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Chr. All this is true, and much more which thou hast left out; but the prince whom I serve and honour is merciful and ready to forgive. But besides, these infirmities possessed me in thy country; for there I sucked them in, and I have groaned under them, been sorry for them, and have obtained pardon of my prince.
Apol. Then Apollyon broke out into a grievous rage, saying, I am an enemy to this prince. I hate his person, his laws, and people. I am come out on purpose to with
Chr. Apollyon, beware what you do; for I am in the king's highway, the way of holiness; therefore take heed to yourself.
Apol. Then Apollyon straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said, I am void of fear in this matter; prepare thyself to die, for I swear by my infernal den that thou shalt go no farther. Here will I spill thy soul !
And with that he threw a flaming dart at his breast; but Christian had a shield in his hand, with which he caught it, and so prevented the danger of that.
Then did Christian draw, for he saw it was time to bestir him; and Apollyon as fast made at him, throwing darts as thick as hail; by the which, notwithstanding all that Christian could do to avoid it, Apollyon wounded him in his head, his hand, and foot. This made Christian give a little back. Apollyon, therefore, followed his work amain, and Christian again took courage, and resisted as manfully as he could. This sore combat lasted for above half a day, even till Christian was almost quite spent. For you must know
A more unequal match can hardly be:
The valiant man, by handling sword and shield,
CHRISTIAN BATTLING WITH APOLLYON,
Then Apollyon straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said, I am void of fear in this matter; prepare thyself to die, for I swear by my infernal den that thou shalt go no further. Here will I spill thy soul.
that Christian, by reason of his wounds, must needs grow weaker and weaker,
Then Apollyon, espying his opportunity, began to gather up close to Christian, and, wrestling with him, gave him a dreadful fall; and with that Christian's sword flew out of his hand. Then said Apollyon, I am sure of thee now: and with that he had almost pressed him to death, so that Christian began to despair of life. But as God would have it, while Apollyon was fetching his last blow, thereby to make a full end of this good man, Christian nimbly reached out his hand for his sword, and caught it, saying, Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy; when I fall, I shall arise (Mic. vii. 8): and with that he gave him a deadly thrust, which made him give back as one that had received his mortal wound. Christian perceiving that, made at him again; saying, Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors, through him that loved us (Rom. viii. 37; James iv. 7). And with that Apollyon spread forth his dragon's wings, and sped him away, that Christian saw him no more.
In this combat no man can imagine, unless he had seen and heard as I did, what yelling and hideous roaring Apollyon made all the time of the fight: he spake like a dragon: and on the other side, what sighs and groans burst from Christian's heart. I never saw him all the while give so much as one pleasant look, till he perceived he had wounded Apollyon with his two-edged sword; then, indeed, he did smile, and look upward; but it was the dreadfullest fight that ever I saw.
So when the battle was over, Christian said, I will here give thanks to him that hath delivered me out of the mouth of the lion, to him that did help me against Apollyon. And so he did, saying,
Great Beelzebub, the captain of this fiend,
He sent him harness'd out; and he, with rage
But blessed Michael helped me, and I,
And thank, and bless his holy name always.
Then there came to him a hand with some of the leaves of the tree of life, the which Christian took and applied to the wounds that he had received in the battle, and was healed immediately. He also sat down in that place to eat bread, and to drink of the bottle that was given him a little before; so, being refreshed, he addressed himself to his journey, with his sword drawn in his hand; for he said, I know not but some other enemy may be at hand. But he met with no other affront from Apollyon quite through this valley.
Now at the end of this valley was another, called the Valley of the Shadow of Death, and Christian must needs go through it, because the way to the celestial city lay through the midst of it. Now this valley is a very solitary place. The prophet Jeremiah thus describes it: A wilderness, a land of deserts, and of pits; a land of drought, and of the shadow of death; a land that no man (but a Christian) passeth through, and where no man dwelt (Jer. ii, 6).
Now here Christian was worse put to it than in his fight with Apollyon, as by the sequel you shall see.
I saw then in my dream, that when Christian was got to the borders of the Shadow of Death, there met him two men, children of them that brought up an evil report of the good land, making haste to go back (Num. xiii.), to whom Christian spake as follows:
Chr. Whither are you going?
Men. They said, Back! back! And we would have you to do so too, if either life or peace is prized by you.
Chr. Why, what's the matter? said Christian. Men. Matter! said they; we were going that way as you are going, and went as far as we durst, and indeed we