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And sweet reluctant amorous delay.
Nor those mysterious parts were then conceal’d;
Then was not guilty shame; dishonest shame
Of nature's works, honour dishonourable,
Sin-bred, how have ye troubled all mankind
With shews instead, mere shews of seeming pure,
And banish'd from man's life his happiest life,
Simplicity and spotless innocence !
So pass’d they naked on, nor shunn'd the sight
Of God or angel, for they thought no ill:
So hand in hand they pass'd, the loveliest pair
That ever since in love's embraces met,
Adam the goodliest man of men since born

sons, the fairest of her daughters Eve.
Under a tuft of shade, that on a green
Stood whisp’ring soft, by a fresh fountain side
They sat them down; and after no more toil
Of their sweet gard’ning labour than suffic'd
To recommend cool Zephyr, and made ease
More easy, wholesome thirst and appetite
More grateful, to their supper fruits they fell,
Nectarine fruits, which the compliant boughs


330 340

315 ye] Should we not read "you?' For what is he speaking to besides Shame? Newton.

323 goodliest] On this idiom, borrowed from the Greek, refer to Vigerus de Idiotismis, p. 68, and Thucyd. lib. i. c. 50. Ναυμαχία γαρ άυτη Έλλησι προς Ελληνας νεών πλήθει μεγίστη δη των προ εαυτής γεγένηται. V. Herman ad Euripid. Med. ed. Elmsley, p. 67.

832 compliant boughs] Compare the Sarcotis of Masenius, lib. i. p. 94, ed. Barbou:

Yielded them, side-long as they sat recline
On the soft downy bank damask'd with flowers.
The savoury pulp they chew, and in the rind, 335
Still as they thirsted, scoop the brimming stream;
Nor gentle purpose nor endearing smiles
Wanted, nor youthful dalliance, as beseems
Fair couple, link'd in happy nuptial league
Alone as they. About them frisking play'd
All beasts of th' earth, since wild, and of all chase
In wood or wilderness, forest or den ;
Sporting the lion ramp'd, and in his paw
Dandled the kid; bears, tigers, ounces, pards,
Gambol'd before them; th' unwieldly elephant 345
To make them mirth us'd all his might, and wreath'd
His lithe proboscis; close the serpent sly
Insinuating wove with Gordian twine
His braided train, and of his fatal guile
Gave proof unheeded; others on the grass
Couch'd, and now fill’d with pasture gazing sat,
Or bedward ruminating: for the sun
Declin'd was hasting now with prone career
To th' ocean isles, and in th' ascending scale
Of heav'n the stars that usher evening rose :

· Hic mensæ genialis opes, et dapsilis arbos
Fructibus inflexos, foecundo palmite, ramos

Curvat ad obsequium, præbetque alimenta petenti.' 334 damask'd] P. Fletcher. P. Isl. c. xii. 1.

Upon the flowrie banks Where various flowers damaske the fragrant seat.' Todd.

337 gentle] Spens. F. Qu. iii. 8. 14. 'He gan make gentle purpose to his dame. Thyer.





When Satan still in gaze, as first he stood, Scarce thus at length fail'd speech recover'd sad.

O hell! what do mine eyes with grief behold, Into our room of bliss thus high advanc’d Creatures of other mould, earth-born perhaps, 360 Not spirits, yet to heavenly spirits bright Little inferior; whom my thoughts pursue With wonder, and could love, so lively shines In them divine resemblance, and such grace The hand that form’d them on their shape hath

pour'd! Ah gentle pair, ye little think how nigh Your change approaches, when all these delights Will vanish and deliver ye to woe, More woe, the more your taste is now of joy: Happy, but for so happy ill secur’d Long to continue; and this high seat your heaven Ill fenc'd for heaven to keep out such a foe As now is enter'd: yet no purpos’d foe To you, whom I could pity thus forlorn, Though I unpitied. League with you I seek, 375

Ι And mutual amity, so strait, so close, That I with you must dwell, or you with me Henceforth : my dwelling haply may not please,


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858 O hell] Compare the speech of Antitheus, in the Sarcotis, at the sight of the happiness of Sarcothea, lib. i. p. 94.

· Viderat Antitheus niveam per gramina nympham
Errantem, et facilis captantem gaudia ruris,
Pascentemque animum jucundæ munere vitæ.
Vidit, et indoluit tantorum herede bonorum,' &c.




Like this fair paradise, your sense; yet such
Accept your Maker's work; he


it me. Which I as freely give : hell shall unfold To entertain you two, her widest gates, And send forth all her kings: there will be room, Not like these narrow limits, to receive Your numerous offspring; if no better place, Thank him who puts me loath to this revenge On

you, who wrong me not, for him who wrong'd. And should I at your harmless innocence Melt, as I do, yet public reason just, Honour and empire with revenge enlarg'd, By conquering this new world, compels me now To do, what else, though damn'd, I should abhor.

So spake the fiend, and with necessity, The tyrant's plea, excus’d his devilish deeds. Then from his lofty stand on that high tree Down he alights amoug the sportful herd Of those fourfooted kinds, himself now one, Now other, as their shape serv'd best his end Nearer to view his prey, and unespy'd To mark what of their state he more might learn By word or action mark’d: about them round A lion now he stalks with fiery glare, Then as a tiger, who by chance hath spy'd In some purlieu two gentle fawns at play, Straight couches close, then rising changes oft 405 His couchant watch, as one who chose his ground, Whence rushing he might surest seize them both Grip'd in each paw: when Adam first of men,


399 415


To first of women Eve thus moving speech,
Turn'd him all ear to hear new utterance flow.

Sole partner and sole part of all these joys,
Dearer thy self than all, needs must the Power
That made us, and for us this ample world,
Be infinitely good, and of his good
As liberal and free as infinite,
That rais'd us from the dust and plac'd us here
In all this happiness, who at his hand
Have nothing merited, nor can perform
Aught whereof he hath need, he who requires
From us no other service than to keep

easy charge, of all the trees In paradise that bear delicious fruit So various, not to taste that only Tree Of Knowledge, planted by the Tree of Life ; So near grows death to life; whate'er death is, Some dreadful thing no doubt; for well thou know'st God hath pronounc'd it death to taste that tree, The only sign of our obedience left Among so many signs of power and rule Conferr'd

upon us, and dominion giv'n Over all other creatures that possess Earth, air, and sea. Then let us not think hard. One easy prohibition, who enjoy Free leave so large to all things else, and choice Unlimited of manifold delights : But let us ever praise him and extol His bounty, following our delightful task [ers; To prune these growing plants, and tend these flowWhich were it toilsome, yet with thee were sweet.



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