Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

Conflicting fire : long time in even scale
The battle hung ; till Satan, who that day
Prodigious power had thewn, and met in arms
No equal, raunging through the dire attack
Of fighting seraphim confus'd, at length
Saw where the fword of Michael smote, and felld
Squadrons at once, with huge two-handed fway
Brandisht aloft the horrid edge came down
Wide wasting ; 'such deftruction to withstand
He häfted, and oppos'd the rockie orb
Of tenfold adamiant, his ample Thield
A vast circumference : at his approach
The great arch-angel from his warlike toil
Surceas’d, and glad as hoping here to end
Intestine war in heav'n, the archfoe subdu'd
Or captive drag‘d in chains, with hostile frown
And visage all enflam'd first 'thus began.
Author of evil, unknown till thy revolt,
Unnam'd in 'heav'n, now plenteous, as "thou leeft
These acts of kateful strife, hätěful to all,
Though 'heaviest by juft measure on thyself
And thy adherents : how håst thou disturba
Heav'n's blessed peace, and into nature brought
Miserie, uncreated till the crime
Of thy rebellion ? 'how 'hast thou instilla
Thy malice into thousands, önce 'upright
And fạithful, now prov'd'fásse. Bút think not here
To trouble holy rest; heav'n casts thee out
From all her confines. Heav'n the seat of bliss
Brooks not the works of violence and war,
Hence then, and evil go with thee along

Thy ofspring, to the place of evil, hell,
Thou and thy wicked crew; there mingle broiles,
Ere this avenging sword begin thy doome,
Or some more sudden vengeance wing'd from God
Precipitate thee with augmented pain.

So spake the prince of angels ; to whom thus
The adversarie. Nor think thou with wind
Of airie threats to awe whom yet with deeds
Thou canst not. Hast thou turn'd the least of these
To flight, or if to fall, but that they rise
Unvanquisht, easier to transact with me
That thou shouldst hope, imperious, and with threats
To chase me hence ? erre'not, 'that fo Thall end
* The strife which thou call'st evil, but we style
The strife of glorie: which we mean to win,
Or turn this heav'n itself into the hell
Thou fablest, here however to dwell free,
If not to reign : mean while thy utmost force,
And, join him nam'd Almighty to thy aid,
I fie not, but have sought 'thee far and nigh.
They ended parle, and both addrest for fight
Unspeakable ; for who, though with the tongue
Of angels, can relate, or to what things
Liken on earth conspicuous, that may-lift
Human imagination to such highth
Of godlike power : for likest gods they seem'd,
Stood they or mov'd, in ftature, motion, arms
Fit to decide the empire of great heav'n.
Now wav'd their fierie swords, and in the air
Made horrid circles ; two broad suns their shields
Blaz'd opposite, while expectation stood

In horror ; from each hand with speed retir'd
Where erft was thickest fight, th'angelic throng,
And left large field, unsafe within the wind
Of such commotion, such as to fet forth
Great things by small, if natures concord broke,
Among the constellations war were sprung,
Two planets rushing from aspect maligne
Of fiercest opposition in mid lkie,
Should combat, and their jarring spheres confound.
Together both with next to Almightie arm,
Uplifted imminent one stroke they aim'd
That might determine, and not need repeate,
As not of power, at once ; nor odds appeer'd
In might or swift prevention ;. but the sword
Of Michael from the armorie of God
Was giv'n him temper'd so, that neither keen
Nor solid might resist that edge: it met
The sword of Satan with steep force to smite
Descending, and in half cut sheere, nor said,
But with swift wheele reverse, deep entring shar'd
All his Mght side ; then Satan first knew pain,
And writh'd him to and fro convolv'd; so sore
The griding sword with discontinuous wound
Pass'd through him, but th'ethereal substance clos'd
Not long divisible, and from the gash
A stream of nectareous humor issuing flow'd
Sanguin, such as celestial spirits may bleed,
And all his armour stain'd ere while fo bright.
Forthwith on all sides to his aid was run
By angels many and strong, who interpos'd
Defence, while others bore him on their shields

Back to his chariot ; where it stood retir'd
From off the files of war ; there they him laid
Gnashing for anguish and despite and shame
To find himself not matchless, and his pride
Humbl’d by such rebuke, so far beneath
His confidence to equal God in power.
Yet soon he heal’d; for spirits that live throughout
Vital in every part, not as frail man
In entrailes, heart or head, liver or reines,
Cannot but by annihilating die ;
Nor in their liquid texture mortal wound
Receive, no more than can the fluid air :
All heart they live, all head, all eye, all ear,
All intellect, all sense, and as they please,
They limb themselves, and colour, shape or size
Allume, as likes them best, condense or rare.

Mean while in other parts like deeds deserv'd
Memorial, where the might of Gabriel fought,
And with fierce ensignes pierc'd the deep array
Of Moloc' furious king, who him defi'd,
And at his chariot wheels to drag him bound
Threatn’d, nor from the holie one of heav'n
Refrein'd his tongue blasphemous; but anon
Down cloven to the waste, with shatter'd arms
And uncouth pain fled bellowing. On each wing
Uriel and Raphael his vaunting foe,
Though huge, and in a rock of diamond arm’d,
Vanquish'd Adramelec, and Asmadai,
Two potent thrones, that to be less then gods
Disdain'd, but meaner thoughts learn'd in their flight,
Mangl’d with gastly wounds through plate and maile,
Nor stood unmindful Abdiel to annoy
The atheist crew, but with redoubld blow
Ariel and Arioc, and the violence
Of Ramiel scorcht and blasted overthrew.
I might relate of thoufands, and their names
Eternize here on earth ; bút those elect
Angels contented with their fame in heav'n
Seek not the praise of men : the other fort
In might though wondrous and in acts of war,
Nor of renown less eager, yet by doome
Cancel'd from heavin and sacred memorie,
Nameless in dark oblivion let them dwell.
For strength from truth divided and from juft,
Illaudable, naught merits but dispraise
And ignominie, yet to glorie aspires
Vain glorious, and through infamie seek fame:
Therefore eternal Glence be their doome.

And now their mightiest quell'd, the battle fwervd,
With many an inrod gor'd ; deformed rout
Enter'd, and foul disorder; all the ground
With shiver'd armour Itrown, and on a heap
Chariot, and charioteer lay overturn'd
And fiery foaming steeds ; what stood, recoyl'd
Orewearied, through the faint fatanic host
Defenfive scarce, or with pale fear furpris’d,
Then first with fear furpris’d and sense of pain
Fled ignominious, to such evil brought
By sin of disobedience, till that hour
Not liable to fear or Alight or pain.
Far otherwise the inviolable faints
In cubic phalanx firm advanc't entire,

« НазадПродовжити »