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Now, when they were almost at the end of this ground, they perceived that a little before them was a solemn noise, of one that was much concerned. So they went on, and looked before them: and behold, they saw, as they thought, a man upon his knees, with hands and eyes lifted up and speaking, as they thought, earnestly to one that was above. They drew nigh; but could not tell what he said; so they went softly till he had done. When he had done, he got up, and began to run towards the Celestial City. Then Mr. Great-Heart called after him: saying, "So ho, friend! let us have your company, if you go, as I suppose you do, to the Celestial City." So the man stopped, and they came up to him. But so soon as Mr. Honest saw him, he said, "I know this man.' Then said Mr. Valiant-for-Truth, "Pr'ythee, who is it?" "It is one, (said he,) that comes from whereabouts I dwelt; his name is Standfast; he is certainly a right good pilgrim."

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So they came up one to another; and presently Standfast said to old Honest, "Ho! Father Honest, are you there?" Ay, (said he,) that I am, as sure as you are there." Right glad am I, (said Mr. Standfast,) that I have found you on this road." "And as glad am I, (said the other,) that I espied you upon your knees." Then Mr. Standfast blushed, and said, "But why? did you see me?" "Yes, that I did, (quoth the other;) and from my heart was glad at the sight." "Why, what did you think?" said Standfast. "Think! (said old Honest,) what should I think? I thought we had an honest man upon the road; therefore should have his company by and by." "If you thought not amiss, how happy am I! But if I be not as I should, it is I alone must bear it." "That is true, (said the other;) but your fear doth farther confirm me, that things are right betwixt the Prince of pilgrims and your soul: for saith he, Happy is the man that feareth always."*

Valiant-for-Truth. Well, but brother, I pray thee tell us, what was it that was the cause of thy being upon thy knees even now? Was it for some obligations laid by special mercies upon thee, or how?

Standfast. Why, we are, you see, upon the Enchanted Ground; and as I was coming along, I was musing with myself of what a dangerous nature the road in this place was, and how many that had come even thus far on pilgrimage, had here been stopped, and been destroyed: I thought also of the manner of death, with which this place destroyeth men: those that die here die of no violent dis

Prov. xxviii. 14.

temper: the death which such die, is not grievous to them: for he that goeth away in a sleep, begins that journey with desire and pleasure: yea, such acquiesce in the will of that disease.

Then Mr. Honest, interrupting him, said, “Did you see the two men asleep in the harbor?"

Standfast. Ay, ay, I saw Heedless and Too-bold there; and, for aught I know, there they will lie till they rot: But let me go on with my tale. As I was thus musing, as I said, there was one in very pleasant attire, (but old,) who presented herself unto me, and offered me three things; to wit, her body, her purse, and her bed. Now, the truth is, I was both weary and sleepy; I am also as poor as an owlet, and that perhaps the witch knew. Well, I repulsed her once and twice; but she put by my repulses, and smiled. Then I began to be angry; but she mattered that nothing at all. Then she made offers again, and said, "If I would be ruled by her, she would make me great and happy for (said she) I am the mistress of the world: and men are made happy by me." Then I asked her name, and she told me it was Madam Bubble. This set me farther from her; but she still followed me with enticements. Then I betook me, as you saw, to my knees, and with hands lifted up, and cries, I prayed to Him that had said he would help. So just as you came up, the gentlewoman went her way. Then I continued to give thanks for this great deliverance: for I verily believe she intended no good, but rather sought to make a stop of me in my journey.

Honest. Without doubt, her designs were bad. But stay; now you talk of her, methinks I either have seen her, or have read some story of her.

Standfast. Perhaps you have done both.

Honest. Madam Bubble! Is she not a tall, comely dame, something of a swarthy complexion?

Standfast. Right; you hit it; she is just such a one. Honest. Does she not speak very smoothly, and give you a smile at the end of every sentence?

Standfast. You fall right upon it again; for, these are her very actions.

Honest. Doth she not wear a great purse by her side; and is not her hand often in it, fingering her money, as if that was her heart's delight?

Standfast. It is just so: had she stood by all this while, you could not more amply have set her forth before me, nor have better described her features.

Honest. Then he that drew her picture, was a good limner; and he that wrote of her, said true.

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Great-Heart. This woman is a witch; and it is by virtue of her sorceries, that the ground* is enchanted. Whoever doth lay her head down in her lap, had as good lay it down upon that block over which the axe doth hang; and whoever lay their eyes upon her beauty, are counted the enemies of God. This is she that maintaineth in their splendor, all those that are the enemies of pilgrims. Yea, this is she that hath brought off many a man from a pilgrim's life. She is a great gossiper; she is always (both she and her daughters) at one pilgrim's heels or another; now commending, and then preferring the excellencies of this life. She is a bold and impudent slut; she will talk with any man. She always laugheth poor pilgrims to scorn, but highly commends the rich. If there be one cunning to get money in a place, she will speak well of him from house to house. She loveth banqueting and feasting mainly well; she is always at one full table or another. She has given it out at some places, that she is a goddess; and therefore some do worship her. She has her time, and open places of cheating and she will say, and avow it, that none can show a good comparable to hers. She promiseth to dwell with children's children, if they would but love and make much of her. She will cast out of her purse gold like dust, in some places, and to some persons. She loves to be sought after, spoken well of, and to lie in the bosoms of men. She is never weary of commending her commodities; and she loves them most that think best of her. She will promise crowns and kingdoms, if they will but take her advice; yet many hath she brought to the halter, and ten thousand times more to hell.

Standfast. Oh! what a mercy it is that I did resist her! for whither might she have drawn me?

Great-Heart. Whither? Nay, none but God knows. But in general, to be sure, she would have drawn thee into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. It was she that set Absalom against his father; and Jeroboam against_his_master: it was she that persuaded Judas to sell his Lord; and that prevailed with Demas to forsake the godly pilgrim's life: none can tell of the mischief that she doeth. She makes variance betwixt rulers and subjects, betwixt parents and children, betwixt neighbor and neighbor, betwixt a man

*The world.

† James 4, 5.-1 John ii. 15.

Who will show us any good? is the inquiry of the worldly-minded: while the pilgrim's request is, Lord, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us. Psalm iv. 6.

§ 1 Tim. vi. 9.

X

and his wife, betwixt a man and himself, betwixt the flesh and the spirit. Wherefore, good master Standfast, be as your name is, and when you have done all, 'stand.'

At this discourse, there was, among the pilgrims, a mixture of joy and trembling; but at length they broke out and sang:

What danger is the Pilgrim in!
How many are his foes!

How many ways there are to sin,
No living mortal knows!

Some in the ditch spoil'd are, yea, can

Lie tumbling in the mire;

Some, though they shun the frying-pan,

Do leap into the fire.

After this, 1 beheld until they were come unto the land of Beulah; where the sun shineth night and day. Here, because they were weary, they betook themselves a while to rest. And because this country was common for pil grims, and because the orchards and vineyards that were here, belonged to the King of the Celestial country; therefore they were licensed to make bold with any of his things. But a little while soon refreshed them here; for the bells did so ring, and the trumpets continually sounded so melodiously, that they could not sleep; and yet they received as much refreshing, as if they slept their sleep never so soundly. Here also all the noise of them that walked in the streets was, " More pilgrims are come to town!" And another would answer, saying, " And so many went over the water, and were let in at the golden gates, to-day." They would cry again, "There is now a legion of shining ones just come to town; by which we know that there are more pilgrims upon the road; for here they come to wait for them, and comfort them after their sorrow."

Then the pilgrims got up, and walked to and fro. But how were their eyes now filled with celestial visions! In this land, they heard nothing, saw nothing, felt nothing, smelt nothing, tasted nothing, that was offensive to their stomach or mind; only when they tasted of the water of the River, over which they were to go, they thought that tasted a little bitterish to the palate; but it proved sweet when it was down.*

In this place there was a record kept of the names of them that had been pilgrims of old, and a history of all the famous acts that they had done. It was here also much discoursed, how the River to some has its flowings, and

*Note.-Death is bitter to the flesh, but sweet to the soul.

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what ebbings it has had while others have gone over. has been in a manner dry for some, while it has overflowed its banks for others.*

In this place, the children of the town would go into the King's gardens, and gather nosegays for the pilgrims, and bring them to them with affection. Here also grew camphire and spikenard, saffron, calamus, and cinnamon, with all trees of frankincense, myrrh, and aloes, with all chief spices. With these the pilgrims' chambers were perfumed while they stayed here: and with these were their bodies anointed, to prepare them to go over the River, when the time appointed was come.

Now while they lay here, and waited for the good hour, there was a noise in the town, that there was a post come from the Celestial City, with matters of great importance, to one Christiana, the wife of Christian the pilgrim. So inquiry was made for her; and the house was found out where she was. So the post presented her with a letter: the contents were: "Hail, good woman! I bring thee tidings that the Master calleth for thee, and expecteth that thou shouldest stand in his presence, in clothes of immortality, within these ten days."

When he had read this letter to her, he gave her therewith a sure token that he was a true messenger, and was come to bid her make haste to be gone. The token was an arrow sharpened with love, let easily into her heart; which, by degrees, wrought so effectually with her, that, at the time appointed, she must be gone.

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When Christiana saw that her time was come, and that she was the first of this company that was to go over; she called for Mr. Great-Heart, her Guide, and told him how matters were. So he told her, he was heartily glad of the news, and could have been glad had the post come for him. Then did she bid that he should give advice how all things should be prepared for her journey.

So he told her, saying; "Thus and thus it must be; and we that survive, will accompany you to the River-side." Then she called for her children, and gave them her blessing, and told them, "That she had read with comfort the mark that was set on their foreheads; and was glad to see them with her there, and that they had kept their garments so white. Lastly, she bequeathed to the poor that little she had, and commanded her sons and daughters to be ready against the messenger should come for them."

* Death has its ebbings and flowings, like the tide. Thus Christian and his companion had to pass through this River when the waters were high.

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