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Of yesterday, so late hath passid the lips 675 Of Heav'n's Almighty! 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
680 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 shadowy cloud withdraws, I am to haste, And all who under me their banners wave, Homeward with flying march, where we possess The quarters of the north; there to prepare Fit entertainment to receive our King 690 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' unwary breast Of his associate: he together calls Of sev'ral one by one, the regent pow'rs, Under him regent: tells, as he was taught, That the Most High commanding, now ere night, Now ere dim night had disencumber'd Heav'n, The great hierarchal standard was to move ; 70 1 Tells the suggested cause, and casts between Ambiguous words and jealousies, to sound
Or taint integrity: but all obey'd
Son, thou in whom my glory I behold
place, our sanctuary, our hill. To whom the Son, with calm aspect and clear,
Lightning divine, ineffable, serene,
So spake the Son; but Satan with his Pow'rs Far was advanc'd on winged speed, an host Innumerable as the stars of night,
745 Or stars of morning, dew-drops, which the Sun Impearls on ev'ry leaf and ev'ry flow'r. Regions they pass'd, the mighty regencies Of Seraphim, and Potentates, and Thrones, In their triple degrees ; regions to which 750 All thy dominion, Adam, is no more Than what this garden is to all the earth, And all the sea, from one entire globose Stretch'd into longitude ; which having pass'd, At length into the limits of the north 755 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 tow'rs From diamond quarries hewn, and rocks of gold; The palace of great Lucifer (so call 760 That structure in the dialect of men Interpreted) which not long after, he Affecting all equality with God,
In imitation of that mount whereon
Jar not with liberty, but well consist.
800 Of those imperial titles which assert Our being ordain'd to govern, not to serve.
Thus far his bold discourse without controul Had audience, when among
the Seraphim Abdiel, than whom none with more zeal ador'd The Deity', and divine commands obey'd, 806 Stood
and in a flame of zeal severe, The current of his fury thus oppos'd :
O argument blasphemous, false, and proud ! Words which no ear ever to hear in Heav'n 810 Expected, least of all from thee, Ingrate, In place thyself so high above thy peers. Canst thou with impious obloquy condemn The just decree of God, pronounc'd and sworn, That to his only Son by right endu'd With regal sceptre, ev'ry soul in Heav'n Shall bend the knee, and in that honour due Confess him rightful King ? Unjust thou say'st, Flatly unjust, to bind with laws the free, And equal over equals, to let reign
820 One over all with unsucceeded pow'r. Shalt thou give law to God? Shalt thou dispute