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Summer drought, or singed air,
There I suck the liquid air
980 Never scorch thy tresses fair,
All amidst the gardens fair Nor wet October's torrent flood
930 Of Hesperus, and his daughters three Thy molten crystal fill with mud;
That sing about the golden tree : May thy billows roll ashore
Along the crisped shades and bowers The beryl and the golden ore;
Revels the spruce and jocund Springs May thy lofty head be crown’d
The Graces, and the rosy-bosom'd Hours, With many a tower and terrace round,
Thither all their bounties bring ; And here and there thy banks upon
There eternal Summer dwells, With groves of myrrh and cinnamon.
And west-winds, with musky wing,
990 Come, lady, while Heaven lends us grace, About the cedar'd alleys Hing Let us fly this cursed place,
Nard and cassia's balmy smells. Lest the sorcerer us entice
940 | Iris there with humid bow With some other new device.
Waters the odorous banks, that blow Not a waste or needless sound,
Flowers of more mingled hew Till we come to holier ground;
Than her purfled scarf can show ; I shall be your faithful guide
And drenches with Elysian dew Through this gloomy covert wide,
(List, mortals, if your ears be true) And uot many furlongs thence
Beds of hyacinth and roses, Is your father's residence,
Where young Adonis oft reposes, Where this night are met in state
Waxing well of his deep wonnd
1000 Many a friend to gratulate
In slumber soft, and on the ground His wish'd presence; and beside
950 Sadly sits the Assyrian queen : All the swains, that there abide,
But far above in spangled sheen With jigs and rural dance resort ;
Celestial Cupid, her fam'd son, adranc'd, We shall catch them at their sport,
Holds his dear Psyche sweet entranc'd. And our sudden coming there
After her wandering labours long, Will double all their mirth and cheer:
Tin free consent the Gods among
Make her his eternal bride,
Two blissful twins are to be born,
Youth and Joy : so Jove hath sworn. The Scene changes, presenting Ludlow town and
But now my task is smoothly done, the president's castle ; then come in country
I can fly, or I can run, dancers, after them the Attendant Spirit, with Quickly to the green earth's end, the two Brothers and the Lady.
Where the bow'd welkin slow doth bend ;
And from thence can soar as soon
To the corners of the Moon.
Mortals that would follow me,
Love Virtue; she alone is free : Sp. Back, shepherds, back ; enough your play,
She cau teach ye how to climb
1030 Till next sun-shine holiday :
Higher than the sphery chime; Here be, without duck or nod,
Or if Virtue feeble were,
Heaven itself would stoop to her.
ORIGINAL Various READINGS or Comis.
From Milton's MS, in bis own hand.
STAGE-DIRECTIONS. “ A guardian spirit or Here bebold so goodly grown
damon" (enters.] After v. 4, “ In regions mild, Three fair branches of your own ;
&c.” These lines are inserted, but crossed. Heaven hath timely tried their youth, 970 Their faith, their patience, and their truth, Amidst th' Hesperian gardens, on whose banks And sent them here through bard assays
Bedew'd with nectar and celestiall songs, With a crown of deathless praise,
Eternall roses grow, and hyacinth, To triumph in victorious dance
And fruits of golden rind, on whose faire free O'er sensual Folly and Intemperance,
The scalie-harnest dragon ever keeps
His unenchanted eye; around the verge The dances [being] ended, the Spirit epiloguizes, And sacred limits of this blissful isle,
The jealous ocean, that old river, windes Sp. To the ocean now I fly,
His farre extended armes, till with steepe fall And those happy climes that lie
Halfe his wast flood the wild Atlantique fills, Where day never shuts bis eye,
And halse the slou unfadom'd stygian poole. Up in the broad fields of the sky :
But soft, I was not sent to court you wonder
With distant worlds, and strange removed | Ver. 145. Breake off, breake off, I hear the difo
climes. Yet thence I come, and oft from thence behold..
Of some chaste footing neere about
this ground; In the third of the preceding lines, “ Eternal
Some virgin sure benighted in these roses yeeld” had been also written, and then
woods, “ bloome;" buth which are crossed, and grow re
For so I can distinguish by myne art. mains. After stygian poole the following lines,
Run to your shrouds within these braks through which the pen is drawn, occur:
Our number may affrightI doubt me, gentle mortalls, these may seeme
This disposition is reduced to the present con. Strange distances to heare and unknowne climes.
text : then follows a Then follows in the margin, But soft, &c.
STAGE-DIRECTION. “ They all scatter."
And to my mother's charmes.-
My powder'd spells into the spungic air, Beyond the written date of mortall change.
Of power to cheat the eye with sleight
illusion, Ver. 14. That shews the palace of æternity.
And give it false præsentments, Ver. 18. But to my buisnesse now. Neptune
else the place.
And blind is written for sleight.
Ver. 175. Wben for their teeming flocks, and Ver. 45. By old or modern bard, in hall or
garners full. bowre.
Ver. 176. they adore the bounteous Pan. Ver. 58. Which therefore she brought up and Praise had been first written and crossed through; nam'd him Comus.
and adore written over it, but also crossed; and In the margia, whome.
a line drawn under to signify that the original Ver. 62. And in thick covert of black shade im- word should be restored. Mr. Whiter in his bowr'd
learned Specimen of a Commentary on Shakespeare, Excels his mother at her potent art. tirst noticed this method of emendation, adopted Covert is written first, then shelter.
by the poet. See the Specimen, p. 132-134. Ver. 67. For most doe taste through weake in- Ver. 181. In the blind alleys of this arched temperate thirst.
wood. Ver. 72. All other parts remaining as before. Ver. 190. Rose from the hindmost wheeles of Ver. 90. Neerest and likeliest to give præsent
Phæbus' chaire. aide.
Ver. 193 They had eugag'd thire youthly steps Ver. 02. Of virgin steps. I must be viewlesse
too farre now.
To the soone-parting light, and envious Virgin is expunged for hatefull.
darkness Srage-DIRECTION. " Goes out. - Comus enters
Had stolne them from me. with a charming rod and glasse of liquor, with Ver. 199. With everlasting oyle to give thire his rout all headed like some wild beasts ; thire
light. garments, some like men's and some like women's. Ver. 208. And ayrie toungs that bure night-wanThey come on in a wild and antic fashion. In
derers. trant Κωμάζοντες.”
Ver. 214. Thou flittering angel girt with goldeu Ver. 97. In the steepe Tartarian streame.
wings, Ver. 99. Shoots against the northern pole.
And thou unspotted forme of Chastity, Dusky is a marginal correction.
I see ye visibly, and while I see yee, Ver. 108. And quick Law with her scrupulous
This duskye hollow is a paradise, head.
And heaven gates ore my head: now I Ver. 114. Lead with swift round the months and
Ver. 219. Would send a glistering cherub, if Ver. 117 And on the yellow sands and shelves.
need were. Yellow is altered to tawny.
Ver. 229. Prompt me; and they perhaps are Ver. 122. Night has better sweets to prove.
not far hence. Ver. 133. And makes a blot in nature.
Ver. 231. Within thy ayrie cell. Again,
Cell is in the margin.
Ver. 243. And give resounding grace, is written And throws a blot ore all the aire.
in the margin of the manuscript ; and the forVer. 134, Stay thy polisht ebon chaire
mer part of the line, which regularly concluded Wherein thuu ridest with Hecaté, the song, is blotted out with great care; but And favour our close jocundrie. enough, I think, remains to show that the poet, Till all thy dues bee done, and nought and not Lawes, wrote And hold a counterpointe. left out.
Before Comus speaks'at v. 244, is this STAGEVer. 144. With a light and frolick round.
“ Comus looks in and specks." STAGE-DIRECTION. The measure, in a wild, Ver. 252. Of darknesse till she smild... rude, and wanton antic."
Ver. 254. Culling their powerfull berbering
Ver. 257, Scylla would weepe,
She might be free from perill where she is, Chiding her barking waves into atten
But where an equal poise of hope and It was at first And chide.
fear. Ver. 268. Liu'st here with Pan and Sylvan.- For encounter he had first written passato, and Ver. 270. To touch the prospering growth of this hopes and fears ; and Beshrew me but I would, intall wood.
stead of I could be willing. Ver. 279. Could that divide you from thire Ver. 415. As you imagin, brother : she has a ushering hands.
hidden strength. Ver. 280. They left me wearied on a grassie Ver. -421. She that has that, is clad in compleate turf.
steele: Ver. 304. To help you find them out.
And may on every needful accident, Ver. 310. Without sure steerage of well prac
Be it not don in pride or wilfull tempting, tiz'd feet.
Walk through huge forests and unVer. 312. Dingle or bushie dell of this vide
harbour'd heaths, wood.
Infamous hills, and sandie perilous In a different hand “wild wood.”
[Chastitie, Ver. 316. Within these shroudie limits.
Where, through the sacred que of Ver. 321. Till further quest be made.
No savage fierce, bandite, or mounVer. 323. And smoakie rafters.
taneere, Ver. 326. And is pretended yet.
Shall dare to soile her virgin puritie. Ver. 327. Less warranted than this I cannot be. Ver. 428. Yea, even where very desolation Ver. 329. Square this tryal.
(horrid shades, After v. 330, STAGE-DIRECTION. “ Exeunt.
By grots and caverns shagg'd with The two Brothers enter.”
And yawning ders, where glaring monVer. 340. With a long-levell’d rule of streaming
sters house, light.
She may pass on, &c. Ver. 349. In this sad dungeon of innumerous The line And yawning, &c. is crossed, and thereboughs.
fore omitted, I suppose, in the printed copies, But first lone, then sad, and lastly close.
Ver. 432. Nay more, no evill thing, &c. Ver. 352. From the chill dew, in this dead soli- Ver. 433. In fog, or fire, by lake, or moorie fen, tude?
Blue wrinkled hag, or stubborne une Perhaps some cold banke is her boul
Then, unvanquish'd, then, unconquerd.
at our unkindne.se:
numents, think my sister, &c.
Hovering, and sitting by a newe-made Dead solitude is also surrounding wild. Some of
grave. the additional lines (v. 350—366.) are on a sepa- Ver. 481. List, list, methought I heard. rate slip of paper.
Ver. 485. Some curl'd man of the sword calling to Ver. 361. Which, grant they be so, &c.
his fellows. Ver. 362. The date of grief.
Hedger is also written over curl'd man of the Ver. 365. This self-delusion.
sword. Ver. 371. Coald stirre the stable mood of her Ver. 490. Had best looke to his forehead : here calme thoughts.
be brambles. Ver. 376. Oft seeks to solitarie sweet retire. STAGE-DIRECTION “ He hallous : the guardian Ver. 383. Walks in black vapours, though the dæmon hallous again, and enters in the habit of a noon-tide brand
shepherch" Blaze in the summer solstice. Ver.,491. Come not too neere; you fall on Ver. 388. - of inen or heards.
pointed stakes else. Ver. 390. For who would rob a hermit of his Ver. 192. Dem. What voice, &c. beads,
Ver. 496. And sweeten'd every musk-rose of the His books, or his haire gotene, or ma.
Ver. 497. How cam'st thou heere good shepVer. 400. Bid me think,
herd ? Ver. 403. Uninjur'd in this vast and hideous wild. Ver. 499. Leapt ore the penne.At first “this wide surrounding wast.”
Then,“ his fold;" Then the fold.” Ver. 409. Secure, without all doubt or question : Ver. 512. What feares, good shepherd ? no,
(darke, to trie Ver, 513. I'll tell you. I could be willing, though now i' th Ver. 5.3. Deep learnt in all his mother's A tough encounter with the shaggiest
(circuit, It had been first. written, Enurd; and lastly That lurks by hedge or lane of this dead Deep skill'd. To have her by my side, though I were Ver. 531. Tending my flocks hard by i th' pas.
Ver. 545. With spreading honey-suckle. for before, Comus's first speech was uninterruptThen blowing, then flaunting,
cdly continued thus, Ver. 548. but, ere the close.
“Root-bound, that fled Apollo. Why Ver. 553. Drowey flighted steeds:
do you frown?” Ver. 555. At last a softe and solemn breathing Ver. 669. "That youth and fancie can beget, sound
When the briske blood growes lively.Rose like the soste steame of distilld in the former bine it was also written * can inperfumes.
vent;" and in the latter “ blood returnes,” So he had at first written these lines : in the Ver. 678. To life so friendly, and so coole to former of which softe is altered to still, then to
thirst. sweet, and lastly re-admitted; but in the latter
Poor ladie thou hast need of some refreshsofte is erased, and the line is completed thus :
Why shonld you, &c.Rose like the steam of slow distillid After v. 697, the nine lines now standing were perfumes.
introduced instead of “ Poore ladie, &c." as But slow is altered to rich. Possibly Gray had above. tioticed this very curious passage in Milton's ma- Ver. 687. That hast been tired all day. muscript; for, in his Progress of Poesy, he calls Ver. 689. Heere fair virgin. the Æolian lyre
Ver. 695. Ougly-headed monsters. “ Parent of sweet and solemn breathing Ver. 696. Hence with thy hel-brew'd opiate. airs :"
Then foule-bru'd, then brew'd enchantments. which is Milton's second alteration of ver. 555. Ver. 698. With visor'd falshood and base for. Ver. 563. Too well I might perceive.
geries. Ver. 574. The helplesse innocent lady.-
Ver. 707. To those' budge doctors of the Stoit Ver. 605. Harpyes and hydras, or all the mon
gowne. strous buggs.
Ver. 712. Covering the earth with odours and 'Twixt Africa and Inde, l'le find him
Cramming the seas with spawne inAnd force him to release his new-gol
The fields with cattell, and the aire urth Or drag bim by the curles, and cleave
Ver. 17. To adorn her sons
But deck is the first reading, then adorn, then Ver. 611. But here thy steele can do thee small deck again. availe.
Ver. 721. Should in a pet of temperance feed Little stead is here crossed, and marked for re
on fetches. admission, as praise in v. 176.
But pulse was the first reading, At last, resumed. Ver. 614. He with his bare wand can unguilt thy Ver. 727. Living as nature's bastards, not her
Ver. 732. The sea orefraught would heave her Ver. 627. And shew me simples of a thousand
Above the stars, and th' unsought diaVer. 636. And yet more med'cinal than that
Would so bestudde the center with thire ancient Moly
[deep, Which Mercury to wise Ulysses gave.
And so imblaze the forehead of the Ver. 640. 'Gainst all inchantments, mildew blast,
Were they not taken thence, that they or damp.
below So this line is pointed in the MS.
Would grow enur'd to day, and come Ver. 648. As I will give you as we go, [or, on
at last. the way] you may,
Ver. 737. List, ladie, be not coy, nor be not Boldly assault the necromantik hall;
cozen'd. Where if he be, with sudilaine violence Here nor had been erased, and again written over And brandisht blade rush on him, the rasure; and afterwards and. Mr. Wharton
break his glasse, [ground, omits both, and says that“ Milton seems to have And poure the lushious potion on the sounded coy as a dissyllable; as also coarse at And seize his wand.
v. 749." But the manuscript silences the reVer. 657. I follow thee,
mark, as far as it relates to this line. And good heaven cast his best regard | Ver. 744. It withers on the stalke and fudes Ex.
away. After v. 658, STAGE DIRECTION.
" The scene
Ver. 749. They had thire name thence; coarse changes to a stately palace, set out with all mana
beetle brous. ner of deliciousness : tables spread with all dain- Ver. 751. The sample.ties. Comus is discovered with his rabble : and Ver. 755. Think what, and look upon this cordial the lady set in an inchanted chaire. She offers
julep. to rise."
T'hen follow verses from v. 672703. From . Ver. 661. And you a statue fixt, as Daphne 779 to 806, the lines are not in the manuscript,
but were added afterwards. Ver. 662. Fool, thou art over-proud, do not Ver. 763. As if she meant her children, &c. . boast.
Ver. 806.—Come y' are loo morall. This whole speech of the Lady, and the first verse Ver. 807. This is mere moral stuff, the very of the next of Comus, were added in the margin :
And settlings of a melancholy blood; Temperance is a marginal reading. Patience had
been first written and erased; and is restored After v. 813. Srage-direction. “ The brothers by the line drawn underneath it, as at praise, v. rush in, strike his glasse down: the [monsters, 176. It is also again-written over temperance then, shapes make as though they would resist, but erased in the margin. are all driven in. Dæmon enters with them.” Ver. 973. To a crowne of deathlesse bays. Ver. 814. What have you let the false enchau- After y. 975, STAGE-DIRECTION « The Demon ter pass ?
sings or says." Ver. 816. Without his art reverst.
Ver. 976. These concluding lyrics are twice Ver. 818. We cannot free the lady that remains. written in pp. 28, 29, of the MS. the first are And, here sits.
crossed. Ver. 821. There is another way that may be Ver. 979. Up in the plaine fields. us'd.
Ver. 982. Of Allas and his daughters three. Ver. 826. Sabrina is her name, a goddess chaste. Hesperus is written over Atlas, and neeces over Then erased; then virgin before goulless, and pure daughters : but daughters are distinguished by after chaste.
the line underneath, although it had been erased; Ver. 829. She, gniltlesse damsel, flying the mad which is not the case with Atlas. See Mr. persuite.
Whiter's acule 'remark on this circumstance, Ver. 831, To the streamc.
Specimen &c. as above, p. 133. But first “the flood.”
Ver. 983. After “the goulden tree," he had Ver. 834. Held up thire white wrists and re- written, but crossed, ceau'd her in,
Where grows the high-borne gold upon And bore her straite to aged Nereus
his native tree. hall.
Ver. 984. This verse and the three following Ver. 845. Helping all urchin blasts, and ill-luck
were added. signes
(lights to leave ; Ver. 988. That there eternal Summer dwells.. That the shrewd meddling elfe dc- Ver. 990. About the myrtle alleys fling And oflen takes our cattel with strange
Balm and cassia's fragrant smells. pinches.
Ver. 992. Iris there with garnisht (then garish] Which she, &c.
bow. Ver. 849. Carrol her goodnesse loud in lively Ver. 995. Then her watchet scarf can shew. Jayes.
This is in the first copy of the Lyrics. In the And lovely, from lively.
second, Ver. 851. Of pansies, and of bonnie daffadils.
Then her purfled scarf can shew, Ver. 853. Each clasping charme, and secret hold
Yellow watchet, greene, and blew, ing spell.
And drenches oft with manna (then Ver. 857. In honour'd virtue's cause : this will I
Sabæan] dew trie.
Beds of hyacinth and roses, And in the margin “ In hard distressed need.”
Where many a cherub soft reposes. Then follows, “And adde the power of some But “ Yellow, watchet, greene, and blew," is strong verse." Adjuring is a marginal correction. crossed in the second copy. What relates to Ver. 860. Listen, virgin, where thou silst. Adonis, and to Cupid and Psyche, was afterwards Before v. 867, is written, “ To be said."
added. Ver. 879. By dead Parthenope's dear tomb,&c. Ver. 1012. Now my message (or buisnesse) well This and the three following lines are crossed.
is done. Ver. 895. That my rich wheeles inlayes.
Ver. 1014. Farre beyond the earth's end, Ver. 910. Vertuous ladie, look on me.
Where the welkin low doth bend. Ver. 921. To waite on Ampbitrite in her bowre. He had also written “ the welkin cleere." And Ver. 924. May thy crystal waves for this.
“ the earth's greene end.” Ver. 927. That tumble downe from snowie bills. Ver. 1023. Heav'n itselfe would bow to her. Ver. 948. Where this night are come in state.
The following readings, which have occurred in Ver. 951. All the swains that near abide.
this manuscript, will he found in Lawes's ediVer. 956. Come let us haste, the stars are high.
tion of Comus in 1637. They were altered in But night reignes monarch yet in the
Milton's own edition of 1645. mid skie, STAGE-DIRECTIONS.
" Ereunt.The scene Ver. 195. Stolne. changes, and then is presented Ludlow town, and Ver. 214. Flittering. the president's castle: then enter country
Ver. 251. She smil'd. dances and such like gambols, &c. At these sports Ver. 472. Hovering. the Damon, with the iwo Brothers and the Lady, Ver. 513. I'll tell you. enters. The demon sings."
Ver. 508. Or cleave his scalpe down to the hippes. Ver. 962. Of nimbler toes, and courtly guise,
Such as Hermes did devise. In the former line “such neat guise,” had also been written. After v. 965. No Srage-DIRECTION, only “ 2 VARIOUS READINGS OF THE MASK op Coyos, Song."
BELONGING TO THE DUKE OF BRIDGWATER. Ver. 971. Thire faith, thire temperance, and thire truth,
Having been favoured with the use of this VOL. VII.