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Private, unactive, calm, contemplative,
Little suspicious to any King; but now
Full grown to Man, acknowledg’d, as I hear,
By John the Baptist, and in publick shown,
Son own'd from Heaven by his Father's voice;
I look'd for some great change; to Honour? no,
But trouble, as old Simeon plain fore-told,
That to the fall and rising he should be
Of many in Israel, and to a sign
Spoken against, that through my very Soul
A sword shall pierce, this is my

favour'd lot,
My Exaltation to Afflictions high;
Afflicted I may be, it seems, and blest;
I will not argue that, nor will repine,
But where delays he now? some great intent
Conceals him: when twelve years he scarce had seen,
I loft him, but so found, as well I saw
He could not lose himself; but went about
His Father's Busness; what he meant I mus’d,
Since understand; much more his absence now
Thus long to some great purpose he obscures.
But I to wait with patience am inur’d;
My heart hath been a fore-house long of things

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And sayings laid up, portending strange events.

Thus Mary pond'ring oft, and oft to mind
Recalling what remarkably had pass’d
Since first her Salutation heard, with thoughts
Meekly.compos'd awaited the fulfilling:
The while her Son tracing the Desart wild,
Sole but with holiest Meditations fed,
Into himself defcended, and at once
All his great work to come before him set;
How to begin, how to accomplish best
His end of being on Earth, and mission high:
For Satan with fly preface to return
Had left him vacant, and with speed was gon
Up to the middle Region of thick Air,
Where all his Potentates in Council fate;
There without sign of boast, or sign of joy
Sollicitous and blank he thus began.

Princes, Heav'ns ancient Sons, Æthereal Thrones,
Demonian Spirits now, from th’Element
Each of his reign allotted, rightlier callid, ,
Pow’rs of Fire, Air, Water, and Earth beneath,
So may we hold our place and these mild seats
Without new trouble; such an Enemy

Is risen to invade us, whom no less
Threatens our expulsion down to Hell;
I, as I undertook, and with the yote
Consenting in full frequence was impowerid,
Have found him, view'd him, tafted him, but find
Far other labour to be undergon
Than when I dealt with Adam first of Men,
Though Adam by his Wife's allurement fell,
However to this Man inferior far,
If he be Man by Mother's side at least,
With more than human gifts from Heav'n adorn'd,
Perfections absolute, Graces divine,
And amplitude of mind to greatest Deeds.
Therefore I am return'd, left confidence
Of my success with Eve in Paradise
Deceive ye to persuasion over-sure
Of like succeeding here; I summon all
Rather to be in readiness, with hand
Or counsel to affift; left I who erst
Thought none my equal, now be over-match'd.

So spake th’old Serpent doubting, and from all
With clamour was assur'd their utmost aid
At his command; when from amidst them rose

Belial,

Belial, the diffolutest Spirit that fell,
The sensuallest, and after Asmodai
The fleshlieft Incubus, and thus advis'd.

Set women in his eyes and in his walk,
Among daughters of men the fairest found;
Many are in each Region pafling fair
As the noon Sky; more like to Goddesses
Than Mortal Creatures, graceful and discreet,
Expert in am'rous Arts, enchanting tongues
Persuasive, Virgin majesty with mild
And sweet allay'd, yet terrible t’approach,
Skill'd to retire, and in retiring draw
Hearts after them tangld in Amorous Nets.
Such object hath the pow'r to soft'n and tame
Severest temper, smooth the rugged'st brow,
Enerve, and with voluptuous hope dissolve,
Draw out with credulous desire, and lead
At will the manlieft, resolutest breast,
As the Magnetic hardest Iron draws.
Women, when nothing else, beguild the heart
Of wiseft Solomon, and made him build,
And made hina bow to the Gods of his Wives.

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To whom quick answer Satán-thus return'd,
Belial, in much uneven scale thou weigh'ft
All others by thy self; because of old
Thou thy self doatdst on woman-kind; admiring
Their shape, their colour, and attractive

grace,
None are, thou think'st, but taken with such toys.
Before the Flood thou with thy lusty Crew,
False titled Sons of God; roaming the Earth
Cast wanton eyes on the daughters of men,
And coupled with them, and begot a race.
Have we not seen, or by relation heard,
In Courts and Regal Chambers how thou lurk’dsty
In Wood or Grove by moslie Fountain side,
In Valley or green Meadow to way-lay
Some Beauty rare, Calisto Clymene,
Daphne, or Semele, Antiopas
Or Amymone, Syrinx, many more
Too long, then lay'dst thy scapes on names ador'd,
Apollo, Neptune, Jupiter or Pan,
Satyr, or Fawn, or Silvan? But these haunts
Delight not all, among the Sons of Men,
How many have with a smile made small account
Of beauty and her lures, easily scorn'd

All

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