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For inward light alas
Puts forth no visual beam.
O mirror of our fickle ftate,
Since man on earth unparallel'd!
By how much from the top of wondrous glory,
To lowest pitch of abject fortune thou art fall'n.
Whom long descent of birth
Or the sphere of fortune raises;
But thee whofe ftrength, while virtue was her mate,
Sams. I hear the found of words, their fenfe the air Diffolves unjointed ere it reach my ear.
Chor. He speaks, let us draw nigh.Matchless in might, The glory late of Ifrael, now the grief;
We come thy friends and neighbours not unknown From Efhtaol and Zora's fruitful vale 181
To vifit or bewail thee, or if better,
Counsel or confolation we may bring,
Salve to thy fores; apt words have pow'r to fwage
And are as balm to fefter'd wounds.
Sams. Your coming, Friends, revives me, for I learn
Bear in their superscription, (of the most
They fwarm, but in adverse withdraw their head,
Who haft of forrow thy full load befides;
Yet truth to fay, I oft have heard men wonder 215 Why thou shouldst wed Philistian women rather Than of thine own tribe fairer, or as fair,
At least of thy own nation, and as noble.
That specious monster, my accomplish'd fnare. 230
Who vanquish'd with a peal of words (O weakness!) Gave up my fort of filence to a woman. 235
Chor. In feeking just occasion to provoke
Sams. That fault I take not on me, but transfer On Ifrael's governors, and heads of tribes,
Who seeing thofe great acts, which God had done Singly by me against their conquerors, Acknowledg'd not, or not at all confider'd
Deliverance offer'd: I on th' other side
Us'd no ambition to commend my deeds, (doer; The deeds themselves, though mute, spoke loud the But they perfisted deaf, and would not seem 249 To count them things worth notice, till at length Their lords the Philistines with gather'd pow'rs Enter'd Judea feeking me, who then Safe to the rock of Etham was retir'd, Not flying, but fore-cafting in what place To fet upon them, what advantag'd best: Mean while the men of Judah, to prevent The harrafs of their land, beset me round; I willingly on fome conditions came Into their hands, and they as gladly yield me To the uncircumcis'd a welcome prey, 260 Bound with two cords; but cords to me were threds Touch'd with the flame: on their whole host I flew Unarm'd, and with a trivial weapon fell'd Their choiceft youth; they only liv'd who fled. Had Judah that day join'd, or one whole tribe, 265 They had by this poffefs'd the tow'rs of Gath, And lorded over them whom now they serve: But what more oft in nations grown corrupt, And by their vices brought to fervitude, Than to love bondage more than liberty, Bondage with ease than strenuous liberty; And to despise, or envy, or suspect Whom God hath of his special favor rais'd
As their deliverer; if he ought begin,
But God's propos'd deliverance not fo.
Unless there be who think not God at all:
If any be, they walk obfcure;
For of fuch doctrin never was their school,
But the heart of the fool,
And no man therein doctor but himself.
Yet more there be who doubt his ways not juft, 300 As to his own edicts found contradicting,