; this was his own In these three lines are described case; he escaped with life, but the characters of the Heads of lived in poverty; and though he the Independent Enthusiasts, was always very sober and
--which in part they effect : perate, yet he was much afflicted with the gout and other painful That is, by the overthrow of the diseases in crude old age, cruda monarchy, without being able to senectus, when he was not yet a
raise their projected republic. very old man:
Yet toward these thus dignified, thou Though not disordinate, yet cause.
oft less suff'ring
Amidst their height of noon The punishment of dissolute days.
Changest thy count'nance Some time after I had written After Richard had laid down, all VOL. III.
And condemnation of th' ingrateful multitude.
power came into the hands of The trials and condemnation of the enthusiastic Independent Re- Vane and the Regicides. The publicans, when a sudden revo- concluding verses describe his lution, by the return of Charles own case, II. broke all their measures.
If these they scape, perhaps in pie with no regard
vertyOf highest favours past
Painful discases and deform'dFrom thee on them, or them to thee of Though not disordinate, yet causeless service.
sufl'ring That is, without any regard of
The punishment of dissolutc days: those favours shown by thee to His losses in the Excise, and his them in their wonderful successes gout not caused by intemperance. against tyranny and superstition But Milton was the most heated (Church and State), or of those enthusiast of his time; speaking services they paid to thee in of Charles the First's murder in declaring for religion and liberty his Defence of the People of [Independency and a Republic). England he says, Quanquam Nor only dost degrade gic,
ego hæc divino potius instinctu Too grievous for the trespass or omis.
gesta esse crediderim, quoties
memoria repeto &c. By the trespass of these precious 700. In crude old age;] Crude saints Milton means the quarrels old age in Virgil and in other among themselves: and by the writers is strong and robust, omission the not making a clear
--cruda Deo viridisque senectus. stage in the constitution, and new-modelling the law as well as But Milton uses crude here for national religion, as Ludlow ad- premature and coming before ils vised.
time, as cruda funera in Statius: captiv'd;
old age brought on by poverty Several were condemned to per- and by sickness, as Hesiod says petual imprisonment, as Lambert Egy. 93. and Martin.
Αιψα γαρ εν κακοτησι βροτι καταγή Or to th'unjust tribunals under change
novor. of times &c.
So deal not with this once thy glorious champion, 705 The image of thy strength, and mighty minister. What do I beg ? how hast thou dealt already? Behold him in this state calamitous, and turn His labours, for thou canst, to peaceful end.
But who is this, what thing of sea or land? 710 Female of sex it seems, That so bedeck’d, ornate, and gay, Comes this way sailing Like a stately ship Of Tarsus, bound for th’ isles
715 Of Javan or Gadire With all her bravery on, and tackle trim, Sails fill'd, and streamers waving, Courted by all the winds that hold them play, An amber scent of odorous perfume
in his Pæ
714. Like a slately ship &c.] Merry Wives of Windsor, act iii. The thought of comparing a sc. 8. speaking of the ship-tire, woman to a ship is not entirely says, “it was an open headnew. Plautus has
« dress, with a kind of scarf nulus, i. ii. 1. it
depending from behind. Its
“ name of ship-tire was, I preNegotii sibi qui volet vim parare, Navem et mulierem, hæc duo com
from its giving the parato.
wearer some resemblance of a Nam nullæ magis res duæ plus ne- ship (as Shakespeare says) in gotii « all her trim : with all her
penHabent, forte si occeperis ornare, &c.
out, and flags and Of Tarsus, there is frequent men- “ streamers flying. Thus Milton tion in Scripture of the ships of “in Samson Agonistes paints Tarshish, which Milton as well
« Dalila. This was an image as some commentators might con- “ familiar with the poets of that ceive to be the same as Tarsus “ time. Thus Beaumont and in Cilicia : bound for th' isles of “ Fletcher in their play of Wit Javan, that is Greece, for Javan « without Money-She spreads or Ion the fourth son of Japheth “ sattens as the king's ships do is said to have peopled Greece
canvas &c." and lonia: or Gadire, radeiça, 720. An amber scent of odorous Gades, Cadiz. Mr. Warburton perfume] Ambergris was now in his notes upon Shakespeare, in high repute for its fragrance.
Her harbinger, a damsel train behind;
CHORUS. Yet on she moves, now stands and eyes thee fix’d, About ť have spoke, but now, with head declin'd Like a fair flow'r surcharg'd with dew, she weeps, And words address'd seem into tears dissolv'd, Wetting the borders of her silken veil:
730 But now again she makes address to speak.
See Drayton, Polyolb. s. xx. vol. Mr. Jortin and Mr. Thyer both iv. p.
i042. and Borde's Dietarie concurred in the same observaof Health, ch. viii. ed. 1542. tion, and therefore it is more Compare Howell's Letters, (Let. likely to be true. dat. 1629.) vol. i. sect. 5.
729. And words address'd &c.] As 'mongst all flowres the rose ex.
This verse is printed imperfect cells,
in most of the editions, As amber 'mongst the fragrant'st
And words address'd seem tears dissmells.
solv'd, See also A Poem Royal, 1641. that being wanted which is in ibid. And Jonson's Cynth. Rev.
the first edition, a. V, S. 4. And in the Winter's Tale, a. iv. 8. 3.
And words address'd seem into tears
dissolu'd. -necklace-amber Perfume for a lady's chamber.
Mr. Jortin conjectured it should See also 'Tam. Shrew, a. iv. s. 3.
be so read, without seeing the T. Warton.
first edition. 726. Yet on she moves, &c.] The scene between Samson and
732. With doubtful feel &c.] Like Ismene in the Antigone of Dalila is drawn up with great Sophocles, ver. 532.
judgment, and particular beauty. Και μην προ τυλων ήδ' Ισμηνη
One cannot conceive a more art. Φιλαδελφα κατω δακρυ ειβομενη
ful, soft, and persuasive eloquence Νεφελη δ' οφρυων υπιρ, αιματοεν 'Pelos aurxunto,
than that which is put into the Trygovo' suwita waguar.
mouth of Dalila, nor is the part
I came, still dreading thy displeasure, Samson,
SAMSON. Out, out hyæna; these are thy wonted arts, And arts of every woman false like thee, To break all faith, all vows, deceive, betray, 750 Then as repentant to submit, beseech, And reconcilement move with feign'd remorse,
of Samson less to be admired for sequitur stabula pastorum, et authat stern and resolute firmness ditu assiduo addiscit vocamen, which runs through it. What quod exprimere possit imitatione also gives both parts a great ad- vocis humanæ, ut in hominem ditional beauty is their forming astu accitum nocte sæviat. A so fine a contrast to each other. celebrated tragic writer makes Thyer.
use of the same comparison. 748. Out, out hyæna ;) The Orphan, act ii. hyæna is a creature somewhat like a wolf, and is said to imi- 'Tis thus the false hyæna makes her tate a human voice so artfully as
To draw the pitying traveller to her to draw people to it, and then
den; devour them. So Solinus, the
Your sex are so, such false dissemtranscriber of Pliny, cap. 27. blers all, &c. Multa de ea mira: primum quod