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Raphael continues to relate how Michael and Gabriel were sent forth to battle against Satan and his angels.

The first fight described. Satan and his powers retire under night. He calls a council, inventa devilish engines, which in the second day's fight put Michael and his angels to some disorder ; but they at length, pulling up mountains, overwhelmed both the force and machines of Satan. Yet the tumult not so endling, God on the third day sends Messiah his Son, for whom he had reserved the glory of that victory: He, in the poner of his Father, coming to the place, and causing all his legions to stand still on either side, with his chariot and thunder driving into the midst of his enemies, pursues them, unable to resist, towards the wall of heaven; which opening, they leap down with horror and confusion into the place of punishment prepared for them in the deep. Messiah returns with triumph to his Father.

“ALL night the dreadless angel, unpursued, Equal in number to that godless crew Through heaven's wide champain held his way; Rebellious; then with fire and hostile arms 50 till morn,

Fearless assault, and to the brow of heaven Wak'd by the circling hours, with rosy hand Pursuing, drive them out from God and bliss Unbarr'd the gates of light. There is a cave Into their place of punishment, the gulf Within the mount of God, fast by his throne, 5 Of Tartarus, which ready opens wide Where light and darkness in perpetual round His fiery Chaos to receive their fall."

55 Lodge and dislodge by turns, which makes through Grateful vicissitude, like day and night; [heaven “So spake the Sovereign voice, and clouds began Light issues forth, and at the other door

9 To darken all the hill, and smoke to roll Obsequious darkness enters, till her hour (well In dusky wreaths, reluctant flames, the sign To veil the heaven, though darkness there might Of wrath awak'd, nor with less dread the loud Seem twilight here : and now went forth the morn, Ethereal trumpet from on liigh 'gan blow : 60 Such as in highest heaven, array'd in gold

At which command the powers militant, Empyreal; from before her vanish'd night,

That stood for beaven, in mighty quadrate join'd
Shot thro' with orient beams; when all the plain, Of union irresistible, mov'd on
Cover'd with thick embattled squadrons bright, 16 In silence their bright legions, to the sound
Chariots, and flaming arms, and fiery steeds, Of instrumental harmony, that breath'd 65
Reflecting blaze on blaze, first met his

view. Heroic ardour to advent'rous deeds,
War he perceiv'd, war in procinct, and found, Under their godlike leaders, in the cause
Already known, what he for news had thought 20 Of God and his Messiah. On they move
To have reported : gladly then he mix'd

Indissolubly firm; nor obvious hill,

69 Among those friendly powers, who him receiv'd Nor strait'ning vale, nor wood, nor stream divides With joy and acclamations loud, that one,

Their perfect ranks; for high above the ground That of so many myriads fallen, yet one

Their march was, and the passive air upbore Return'd not lost. On to the sacred hill 25 Their nimble tread; as when the total kind They led him high applauded, and present

Of birds, in orderly array, on wing, Before the seat supreme; from whence a voice, Came, summond over Eden, to receive 75 From midst a golden cloud, thus mild was heard : Their names of tiree ; so over many a tract

Of heaven they march'd, and many a province wide, **Servant of God! well done, well hast thou Tenfold the length of this terrene. At last, fought

Far in th' horizon, to the north, appear'd
The better fight, who single hast maintain'd 30 From skirt to skirt a fiery region, stretch'd SO
Against revolted multitudes the cause

In battailous aspect, and nearer view
Of truth, in word mightier than they in arms; Bristled with upright beams innumerable
And for the testimony of truth hast borne

Of rigid spears, and helmets throng'd, and shields Universal reproach, far worse to bear

Various, with boastful argument portray'd Than violence; for this was all thy care 35 The banded powers of Satan, hasiing on 85 To stand approv'd, in sight of God, though worlds With furious expedition ; for they ween'd Judg'd thee perverse: the easier conquest now That self-same day, by fight, or by surprise, Remains thee, aided by this host of friends,

To win the mount of God, and on his throne Back on thy foes more glorious to return,

To get the envier of his state, the proud Than scorn'd thou didst depart, and to subdue 40 Aspirer; but their thoughts prov'd fond and vain By force, who reason for their law refuse,

In the midway: though strange to us it seem'd 91 Right reason for their law, and for their king At first, that angel should with angel war, Messiah, who by right of merit reigns.

And in fierce hosüing meet, who wont to meet Go, Michael, of celestial armies prince,

So oft in festivals of joy and love And thou, in military prowess next,

45 Unanimous, as sons of one great sire, Gabriel, lead forth to battle these my sons

Hymning theternal Father. But the shout 95 Invincible; lead forth my armed saints,

of battle
now began, and rushing

sound By thousands and by millions rang'd for fight, Of onset ended soon each milder



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High in the midst, exalted as a god,
Th' apostate in his sun-bright chariot sat,
Idol of majesty divine, enclos'd

With flaming cherubim and golden shields;
Then lighted from his gorgeous throne, for now
"Twixt host and host but narrow space was left,
A dreadful interval, and front to front
Presented stood in terrible array


Yet lewdly dar'st our minist'ring upbraid. 100 Reign thou in hell, thy kingdom; let me serve In heaven God ever bless'd and his divine Behests obey, worthiest to be obey'd; Yet chains in hell, not realms expect: meanwhile From me return'd, as erst thou saidst, from flight, This greeting on thy impious crest receive.'



Of hideous length: before the cloudy van,
On the rough edge of battle ere it join'd,
Satan, with vast and haughty strides, advanc'd,
Came tow'ring, arm'd in adamant and gold.
Abdiel that sight endur'd not, where he stood
Among the mightiest, bent on highest deeds,
And thus his own undaunted heart explores:
"O heaven! that such resemblance of the

Should yet remain, where faith and realty 115 Remain not: wherefore should not strength and might

There fail where virtue fails, or weakest prove
Where boldest, though to sight unconquerable?
His puissance, trusting in th' Almighty's aid,
I mean to try, whose reason I have tried
Unsound and false; nor is it ought but just,
That he who in debate of truth hath won,
Should win in arms, in both disputes alike
Victor; though brutish that contest and foul,'
When reason hath to deal with force, yet so
Most reason is that reason overcome.'

"So pondering, and from his arm'd peers
Forth stepping opposite, half way he met
His daring foe, at this prevention more
Incens'd, and thus securely him defied:



"Proud, art thou met? thy hope was to have reach'd

The height of thy aspiring unoppos'd,
The throne of God unguarded, and his side
Abandon'd at the terror of thy power

Or potent tongue: fool, not to think how vain 135
Against th' Omnipotent to rise in arms;
Who out of smallest things could without end
Have rais'd incessant armies to defeat
Thy folly; or with solitary hand,

"So saying, a noble stroke he lifted high, Which hung not, but so swift with tempest fell 190 On the proud crest of Satan, that no sight, Nor motion of swift thought, less could his shield, Such ruin intercept: ten paces huge


201 [heaven vast of


Reaching beyond all limit, at one blow
Unaided could have finish'd thee, and whelm'd
Thy legions under darkness. But thou seest


All are not of thy train; there be who faith
Prefer, and piety to God, though then

To thee not visible, when I alone
Seem'd in thy world erroneous to dissent
From all my sect thou seest; now learn too late
How few sometimes may know, when thousands


"Whom the grand foe, with scornful eye askance, Thus answer'd: Ill for thee, but in wish'd hour Of my revenge, first sought for, thou return'st 151 From flight, seditious angel, to receive Thy merited reward, the first assay


Of this right hand provok'd, since first that tongue,

Inspir'd with contradiction, durst oppose


A third part of the gods, in synod met

Their deities to assert, who, while they feel

Vigour divine within them, can allow

Omnipotence to none. But well thou com'st Before thy fellows, ambitious to win


From me some plume, that thy success may show
Destruction to the rest: this pause between
(Unanswer'd lest thou boast) to let thee know;
At first I thought that liberty and heaven

To heavenly souls had been all one; but now 165
I see that most through sloth had rather serve,
Minist'ring spirits, train'd up in feast and song;
Such hast thou arm'd, the minstrelsy of heaven,
Servility with freedom to contend,


As both their deeds compar'd this day shall prove.'

"To whom in brief thus Abdiel stern replied:
'Apostate, still thou err'st, nor end wilt find
Of erring, from the path of truth remote:
Unjustly thou deprav'st it with the name
Of servitude, to serve whom God ordains,
Or Nature; God and Nature bid the same,
When he who rules worthiest, and excels
Them whom he governs. This is servitude,
To serve th' unwise, or him who hath rebell'd
Against his worthier, as thine now serve thee, 180
Thyself not free, but to thyself inthral'd;

"Author of evil, unknown till thy revolt, Unnam'd in heaven, now plenteous, as thou seest These acts of hateful strife, hateful to all,

175 Though heaviest by just measure on thyself
And thy adherents: how hast thou disturb'd
Heaven's blessed peace, and into nature brought
Misery, uncreated till the crime

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He back recoil'd; the tenth on bended knee
His massy spear upstay'd; as if on earth
Winds under ground, or waters forcing way,
Sidelong had push'd a mountain from his seat,
Half sunk with all his pines. Amazement seiz'd
The rebel thrones, but greater rage to see [shout,
Thus foil'd their mightiest; ours joy fill'd, and
Presage of victory, and fierce desire
Of battle: whereat Michael bid sound
Th' archangel trumpet: through the
It sounded, and the faithful armies rung
Hosannah to th' Highest; nor stood at gaze
The adverse legions, nor less hideous join'd
The horrid shock. Now storming fury rose,
And clamour such as heard in heaven till now
Was never; arms on armour clashing bray'd
Horrible discord, and the madding wheels
Of brazen chariots rag'd; dire was the noise
Of conflict; over head the dismal hiss
Of fiery darts in flaming vollies flew,
And flying, vaulted either host with fire.
So under fiery cope together rush'd
Both battles main, with ruinous assault
And inextinguishable rage; all heaven
Resounded, and had earth been then, all earth
Had to her centre shook. What wonder? when
Millions of fierce encount'ring angels fought
On either side, the least of whom could wield
These elements, and arm him with the force
Of all their regions: how much more of power
Army' against army numberless to raise
Dreadful combustion warring, and disturb,
Though not destroy, their happy native seat;
Had not th' eternal King omnipotent
From his strong hold of heaven high overrul'd
And limited their might; though number'd such
As each divided legion might have seem'd
A numerous host, in strength each armed hand
A legion, led in fight, yet leader seem'd,
Each warrior single as in chief, expert
When to advance, or stand, or turn the sway
Of battle, open when, and when to close
The ridges of grim war: no thought of flight,
None of retreat, no unbecoming deed
That argued fear; each on himself relied,
As only in his arm the moment lay
Of victory. Deeds of eternal fame
Were done, but infinite; for wide was spread
That war and various, sometimes on firm ground
A standing fight, then, soaring on main wing,
Tormented all the air; all air seem'd then
Conflicting fire. Long time in even scale
The battle hung; till Satan, who that day
Prodigious power had shown, and met in arms
No equal, ranging through the dire attack
Of fighting seraphim confus'd, at length
Saw where the sword of Michael smote, and fell'd
Squadrons at once: with huge two-handed sway,
Brandish'd aloft, the horrid edge came down
Wide wasting; such destruction to withstand
He hasted, and oppos'd the rocky orb
Of tenfold adamant, his ample shield,
A vast circumference. At his approach
The great archangel from his warlike toil
Surceas'd, and glad, as hoping here to end
Intestine war in heaven, th' arch-foe subdu'd,
Or captive dragg'd in chains, with hostile frown,
And visage all inflam'd, first thus began:











To trouble holy rest; heaven casts thee out Down cloven to the waist, with shatter'd arms From all her confines. Heaven the seat of bliss, And unoouth pain, fled bellowing. On each wing Brooks not the works of violence and war :

Uriel and Raphael his vaunting foe, Hence then, and evil go with thee along, 275 Though huge, and in a rock of diamond armid, Thy offspring, to the place of evil, hell,

Vanquish'd Adramelech and Asmadai, 365 Thou and thy wicked crew; there mingle broils, Two potent

thrones, that to be less than gods Ere this avenging sword begin thy doom,

Disdain'd, but meaner thoughts learn'd in their Or some more sudden vengeance wing'd from God

flight, Precipitate thee with augmented pain!" 280 Mangled with ghastly wounds thro' plate and mai.

Nor stood unmindful Abdiel to annoy “ So spake the prince of angels; to whom thus The atheist crew, but with redoubled blow 370 The adversary: Nor think thou with wind Ariel and Arioch, and the violence Of airy threats to awe whom yet with deeds

Of Ramiel, scorch'd and blasted, overthrew. Thou canst not. Hast thou turn'd the least of these I might relate of thousands, and their names To flight, or if to fall, but that they rise 285 Eternize here on earth; but those elect Unvanquish'd, easier to transact with me (threats Angels, contented with their fame in heaven, 375 That thou shouldst hope, imperious, and with Seek not the praise of men : the other sort, To chase me hence ? err not that so shall end In might though wondrous, and in acts of war, The strife which thou call'st evil, but we style Nor of renown less eager, yet by doom The strife of glory; which we mean to win, 290 Cancel'd from heaven and sacred memory, Or turn this heaven itself into the hell

Nameless in dark oblivion let them dwell. Thou fablest, here however to dwell free,

For strength, from truth divided and from just, If not to reign : meanwhile thy utmost force, Illaudable, nought merits but dispraise And join him nam'd Almighty to thy aid,

And ignominy, yet to glory' aspires I fly not, but have sought thee far and nigh.' 295

Vain glorious, and through infamy seeks fame :

Therefore eternal silence be their doom. 885 “They ended parle, and both address'd for fight Unspeakable ; for whó, though with the tongue “ And now their mightiest quell'd, the battle Of angels, can relate, or to what things

swerv'd, Liken on earth conspicuous, that may lift

With many an inroad gor'd; deformed rout Human imagination to such height

300 Enter'd, and foul disorder; all the ground Of godlike power? for likest gods they seemid, With shiver'd armour strown, and on a heap Stood they or mov'd, in stature, motion, arms, Chariot and charioteer lay overturn'd, 390 Fit to decide the empire of great heaven.

And fiery foaming steeds; what stood, recoild, Now wav'd their fiery swords, and in the air O'erwearied, through the faint Satanic host Made horrid circles; two broad suns their shields' Defensive scarce, or with pale fear surpris'd, Blaz'd opposite, while expectation stood 306 Then first with fear surpris'd and sense of pain, In horror; from each hand with speed retir'd, Fled ignominious, to such evil brought 395 Where erst was thickest fight, th' angelic throng, By sin of disobedience, till that hour And left large fields, unsafe within the wind Not liable to fear, or flight, or pain. Of such commotion such as, to set forth 310 Far otherwise, th' inviolable saints Great things by small, if Nature's concord broke In cubic phalanx firm advanc'd entire, Among the constellations war were sprung, Invulnerable, impenetrably arm'd;

400 Two planets rushing from aspect malign

Such high advantages their innocence Of fiercest opposition in mid-sky

Gave them above their foes, not to have sinn'd, Should combat, and their jarring spheres confound Not to have disobey'd; in fight they stood Together both with next t Almighty arm 316 Unwearied, unobnoxious to be pain'd

404 Uplifted eminent, one stroke they aim'd

By wound, tho' from their place by violence mov'd. That might determine, and not need repeat, As not of power at once; nor odds appear'd

“Now night her course began, and over heaven In might or swift prevention: but the sword 320 Inducing darkness, grateful truce impos'd, Of Michael, from the armoury of God,

And silence on the odious din of war: Was given him temper'd so, that neither keen Under her cloudy covert both retird, Nor solid might resist that edge: it met

Victor and vanquish'd. On the foughten field 410 The sword of Satan with steep force to smite Michael and his angels prevalent Descending, and in half cut sheer; nor stay'd, 325 Incamping, plac'd in guard their watches round, But with swift wheel reverse, deep entring, shar'd Cherubic waving fires : on th' other part All his right side: then Satan first knew pain, Satan with his rebellious disappear'd, And writh'd him to and fro convolv'd; so sore Far in the dark dislodg'd; and, void of rest, 415 The griding sword with discontinuous wound His potentates to council call's by night; Pass thro' him; but th' ethereal substance clos'd. And in the midst thus undismay'd began. Not long divisible; and from the gash

331 A stream of nect'rous humour issuing flow'd

“O now in danger tried, now known in arms Sanguine, such as celestial spirits may bleed, Not to be overpower'd, companions dear, And all his armour stain'd ere while so bright. Found worthy not of liberty alone,

420 Forth with on all sides to his aid was run 335 Too mean pretence, but, what we more affect, By angels many' and strong, who interpos'd Honour, dominion, glory, and renown; Defence, while others bore him on their shields Who have sustain'd one day in doubtful fight Back to his chariot, where it stood retir'd

(And if one day, why not eternal days ?) Froin off the files of war; there they him laid What heaven's Lord had powerfullest to send 425 Gnashing for anguish, and despite, and shame, 340 Against us from about his throne, and judg'd To find himself not matchless, and his pride

Sufficient to subdue us to his will, Humbled by such rebuke, so far beneath

But proves not so: then fallible, it seems, His confidence to equal God in power.

Of future we may deem him, though till now Yet soon he heal'd; for spirits that live throughout Omniscient thought. True is, less firmly arni'd, Vital in every part, not as frail man

345 Some disadvantage we endur'd and pain, 451 In entrails, heart or head, liver or reins,

Till now not known, but known, as soon contemu'd; Cannot but by annihilating die;

Since now we find this our empyreal form Nor in their liquid texture mortal wound

Incapable of mortal injury, Receive, no more than can the fluid air:

Imperishable, and, though pierc'd with wound, 135
All heart they live, all head, all eye, all ear, 350 Soon closing, and by native vigour heal'd.
All intellect, all sense; and as they please,

Of evil then so small, as easy think
They limb themselves, and colour, shape, or size, The remedy; perhaps more valid arms,
Assume, as likes them best, condense or rare. Weapons more violent, when next we meet,

May serve to better us, and worse our foes, 440
“ Meanwhile in other parts like deeds deserv'd Or equal what between us made the odds,
Memorial, where the might of Gabriel fought, 355 In nature none: if other hidden cause
And with fierce ensigns pierc'd the deep array Ieft them superior, while we can preserve
Of Moloch, furious king; who him defied,

Unhurt our minds and understanding sound, And at his chariot-wheels to drag him bound Due search and consultation will disclose. Threaten'd, nor from the Holy One of heaven Refrain'd his tongue blasphemous; but anon, 360 “ He sat; and in th' assembly next upstood


Nisroch, of principalities the prime;
As one he stood escap'd from cruel fight,
Sore toil'd, his riven arms to havoc hewn,
And cloudy in aspect thus answ'ring spake:
Deliverer from new Lords, leader to free
Enjoyment of our right as gods; yet hard
For gods, and too unequal work we find,
Against unequal arms to fight in pain,
Against unpain'd, impassive; from which evil 455
Ruin must needs ensue; for what avails [pain
Valour or strength, though matchless, quell'd with
Which all subdues, and makes remiss the hands
Of mightiest? Sense of pleasure we may well
Spare out of life perhaps, and not repine,
But live content, which is the calmest life:
But pain is perfect misery, the worst
Of evils, and excessive, overturns

All patience. He who therefore can invent With what more forcible we may offend Our yet unwounded enemies, or arm Ourselves with like defence, to me deserves No less than for deliverance what we owe.'






"Whereto with look compos'd Satan replied: 'Not uninvented that, which thou aright Believ'st so main to our success, I bring. Which of us who beholds the bright surface Of this ethereous mould whereon we stand, This continent of spacious heaven, adorn'd With plant, fruit, flower ambrosial, gems, and gold; Whose eye so superficially surveys [grow These things, as not to mind from whence they Deep under ground, materials dark and crude, Of spiritous and fiery spume, till touch'd With heaven's ray, and temper'd, they shoot forth So beauteous, opening to the ambient light? These in their dark nativity the deep Shall yield us pregnant with infernal flame; Which into hollow engines long and round Thick-ramm'd, at th' other bore with touch of fire Dilated and infuriate, shall send forth 486 From far, with thund'ring noise, among our foes Such implements of mischief, as shall dash To pieces, and o'erwhelm whatever stands Adverse, that they shall fear we have disarm'd 490 The Thund'rer of his only dreaded bolt. Nor long shall be our labour; yet ere dawn Effect shall end our wish. Meanwhile revive; Abandon fear; to strength and counsel join'd 494 Think nothing hard, much less to be despair'd.'


"He ended, and his words their drooping cheer Enlighten'd, and their languish'd hope reviv'd. Th' invention all admir'd, and each how he To be th' inventor miss'd; so easy' it seem'd 499 Once found, which yet unfound, most would have Impossible yet haply of thy race, [thought In future days, if malice should abound, Some one, intent on mischief, or inspir'd With devilish machination, might devise Like instrument to plague the sons of men For sin, on war and mutual slaughter bent. Forthwith from council to the work they flew ; None arguing stood; innumerable hands Were ready; in a moment up they turn'd Wide the celestial soil, and saw beneath Th' originals of nature in their crude Conception; sulphurous and nitrous foam They found, they mingled, and with subtle art, Concocted and adusted, they reduc'd To blackest grain, and into store convey'd: Part hidden veins digg'd up (nor hath this earth Entrails unlike) of mineral and stone, Whereof to found their engines and their balls Of missive ruin; part incentive reed


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"Arm, warriors, arm for fight; the foe at hand, Whom fled we thought, will save us long pursuit This day; fear not his flight; so thick a cloud He comes, and settled in his face I see Sad resolution and secure; let each His adamantine coat gird well, and each Fit well his helm, gripe fast his orbed shield, Borne even or high; for this day will pour down, If I conjecture ought, no drizzling shower, But rattling storm of arrows barb'd with fire.'


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"Vanguard, to right and left the front unfold;
That all may see who hate us, how we seek
Peace and composure, and with open breast 560
Stand ready to receive them, if they like
Our overture, and turn not back perverse:
But that I doubt; however, witness heaven,
Heaven witness thou anon, while we discharge
Freely our part; ye who appointed stand,
Do as you have in charge, and briefly touch
What we propound, and loud that all may hear.'

"So scoffing in ambiguous words, he scarce
Had ended, when to right and left the front
Divided, and to either flank retir'd;
Which to our eyes discover'd, new and strange,
A triple mounted row of pillars laid



On wheels (for like to pillars most they seem'd,
Or hollow'd bodies made of oak or fir,
With branches lopt, in wood or mountain fell'd) 573
Brass, iron, stony mould, had not their mouths
With hideous orifice gap'd on us wide,
Portending hollow truce: at each behind
A seraph stood, and in his hand a reed
Stood waving tipt with fire; while we suspense 58C
Collected stood within our thoughts amus'd;
Not long, for sudden all at once their reeds
Put forth, and to a narrow vent applied
With nicest touch. Immediate in a flame,
But soon obscur'd with smoke, all heaven appear'd,
From those deep-throated engines belch'd, whose
Embowel'd with outrageous noise the air, [roar
And all her entrails tore, disgorging foul'
Their devilish glut, chain'd thunderbolts and hail
Of iron globes; which on the victor host
Levell'd, with such impeteous fury smote,
That whom they hit, none on their feet might




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By quick contraction or remove; but now
Foul dissipation follow'd and forc'd rout;
Nor serv'd it to relax their serried files.
What should they do? if on they rush'd, repulse
Repeated, and indecent overthrow


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Doubled, would render them yet more despis'd,
And to their foes a laughter; for in view
Stood rank'd of seraphim another row,
In posture to displode their second tire
Of thunder: back defeated to return
They worse abhorr'd. Satan beheld their plight,
And to his mates thus in derision call'd:


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"So they among themselves in pleasant vein
Stood scoffing, heighten'd in their thoughts beyond
All doubt of victory; eternal might
To match with their inventions they presum'd
So easy, and of his thunder made a scorn,
And all his host derided, while they stood
Awhile in trouble: but they stood not long;
Rage prompted them at length, and found them
Against such hellish mischief fit t' oppose.
Forthwith (behold the excellence, the power,
Which God hath in his mighty angels plac'd)
Their arms away they threw, and to the hills
(For earth hath this variety from heaven
Of pleasure situate in hill and dale,)
Light as the lightning glimpse they ran, they flew :
From their foundations loos'ning to and fro
They pluck'd the seated hills with all their load,
Rocks, waters, woods, and by the shaggy tops 645
Uplifting bore them in their hands. Amaze,
Be sure, and terror seiz'd the rebel host,
When coming towards them so dread they saw
The bottom of the mountains upward turn'd;
Till on those cursed engines triple-row
They saw them whelm'd, and all their confidence
Under the weight of mountains buried deep;
Themselves invaded next, and on their heads
Main promontories flung, which in the air
Came shadowing, and oppress'd whole legions
Their armour help'd their harm, crush'd in and
Into their substance pent, which wrought them pain
Implacable, and many a dolorous groan,
Long struggling underneath, ere they could wind
Out of such prison, though spirits of purest light,
Purest at first, now gross by sinning grown.
The rest, in imitation, to like arms





By sacred unction, thy deserved right.
Go then, thou Mightiest, in thy Father's might, 710
Ascend my chariot, guide the rapid wheels
That shake heaven's basis, bring forth all my war,
My bow and thunder, my almighty arms
Gird on, and sword upon thy puissant thigh;
Pursue these sons of darkness, drive them out 715
From all heaven's bounds into the utter deep:
There let them learn, as likes them, to despise
God, and Messiah his, anointed King.'

"He said, and on his Son with rays direct
Shone full; he all his Father full express'd
Ineffably into his face receiv'd;
And thus the filial Godhead answ'ring spake :




"O Father, O supreme of heav'nly thrones,
First, highest, holiest, best! thou always seek'st
To glorify thy Son, I always thee,
As is most just; this I my glory' account,
My exaltation, and my whole delight,
That thou in me, well pleas'd, declar'st thy will
Fulfill'd, which to fulfil is all my bliss.
Sceptre and power, thy giving, I assume,
And gladlier shall resign, when in the end
Thou shalt be all in all, and I in thee
For ever, and in me all whom thou lov'st:
But whom thou hat'st I hate, and can put on
Thy terrors, as I put thy mildness on,
Image of thee in all things; and shall soon,
Arm'd with thy might, rid heaven of these rebell'd,
To their prepar'd ill mansion driven down,
To chains of darkness, and th' undying worm,
That from thy just obedience could revolt,
Whom to obey is happiness entire.



Then shall thy saints unmix'd, and from th' impure
Far separate, circling thy holy mount,
Unfeigned hallelujahs to thee sing,
Hymns of high praise, and I among them chief.'

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670 Of beryl, and careering fires between;


Betook them, and the neighb'ring hills uptore;
So hills amid the air encounter'd hills,
Hurl'd to and fro with jaculation dire,
That under ground they fought in dismal shade;
Infernal noise; war seem'd a civil game
To this uproar; horrid confusion heap'd
Upon confusion rose. And now all heaven
Had gone to wrack, with ruin overspread,
Had not th' almighty Father, where he sits
Shrin'd in his sanctuary of heaven secure,
Consulting on the sum of things, foreseen
This tumult, and permitted all, advis'd;
That his great purpose he might so fulfil,
To honour his anointed Son aveng'd
Upon his enemies, and to declare

All power on him transferr'd: whence to his Son,
Th'assessor of his throne, he thus began:

"Effulgence of my glory, Son belov'd, Son, in whose face invisible is beheld, Visibly, what by deity I am,


Cver their heads a crystal firmament,
Whereon a sapphire throne inlaid with pure
Amber, and colours of the showery arch.
He in celestial panoply all arm'd




675 Of radiant Urim, work divinely wrought,
Ascended; at his right hand victory
Sat eagle-wing'd; beside him hung his bow
And quiver with three-bolted thunder stor'd,
And from about him fierce effusion roll'd
Of smoke and bickering flame and sparkles dire:
680 Attended with ten thousand thousand saints
He onward came, far off his coming shone ;
And twenty thousand (I their number heard)
Chariots of God, half on each hand were seen: 770
He on the wings of cherub rode sublime
On the crystalline sky, in sapphire thron'd,
Illustrious far and wide, but by his own
First seen; them unexpected joy surpris'd,
When the great ensign of Messiah blaz'd
Aloft by angels borne, his sign in heaven;
Under whose conduct Michael soon reduc'd
His army, circumfus'd on either wing,
Under their head embodied all in one.
Before him power divine his way prepar'd:
At his command th' uprooted hills retir'd
Each to his place; they heard his voice, and went
Obsequious; heaven his wonted face renew'd,
And with fresh flowerets hill and valley smil'd.
This saw his hapless foes, but stood obdur'd,
And to rebellious fight rallied their powers
Insensate, hope conceiving from despair.
In heavenly spirits could such perverseness dwell,
But to convince the proud what signs avail,
Or wonders move, th' obdurate to relent? 790
They, harden'd more by what might most reclaim,
Grieving to see his glory, at the sight
Took envy; and, aspiring to his height,
Stood re-embattled fierce, by force or fraud
Weening to prosper, and at length prevail

And in whose hand what by decree I do,
Second Omnipotence; two days are past,
Two days, as we compute the days of heaven,
Since Michael and his powers went forth to tame
These disobedient: sore hath been their fight,
As likeliest was, when two such foes met arm'd;
For to themselves I left them, and thou know'st,
Equal in their creation they were form'd, 690
Save what sin hath impair'd, which yet hath
Insensibly, for I suspend their doom; [wrought
Whence in perpetual fight they needs must last
Endless, and no solution will be found.
War wearied hath perform'd what war can do, 695
And to disorder'd rage let loose the reins, [makes
With mountains as with weapons arm'd, which
Wild work in heaven, and dangerous to the main.
Two days are therefore pass'd, the third is thine;
For thee I have ordain'd it, and thus far
Have suffer'd, that the glory may be thine
Of ending this great war, since none but Thou
Can end it. Into thee such virtue and grace
Immense I have transfus'd, that all may know
In heaven and hell thy power above compare; 705
And this perverse commotion govern'd thus,
To manifest thee worthiest to be Heir
Of all things, to be Heir, and to be King

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