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Paradise Lost in Plain English
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Paradise Lost

~ BOOK VI ~

  1. All night the dreadless Angel unpursu'd
  2. Through Heav'ns wide Champain held his way, till Morn,
  3. Wak't by the circling Hours, with rosie hand
  4. Unbarr'd the gates of Light. There is a Cave
  5. Within the Mount of God, fast by his Throne,
  6. Where light and darkness in perpetual round
  7. Lodge and dislodge by turns, which makes through Heav'n
  8. Grateful vicissitude, like Day and Night;
  9. Light issues forth, and at the other dore
  10. Obsequious darkness enters, till her houre
  11. To veile the Heav'n, though darkness there might well
  12. Seem twilight here; and now went forth the Morn
  13. Such as in highest Heav'n, arrayd in Gold
  14. Empyreal, from before her vanisht Night,
  15. Shot through with orient Beams: when all the Plain
  16. Coverd with thick embatteld Squadrons bright,
  17. Chariots and flaming Armes, and fierie Steeds
  18. Reflecting blaze on blaze, first met his view:
  19. Warr he perceav'd, warr in procinct, and found
  20. Already known what he for news had thought
  21. To have reported: gladly then he mixt
  22. Among those friendly Powers who him receav'd
  23. With joy and acclamations loud, that one
  24. That of so many Myriads fall'n, yet one
  25. Returnd not lost: On to the sacred hill
  26. They led him high applauded, and present
  27. Before the seat supream; from whence a voice
  28. From midst a Golden Cloud thus milde was heard.
  29. Servant of God, well done, well hast thou fought
  30. The better fight, who single hast maintaind
  31. Against revolted multitudes the Cause
  32. Of Truth, in word mightier then they in Armes;
  33. And for the testimonie of Truth hast born
  34. Universal reproach, far worse to beare
  35. Then violence: for this was all thy care
  36. To stand approv'd in sight of God, though Worlds
  37. Judg'd thee perverse: the easier conquest now
  38. Remains thee, aided by this host of friends,
  39. Back on thy foes more glorious to return
  40. Then scornd thou didst depart, and to subdue
  41. By force, who reason for thir Law refuse,
  42. Right reason for thir Law, and for thir King
  43. Messiah, who by right of merit Reigns.
  44. Go Michael of Celestial Armies Prince,
  45. And thou in Military prowess next
  46. Gabriel, lead forth to Battel these my Sons
  47. Invincible, lead forth my armed Saints
  48. By Thousands and by Millions rang'd for fight;
  49. Equal in number to that Godless crew
  50. Rebellious, them with Fire and hostile Arms
  51. Fearless assault, and to the brow of Heav'n
  52. Pursuing drive them out from God and bliss,
  53. Into thir place of punishment, the Gulf
  54. Of Tartarus, which ready opens wide
  55. His fiery Chaos to receave thir fall.
..............

IN PLAIN ENGLISH

. CHAPTER 6

  1. The brave angel traveled all night, till morning. Nobody chased after him.

  2. In Heaven, there's a cave near God's throne. Light and darkness take turns coming out of it and travel through Heaven, like day and night.
  3. Night there is like twilight on Earth.

  4. Abdiel saw the whole plain covered with squadrons of chariots, reflecting the morning light.
  5. He could see God's army was ready for war. Apparently they already knew what he was coming to report.
  6. He was happy to be home. They all greeted him and praised him for being the only one of all of Satan's followers who wouldn't rebel against God.
  7. They brought him before God's throne.

  8. God's gentle voice said, Well done, Abdiel. You held your own against the pack.
  9. The truth made you stronger than them, with all their weapons.
  10. In return you were mocked, and had to face all their contempt. That can be tougher to take than violence. But you only cared about getting my approval.
  11. Your next victory will be much easier. You'll go back and fight them, backed up by my whole army. You left there being ridiculed, but you'll return in glory.
  12. We'll have to use force against those who reject their rightful King Messiah and his laws.

  13. Michael, you are my highest military leader.
  14. And Gabriel, next in rank, both of you go lead my army in battle against the rebels. Take as many thousands as you need to equal theirs.
  15. Use whatever weapons you need.
  16. Drive them right out of Heaven into their place of punishment. Hell is wide open and ready for them to fall into it.
  1. So spake the Sovran voice, and Clouds began
  2. To darken all the Hill, and smoak to rowl
  3. In duskie wreathes, reluctant flames, the signe
  4. Of wrauth awak't: nor with less dread the loud
  5. Ethereal Trumpet from on high gan blow:
  6. At which command the Powers Militant,
  7. That stood for Heav'n, in mighty Quadrate joyn'd
  8. Of Union irresistible, mov'd on
  9. In silence thir bright Legions, to the sound
  10. Of instrumental Harmonie that breath'd
  11. Heroic Ardor to advent'rous deeds
  12. Under thir God-like Leaders, in the Cause
  13. Of God and his Messiah. On they move
  14. Indissolubly firm; nor obvious Hill
  15. Nor streit'ning Vale, nor Wood, nor Stream divides
  16. Thir perfet ranks; for high above the ground
  17. Thir march was, and the passive Air upbore
  18. Thir nimble tread, as when the total kind
  19. Of Birds in orderly array on wing
  20. Came summond over Eden to receive
  21. Thir names of thee; so over many a tract
  22. Of Heav'n they march'd, and many a Province wide
  23. Tenfold the length of this terrene: at last
  24. Farr in th' Horizon to the North appeer'd
  25. From skirt to skirt a fierie Region, stretcht
  26. In battailous aspect, and neerer view
  27. Bristl'd with upright beams innumerable
  28. Of rigid Spears, and Helmets throng'd, and Shields
  29. Various, with boastful Argument portraid,
  30. The banded Powers of Satan hasting on
  31. With furious expedition; for they weend
  32. That self same day by fight, or by surprize
  33. To win the Mount of God, and on his Throne
  34. To set the envier of his State, the proud
  35. Aspirer, but thir thoughts prov'd fond and vain
  36. In the mid way: though strange to us it seemd
  37. At first, that Angel should with Angel warr,
  38. And in fierce hosting meet, who wont to meet
  39. So oft in Festivals of joy and love
  40. Unanimous, as sons of one great Sire
  41. Hymning th' Eternal Father: but the shout
  42. Of Battel now began, and rushing sound
  43. Of onset ended soon each milder thought.
  1. Heaven got dark and fiery. It was a sign of God's anger.

  2. Equally scary was the trumpet that blew.

  3. All of God's powerful army came out when they heard it. It motivated them to go fight.



  4. On they went. Hills and woods were no obstacle. They just flew over them.


  5. It was like when all the different kinds of birds came to get their names from you, Adam, all perfectly lined up.

  6. They traveled a very long distance.

  7. Finally they could begin to see shields and spears, spread all across the horizon. It was Satan's army, speedily advancing.


  8. Satan's forces had planned to take God by surprise and take over his throne, but they could see that wasn't going to work.


  9. We may find it hard to imagine gentle creatures like angels fighting a war, but that's exactly what happened next.
  1. High in the midst exalted as a God
  2. Th' Apostate in his Sun-bright Chariot sate
  3. Idol of Majesty Divine, enclos'd
  4. With Flaming Cherubim, and golden Shields;
  5. Then lighted from his gorgeous Throne, for now
  6. 'Twixt Host and Host but narrow space was left,
  7. A dreadful intervall, and Front to Front
  8. Presented stood in terrible array
  9. Of hideous length: before the cloudie Van,
  10. On the rough edge of battel ere it joyn'd,
  11. Satan with vast and haughtie strides advanc't,
  12. Came towring, armd in Adamant and Gold;
  13. Abdiel that sight endur'd not, where he stood
  14. Among the mightiest, bent on highest deeds,
  15. And thus his own undaunted heart explores.
  16. O Heav'n! that such resemblance of the Highest
  17. Should yet remain, where faith and realtie
  18. Remain not; wherefore should not strength and might
  19. There fail where Vertue fails, or weakest prove
  20. Where boldest; though to sight unconquerable?
  21. His puissance, trusting in th' Almightie's aide,
  22. I mean to try, whose Reason I have tri'd
  23. Unsound and false; nor is it aught but just,
  24. That he who in debate of Truth hath won,
  25. Should win in Arms, in both disputes alike
  26. Victor; though brutish that contest and foule,
  27. When Reason hath to deal with force, yet so
  28. Most reason is that Reason overcome.
  29. So pondering, and from his armed Peers
  30. Forth stepping opposite, half way he met
  31. His daring foe, at this prevention more
  32. Incens't, and thus securely him defi'd.
  33. Proud, art thou met? thy hope was to have reacht
  34. The highth of thy aspiring unoppos'd,
  35. The Throne of God unguarded, and his side
  36. Abandond at the terror of thy Power
  37. Or potent tongue; fool, not to think how vain
  38. Against th' Omnipotent to rise in Arms;
  39. Who out of smallest things could without end
  40. Have rais'd incessant Armies to defeat
  41. Thy folly; or with solitarie hand
  42. Reaching beyond all limit at one blow
  43. Unaided could have finisht thee, and whelmd
  44. Thy Legions under darkness; but thou seest
  45. All are not of thy Train; there be who Faith
  46. Prefer, and Pietie to God, though then
  47. To thee not visible, when I alone
  48. Seemd in thy World erroneous to dissent
  49. From all: my Sect thou seest, now learn too late
  50. How few somtimes may know, when thousands err.
  51. Whom the grand foe with scornful eye askance
  52. Thus answerd. Ill for thee, but in wisht houre
  53. Of my revenge, first sought for thou returnst
  54. From flight, seditious Angel, to receave
  55. Thy merited reward, the first assay
  56. Of this right hand provok't, since first that tongue
  57. Inspir'd with contradiction durst oppose
  58. A third part of the Gods, in Synod met
  59. Thir Deities to assert, who while they feel
  60. Vigour Divine within them, can allow
  61. Omnipotence to none. But well thou comst
  62. Before thy fellows, ambitious to win
  63. From me som Plume, that thy success may show
  64. Destruction to the rest: this pause between
  65. (Unanswerd least thou boast) to let thee know;
  66. At first I thought that Libertie and Heav'n
  67. To heav'nly Soules had bin all one; but now
  68. I see that most through sloth had rather serve,
  69. Ministring Spirits, traind up in Feast and Song;
  70. Such hast thou arm'd, the Minstrelsie of Heav'n,
  71. Servilitie with freedom to contend,
  72. As both thir deeds compar'd this day shall prove.
  73. To whom in brief thus Abdiel stern repli'd.
  74. Apostat, still thou errst, nor end wilt find
  75. Of erring, from the path of truth remote:
  76. Unjustly thou deprav'st it with the name
  77. Of Servitude to serve whom God ordains,
  78. Or Nature; God and Nature bid the same,
  79. When he who rules is worthiest, and excells
  80. Them whom he governs. This is servitude,
  81. To serve th' unwise, or him who hath rebelld
  82. Against his worthier, as thine now serve thee,
  83. Thy self not free, but to thy self enthrall'd;
  84. Yet leudly dar'st our ministring upbraid.
  85. Reign thou in Hell thy Kingdom, let mee serve
  86. In Heav'n God ever blest, and his Divine
  87. Behests obey, worthiest to be obey'd,
  88. Yet Chains in Hell, not Realms expect: mean while
  89. From mee returnd, as erst thou saidst, from flight,
  90. This greeting on thy impious Crest receive.
  91. So saying, a noble stroke he lifted high,
  92. Which hung not, but so swift with tempest fell
  93. On the proud Crest of Satan, that no sight,
  94. Nor motion of swift thought, less could his Shield
  95. Such ruin intercept: ten paces huge
  96. He back recoild; the tenth on bended knee
  97. His massie Spear upstaid; as if on Earth
  98. Winds under ground or waters forcing way
  99. Sidelong, had push't a Mountain from his seat
  100. Half sunk with all his Pines. Amazement seis'd
  101. The Rebel Thrones, but greater rage to see
  102. Thus foil'd thir mightiest, ours joy filld, and shout,
  103. Presage of Victorie and fierce desire
  104. Of Battel: whereat Michael bid sound
  105. Th' Arch-Angel trumpet; through the vast of Heaven
  106. It sounded, and the faithful Armies rung
  107. Hosanna to the Highest: nor stood at gaze
  108. The adverse Legions, nor less hideous joyn'd
  109. The horrid shock: now storming furie rose,
  110. And clamour such as heard in Heav'n till now
  111. Was never, Arms on Armour clashing bray'd
  112. Horrible discord, and the madding Wheeles
  113. Of brazen Chariots rag'd; dire was the noise
  114. Of conflict; over head the dismal hiss
  115. Of fiery Darts in flaming volies flew,
  116. And flying vaulted either Host with fire.
  117. So under fierie Cope together rush'd
  118. Both Battels maine, with ruinous assault
  119. And inextinguishable rage; all Heav'n
  120. Resounded, and had Earth bin then, all Earth
  121. Had to her Center shook. What wonder? when
  122. Millions of fierce encountring Angels fought
  123. On either side, the least of whom could weild
  124. These Elements, and arm him with the force
  125. Of all thir Regions: how much more of Power
  126. Armie against Armie numberless to raise
  127. Dreadful combustion warring, and disturb,
  128. Though not destroy, thir happie Native seat;
  129. Had not th' Eternal King Omnipotent
  130. From his strong hold of Heav'n high over-rul'd
  131. And limited thir might; though numberd such
  132. As each divided Legion might have seemd
  133. A numerous Host, in strength each armed hand
  134. A Legion; led in fight, yet Leader seemd
  135. Each Warriour single as in Chief, expert
  136. When to advance, or stand, or turn the sway
  137. Of Battel, open when, and when to close
  138. The ridges of grim Warr; no thought of flight,
  139. None of retreat, no unbecoming deed
  140. That argu'd fear; each on himself reli'd,
  141. As onely in his arm the moment lay
  142. Of victorie; deeds of eternal fame
  143. Were don, but infinite: for wide was spred
  144. That Warr and various; somtimes on firm ground
  145. A standing fight, then soaring on main wing
  146. Tormented all the Air; all Air seemd then
  147. Conflicting Fire: long time in eeven scale
  148. The Battel hung; till Satan, who that day
  149. Prodigious power had shewn, and met in Armes
  150. No equal, raunging through the dire attack
  151. Of fighting Seraphim confus'd, at length
  152. Saw where the Sword of Michael smote, and fell'd
  153. Squadrons at once, with huge two-handed sway
  154. Brandisht aloft the horrid edge came down
  155. Wide wasting; such destruction to withstand
  156. He hasted, and oppos'd the rockie Orb
  157. Of tenfold Adamant, his ample Shield
  158. A vast circumference: At his approach
  159. The great Arch-Angel from his warlike toile
  160. Surceas'd, and glad as hoping here to end
  161. Intestine War in Heav'n, the arch foe subdu'd
  162. Or Captive drag'd in Chains, with hostile frown
  163. And visage all enflam'd first thus began.
  164. Author of evil, unknown till thy revolt,
  165. Unnam'd in Heav'n, now plenteous, as thou seest
  166. These Acts of hateful strife, hateful to all,
  167. Though heaviest by just measure on thy self
  168. And thy adherents: how hast thou disturb'd
  169. Heav'ns blessed peace, and into Nature brought
  170. Miserie, uncreated till the crime
  171. Of thy Rebellion? how hast thou instill'd
  172. Thy malice into thousands, once upright
  173. And faithful, now prov'd false. But think not here
  174. To trouble Holy Rest; Heav'n casts thee out
  175. From all her Confines. Heav'n the seat of bliss
  176. Brooks not the works of violence and Warr.
  177. Hence then, and evil go with thee along
  178. Thy ofspring, to the place of evil, Hell,
  179. Thou and thy wicked crew; there mingle broiles,
  180. Ere this avenging Sword begin thy doome,
  181. Or som more sudden vengeance wing'd from God
  182. Precipitate thee with augmented paine.
  183. So spake the Prince of Angels; to whom thus
  184. The Adversarie. Nor think thou with wind
  185. Of airie threats to aw whom yet with deeds
  186. Thou canst not. Hast thou turnd the least of these
  187. To flight, or if to fall, but that they rise
  188. Unvanquisht, easier to transact with mee
  189. That thou shouldst hope, imperious, and with threats
  190. To chase me hence? erre not that so shall end
  191. The strife which thou call'st evil, but wee style
  192. The strife of Glorie: which we mean to win,
  193. Or turn this Heav'n it self into the Hell
  194. Thou fablest, here however to dwell free,
  195. If not to reign: mean while thy utmost force,
  196. And join him nam'd Almighty to thy aid,
  197. I flie not, but have sought thee farr and nigh.
  198. They ended parle, and both addresst for fight
  199. Unspeakable; for who, though with the tongue
  200. Of Angels, can relate, or to what things
  201. Liken on Earth conspicuous, that may lift
  202. Human imagination to such highth
  203. Of Godlike Power: for likest Gods they seemd,
  204. Stood they or mov'd, in stature, motion, arms
  205. Fit to decide the Empire of great Heav'n.
  206. Now wav'd thir fierie Swords, and in the Aire
  207. Made horrid Circles; two broad Suns thir Shields
  208. Blaz'd opposite, while expectation stood
  209. In horror; from each hand with speed retir'd
  210. Where erst was thickest fight, th' Angelic throng,
  211. And left large field, unsafe within the wind
  212. Of such commotion, such as to set forth
  213. Great things by small, If Natures concord broke,
  214. Among the Constellations warr were sprung,
  215. Two Planets rushing from aspect maligne
  216. Of fiercest opposition in mid Skie,
  217. Should combat, and thir jarring Sphears confound.
  218. Together both with next to Almightie Arme,
  219. Uplifted imminent one stroke they aim'd
  220. That might determine, and not need repeate,
  221. As not of power, at once; nor odds appeerd
  222. In might or swift prevention; but the sword
  223. Of Michael from the Armorie of God
  224. Was giv'n him temperd so, that neither keen
  225. Nor solid might resist that edge: it met
  226. The sword of Satan with steep force to smite
  227. Descending, and in half cut sheere, nor staid,
  228. But with swift wheele reverse, deep entring shar'd
  229. All his right side; then Satan first knew pain,
  230. And writh' d him to and fro convolv'd; so sore
  231. The griding sword with discontinuous wound
  232. Passd through him, but th' Ethereal substance clos'd
  233. Not long divisible, and from the gash
  234. A stream of Nectarous humor issuing flow'd
  235. Sanguin, such as Celestial Spirits may bleed,
  236. And all his Armour staind ere while so bright.
  237. Forthwith on all sides to his aide was run
  238. By Angels many and strong, who interpos'd
  239. Defence, while others bore him on thir Shields
  240. Back to his Chariot; where it stood retir'd
  241. From off the files of warr; there they him laid
  242. Gnashing for anguish and despite and shame
  243. To find himself not matchless, and his pride
  244. Humbl'd by such rebuke, so farr beneath
  245. His confidence to equal God in power.
  246. Yet soon he heal'd; for Spirits that live throughout
  247. Vital in every part, not as frail man
  248. In Entrailes, Heart or Head, Liver or Reines;
  249. Cannot but by annihilating die;
  250. Nor in thir liquid texture mortal wound
  251. Receive, no more then can the fluid Aire:
  252. All Heart they live, all Head, all Eye, all Eare,
  253. All Intellect, all Sense, and as they please,
  254. They Limb themselves, and colour, shape or size
  255. Assume, as likes them best, condense or rare.
  256. Mean while in other parts like deeds deservd
  257. Memorial, where the might of Gabriel fought,
  258. And with fierce Ensignes pierc'd the deep array
  259. Of Moloc furious King, who him defi'd
  260. And at his Chariot wheeles to drag him bound
  261. Threatn'd, nor from the Holie One of Heav'n
  262. Refrein'd his tongue blasphemous; but anon
  263. Down clov'n to the waste, with shatterd Armes
  264. And uncouth paine fled bellowing. On each wing
  265. Uriel and Raphael his vaunting foe,
  266. Though huge, and in a Rock of Diamond Armd,
  267. Vanquish'd Adramelec, and Asmadai,
  268. Two potent Thrones, that to be less then Gods
  269. Disdain'd, but meaner thoughts learnd in thir flight,
  270. Mangl'd with gastly wounds through Plate and Maile,
  271. Nor stood unmindful Abdiel to annoy
  272. The Atheist crew, but with redoubl'd blow
  273. Ariel and Arioc, and the violence
  274. Of Ramiel scorcht and blasted overthrew.
  275. I might relate of thousands, and thir names
  276. Eternize here on Earth; but those elect
  277. Angels contented with thir fame in Heav'n
  278. Seek not the praise of men: the other sort
  279. In might though wondrous and in Acts of Warr,
  280. Nor of Renown less eager, yet by doome
  281. Canceld from Heav'n and sacred memorie,
  282. Nameless in dark oblivion let them dwell.
  283. For strength from Truth divided and from Just,
  284. Illaudable, naught merits but dispraise
  285. And ignominie, yet to glorie aspires
  286. Vain glorious, and through infamie seeks fame:
  287. Therfore Eternal silence be thir doome.
  288. And now thir Mightiest quelld, the battel swerv'd,
  289. With many an inrode gor'd; deformed rout
  290. Enter'd, and foul disorder; all the ground
  291. With shiverd armour strow'n, and on a heap
  292. Chariot and Charioter lay overturnd
  293. And fierie foaming Steeds; what stood, recoyld
  294. Orewearied, through the faint Satanic Host
  295. Defensive scarse, or with pale fear surpris'd,
  296. Then first with fear surpris'd and sense of paine
  297. Fled ignominious, to such evil brought
  298. By sin of disobedience, till that hour
  299. Not liable to fear or flight or paine.
  300. Far otherwise th' inviolable Saints
  301. In Cubic Phalanx firm advanc't entire,
  302. Invulnerable, impenitrably arm'd:
  303. Such high advantages thir innocence
  304. Gave them above thir foes, not to have sinnd,
  305. Not to have disobei'd; in fight they stood
  306. Unwearied, unobnoxious to be pain'd
  307. By wound, though from thir place by violence mov'd.
  308. Now Night her course began, and over Heav'n
  309. Inducing darkness, grateful truce impos'd,
  310. And silence on the odious dinn of Warr:
  311. Under her Cloudie covert both retir'd,
  312. Victor and Vanquisht: on the foughten field
  313. Michael and his Angels prevalent
  314. Encamping, plac'd in Guard thir Watches round,
  315. Cherubic waving fires: on th' other part
  316. Satan with his rebellious disappeerd,
  317. Far in the dark dislodg'd, and void of rest,
  318. His Potentates to Councel call'd by night;
  319. And in the midst thus undismai'd began.
  320. O now in danger tri'd, now known in Armes
  321. Not to be overpowerd, Companions deare,
  322. Found worthy not of Libertie alone,
  323. Too mean pretense, but what we more affect,
  324. Honour, Dominion, Glorie, and renowne,
  325. Who have sustaind one day in doubtful fight
  326. (And if one day, why not Eternal dayes?)
  327. What Heavens Lord had powerfullest to send
  328. Against us from about his Throne, and judg'd
  329. Sufficient to subdue us to his will,
  330. But proves not so: then fallible, it seems,
  331. Of future we may deem him, though till now
  332. Omniscient thought. True is, less firmly arm'd,
  333. Some disadvantage we endur'd and paine,
  334. Till now not known, but known as soon contemnd,
  335. Since now we find this our Empyreal form
  336. Incapable of mortal injurie
  337. Imperishable, and though pierc'd with wound,
  338. Soon closing, and by native vigour heal'd.
  339. Of evil then so small as easie think
  340. The remedie; perhaps more valid Armes,
  341. Weapons more violent, when next we meet,
  342. May serve to better us, and worse our foes,
  343. Or equal what between us made the odds,
  344. In Nature none: if other hidden cause
  345. Left them Superiour, while we can preserve
  346. Unhurt our mindes, and understanding sound,
  347. Due search and consultation will disclose.
  348. He sat; and in th' assembly next upstood
  349. Nisroc, of Principalities the prime;
  350. As one he stood escap't from cruel fight,
  351. Sore toild, his riv'n Armes to havoc hewn,
  352. And cloudie in aspect thus answering spake.
  353. Deliverer from new Lords, leader to free
  354. Enjoyment of our right as Gods; yet hard
  355. For Gods, and too unequal work we find
  356. Against unequal arms to fight in paine,
  357. Against unpaind, impassive; from which evil
  358. Ruin must needs ensue; for what availes
  359. Valour or strength, though matchless, quelld with pain
  360. Which all subdues, and makes remiss the hands
  361. Of Mightiest. Sense of pleasure we may well
  362. Spare out of life perhaps, and not repine,
  363. But live content, which is the calmest life:
  364. But pain is perfet miserie, the worst
  365. Of evils, and excessive, overturnes
  366. All patience. He who therefore can invent
  367. With what more forcible we may offend
  368. Our yet unwounded Enemies, or arme
  369. Our selves with like defence, to me deserves
  370. No less then for deliverance what we owe.
  371. Whereto with look compos'd Satan repli'd.
  372. Not uninvented that, which thou aright
  373. Believst so main to our success, I bring;
  374. Which of us who beholds the bright surface
  375. Of this Ethereous mould whereon we stand,
  376. This continent of spacious Heav'n, adornd
  377. With Plant, Fruit, Flour Ambrosial, Gemms & Gold,
  378. Whose Eye so superficially surveyes
  379. These things, as not to mind from whence they grow
  380. Deep under ground, materials dark and crude,
  381. Of spiritous and fierie spume, till toucht
  382. With Heav'ns ray, and temperd they shoot forth
  383. So beauteous, op'ning to the ambient light.
  384. These in thir dark Nativitie the Deep
  385. Shall yield us pregnant with infernal flame,
  386. Which into hallow Engins long and round
  387. Thick-rammd, at th' other bore with touch of fire
  388. Dilated and infuriate shall send forth
  389. From far with thundring noise among our foes
  390. Such implements of mischief as shall dash
  391. To pieces, and orewhelm whatever stands
  392. Adverse, that they shall fear we have disarmd
  393. The Thunderer of his only dreaded bolt.
  394. Nor long shall be our labour, yet ere dawne,
  395. Effect shall end our wish. Mean while revive;
  396. Abandon fear; to strength and counsel joind
  397. Think nothing hard, much less to be despaird.
  398. He ended, and his words thir drooping chere
  399. Enlightn'd, and thir languisht hope reviv'd.
  400. Th' invention all admir'd, and each, how hee
  401. To be th' inventor miss'd, so easie it seemd
  402. Once found, which yet unfound most would have thought
  403. Impossible: yet haply of thy Race
  404. In future dayes, if Malice should abound,
  405. Some one intent on mischief, or inspir'd
  406. With dev'lish machination might devise
  407. Like instrument to plague the Sons of men
  408. For sin, on warr and mutual slaughter bent.
  409. Forthwith from Councel to the work they flew,
  410. None arguing stood, innumerable hands
  411. Were ready, in a moment up they turnd
  412. Wide the Celestial soile, and saw beneath
  413. Th' originals of Nature in thir crude
  414. Conception; Sulphurous and Nitrous Foame
  415. They found, they mingl'd, and with suttle Art,
  416. Concocted and adusted they reduc'd
  417. To blackest grain, and into store convey'd:
  418. Part hidd'n veins diggd up (nor hath this Earth
  419. Entrails unlike) of Mineral and Stone,
  420. Whereof to found thir Engins and thir Balls
  421. Of missive ruin; part incentive reed
  422. Provide, pernicious with one touch to fire.
  423. So all ere day-spring, under conscious Night
  424. Secret they finish'd, and in order set,
  425. With silent circumspection unespi'd.
  426. Now when fair Morn Orient in Heav'n appeerd
  427. Up rose the Victor Angels, and to Arms
  428. The matin Trumpet Sung: in Arms they stood
  429. Of Golden Panoplie, refulgent Host,
  430. Soon banded; others from the dawning Hills
  431. Lookd round, and Scouts each Coast light-armed scoure,
  432. Each quarter, to descrie the distant foe,
  433. Where lodg'd, or whither fled, or if for fight,
  434. In motion or in alt: him soon they met
  435. Under spred Ensignes moving nigh, in slow
  436. But firm Battalion; back with speediest Sail
  437. Zophiel, of Cherubim the swiftest wing,
  438. Came flying, and in mid Aire aloud thus cri'd.
  439. Arme, Warriours, Arme for fight, the foe at hand,
  440. Whom fled we thought, will save us long pursuit
  441. This day, fear not his flight; so thick a Cloud
  442. He comes, and settl'd in his face I see
  443. Sad resolution and secure: let each
  444. His Adamantine coat gird well, and each
  445. Fit well his Helme, gripe fast his orbed Shield,
  446. Born eevn or high, for this day will pour down,
  447. If I conjecture aught, no drizling showr,
  448. But ratling storm of Arrows barbd with fire.
  449. So warnd he them aware themselves, and soon
  450. In order, quit of all impediment;
  451. Instant without disturb they took Allarm,
  452. And onward move Embattelld; when behold
  453. Not distant far with heavie pace the Foe
  454. Approaching gross and huge; in hollow Cube
  455. Training his devilish Enginrie, impal'd
  456. On every side with shaddowing Squadrons Deep,
  457. To hide the fraud. At interview both stood
  458. A while, but suddenly at head appeerd
  459. Satan: And thus was heard Commanding loud.
  460. Vanguard, to Right and Left the Front unfould;
  461. That all may see who hate us, how we seek
  462. Peace and composure, and with open brest
  463. Stand readie to receive them, if they like
  464. Our overture, and turn not back perverse;
  465. But that I doubt, however witness Heaven,
  466. Heav'n witness thou anon, while we discharge
  467. Freely our part; yee who appointed stand
  468. Do as you have in charge, and briefly touch
  469. What we propound, and loud that all may hear.
  470. So scoffing in ambiguous words he scarce
  471. Had ended; when to Right and Left the Front
  472. Divided, and to either Flank retir'd.
  473. Which to our eyes discoverd new and strange,
  474. A triple mounted row of Pillars laid
  475. On Wheels (for like to Pillars most they seem'd
  476. Or hollow'd bodies made of Oak or Firr
  477. With branches lopt, in Wood or Mountain fell'd)
  478. Brass, Iron, Stonie mould, had not thir mouthes
  479. With hideous orifice gap't on us wide,
  480. Portending hollow truce; at each behind
  481. A Seraph stood, and in his hand a Reed
  482. Stood waving tipt with fire; while we suspense,
  483. Collected stood within our thoughts amus'd,
  484. Not long, for sudden all at once thir Reeds
  485. Put forth, and to a narrow vent appli'd
  486. With nicest touch. Immediate in a flame,
  487. But soon obscur'd with smoak, all Heav'n appeerd,
  488. From those deep throated Engins belcht, whose roar
  489. Emboweld with outragious noise the Air,
  490. And all her entrails tore, disgorging foule
  491. Thir devilish glut, chaind Thunderbolts and Hail
  492. Of Iron Globes, which on the Victor Host
  493. Level'd, with such impetuous furie smote,
  494. That whom they hit, none on thir feet might stand,
  495. Though standing else as Rocks, but down they fell
  496. By thousands, Angel on Arch-Angel rowl'd;
  497. The sooner for thir Arms, unarm'd they might
  498. Have easily as Spirits evaded swift
  499. By quick contraction or remove; but now
  500. Foule dissipation follow'd and forc't rout;
  501. Nor serv'd it to relax thir serried files.
  502. What should they do? if on they rusht, repulse
  503. Repeated, and indecent overthrow
  504. Doubl'd, would render them yet more despis'd,
  505. And to thir foes a laughter; for in view
  506. Stood rankt of Seraphim another row
  507. In posture to displode thir second tire
  508. Of Thunder: back defeated to return
  509. They worse abhorr'd. Satan beheld thir plight,
  510. And to his Mates thus in derision call'd.
  511. O Friends, why come not on these Victors proud?
  512. Ere while they fierce were coming, and when wee,
  513. To entertain them fair with open Front
  514. And Brest, (what could we more?) propounded terms
  515. Of composition, strait they chang'd thir minds,
  516. Flew off, and into strange vagaries fell,
  517. As they would dance, yet for a dance they seemd
  518. Somwhat extravagant and wilde, perhaps
  519. For joy of offerd peace: but I suppose
  520. If our proposals once again were heard
  521. We should compel them to a quick result.
  522. To whom thus Belial in like gamesom mood,
  523. Leader, the terms we sent were terms of weight,
  524. Of hard contents, and full of force urg'd home,
  525. Such as we might perceive amus'd them all,
  526. And stumbl'd many, who receives them right,
  527. Had need from head to foot well understand;
  528. Not understood, this gift they have besides,
  529. They shew us when our foes walk not upright.
  530. So they among themselves in pleasant veine
  531. Stood scoffing, highthn'd in thir thoughts beyond
  532. All doubt of victorie, eternal might
  533. To match with thir inventions they presum'd
  534. So easie, and of his Thunder made a scorn,
  535. And all his Host derided, while they stood
  536. A while in trouble; but they stood not long,
  537. Rage prompted them at length, and found them arms
  538. Against such hellish mischief fit to oppose.
  539. Forthwith (behold the excellence, the power
  540. Which God hath in his mighty Angels plac'd)
  541. Thir Arms away they threw, and to the Hills
  542. (For Earth hath this variety from Heav'n
  543. Of pleasure situate in Hill and Dale)
  544. Light as the Lightning glimps they ran, they flew,
  545. From thir foundations loosning to and fro
  546. They pluckt the seated Hills with all thir load,
  547. Rocks, Waters, Woods, and by the shaggie tops
  548. Up lifting bore them in thir hands: Amaze,
  549. Be sure, and terrour seis'd the rebel Host,
  550. When coming towards them so dread they saw
  551. The bottom of the Mountains upward turn'd,
  552. Till on those cursed Engins triple-row
  553. They saw them whelm'd, and all thir confidence
  554. Under the weight of Mountains buried deep,
  555. Themselves invaded next, and on thir heads
  556. Main Promontories flung, which in the Air
  557. Came shadowing, and opprest whole Legions arm'd,
  558. Thir armor help'd thir harm, crush't in and bruis'd
  559. Into thir substance pent, which wrought them pain
  560. Implacable, and many a dolorous groan,
  561. Long strugling underneath, ere they could wind
  562. Out of such prison, though Spirits of purest light,
  563. Purest at first, now gross by sinning grown.
  564. The rest in imitation to like Armes
  565. Betook them, and the neighbouring Hills uptore;
  566. So Hills amid the Air encounterd Hills
  567. Hurl'd to and fro with jaculation dire,
  568. That under ground, they fought in dismal shade;
  569. Infernal noise; Warr seem'd a civil Game
  570. To this uproar; horrid confusion heapt
  571. Upon confusion rose: and now all Heav'n
  572. Had gone to wrack, with ruin overspred,
  573. Had not th' Almightie Father where he sits
  574. Shrin'd in his Sanctuarie of Heav'n secure,
  575. Consulting on the sum of things, foreseen
  576. This tumult, and permitted all, advis'd:
  577. That his great purpose he might so fulfill,
  578. To honour his Anointed Son aveng'd
  579. Upon his enemies, and to declare
  580. All power on him transferr'd: whence to his Son
  581. Th' Assessor of his Throne he thus began.
  582. Effulgence of my Glorie, Son belov'd,
  583. Son in whose face invisible is beheld
  584. Visibly, what by Deitie I am,
  585. And in whose hand what by Decree I doe,
  586. Second Omnipotence, two dayes are past,
  587. Two dayes, as we compute the dayes of Heav'n,
  588. Since Michael and his Powers went forth to tame
  589. These disobedient; sore hath been thir fight,
  590. As likeliest was, when two such Foes met arm'd;
  591. For to themselves I left them, and thou knowst,
  592. Equal in thir Creation they were form'd,
  593. Save what sin hath impaird, which yet hath wrought
  594. Insensibly, for I suspend thir doom;
  595. Whence in perpetual fight they needs must last
  596. Endless, and no solution will be found:
  597. Warr wearied hath perform'd what Warr can do,
  598. And to disorder'd rage let loose the reines,
  599. With Mountains as with Weapons arm'd, which makes
  600. Wild work in Heav'n, and dangerous to the maine.
  601. Two dayes are therefore past, the third is thine;
  602. For thee I have ordain'd it, and thus farr
  603. Have sufferd, that the Glorie may be thine
  604. Of ending this great Warr, since none but Thou
  605. Can end it. Into thee such Vertue and Grace
  606. Immense I have transfus'd, that all may know
  607. In Heav'n and Hell thy Power above compare,
  608. And this perverse Commotion governd thus,
  609. To manifest thee worthiest to be Heir
  610. Of all things, to be Heir and to be King
  611. By Sacred Unction, thy deserved right.
  612. Go then thou Mightiest in thy Fathers might,
  613. Ascend my Chariot, guide the rapid Wheeles
  614. That shake Heav'ns basis, bring forth all my Warr,
  615. My Bow and Thunder, my Almightie Arms
  616. Gird on, and Sword upon thy puissant Thigh;
  617. Pursue these sons of Darkness, drive them out
  618. From all Heav'ns bounds into the utter Deep:
  619. There let them learn, as likes them, to despise
  620. God and Messiah his anointed King.
  621. He said, and on his Son with Rayes direct
  622. Shon full, he all his Father full exprest
  623. Ineffably into his face receiv'd,
  624. And thus the filial Godhead answering spake.
  625. O Father, O Supream of heav'nly Thrones,
  626. First, Highest, Holiest, Best, thou alwayes seekst
  627. To glorifie thy Son, I alwayes thee,
  628. As is most just; this I my Glorie account,
  629. My exaltation, and my whole delight,
  630. That thou in me well pleas'd, declarst thy will
  631. Fulfill'd, which to fulfil is all my bliss.
  632. Scepter and Power, thy giving, I assume,
  633. And gladlier shall resign, when in the end
  634. Thou shalt be All in All, and I in thee
  635. For ever, and in mee all whom thou lov'st:
  636. But whom thou hat'st, I hate, and can put on
  637. Thy terrors, as I put thy mildness on,
  638. Image of thee in all things; and shall soon,
  639. Armd with thy might, rid heav'n of these rebell'd,
  640. To thir prepar'd ill Mansion driven down
  641. To chains of darkness, and th' undying Worm,
  642. That from thy just obedience could revolt,
  643. Whom to obey is happiness entire.
  644. Then shall thy Saints unmixt, and from th' impure
  645. Farr separate, circling thy holy Mount
  646. Unfeigned Halleluiahs to thee sing,
  647. Hymns of high praise, and I among them chief.
  648. So said, he o're his Scepter bowing, rose
  649. From the right hand of Glorie where he sate,
  650. And the third sacred Morn began to shine
  651. Dawning through Heav'n: forth rush'd with whirl-wind sound
  652. The Chariot of Paternal Deitie,
  653. Flashing thick flames, Wheele within Wheele, undrawn,
  654. It self instinct with Spirit, but convoyd
  655. By four Cherubic shapes, four Faces each
  656. Had wondrous, as with Starrs thir bodies all
  657. And Wings were set with Eyes, with Eyes the wheels
  658. Of Beril, and careering Fires between;
  659. Over thir heads a chrystal Firmament,
  660. Whereon a Saphir Throne, inlaid with pure
  661. Amber, and colours of the showrie Arch.
  662. Hee in Celestial Panoplie all armd
  663. Of radiant Urim, work divinely wrought,
  664. Ascended, at his right hand Victorie
  665. Sate Eagle-wing'd, beside him hung his Bow
  666. And Quiver with three-bolted Thunder stor'd,
  667. And from about him fierce Effusion rowld
  668. Of smoak and bickering flame, and sparkles dire;
  669. Attended with ten thousand thousand Saints,
  670. He onward came, farr off his coming shon,
  671. And twentie thousand (I thir number heard)
  672. Chariots of God, half on each hand were seen:
  673. Hee on the wings of Cherub rode sublime
  674. On the Chrystallin Skie, in Saphir Thron'd.
  675. Illustrious farr and wide, but by his own
  676. First seen, them unexpected joy surpriz'd,
  677. When the great Ensign of Messiah blaz'd
  678. Aloft by Angels born, his Sign in Heav'n:
  679. Under whose Conduct Michael soon reduc'd
  680. His Armie, circumfus'd on either Wing,
  681. Under thir Head imbodied all in one.
  682. Before him Power Divine his way prepar'd;
  683. At his command the uprooted Hills retir'd
  684. Each to his place, they heard his voice and went
  685. Obsequious, Heav'n his wonted face renewd,
  686. And with fresh Flourets Hill and Valley smil'd.
  687. This saw his hapless Foes but stood obdur'd,
  688. And to rebellious fight rallied thir Powers
  689. Insensate, hope conceiving from despair.
  690. In heav'nly Spirits could such perverseness dwell?
  691. But to convince the proud what Signs availe,
  692. Or Wonders move th' obdurate to relent?
  693. They hard'nd more by what might most reclame,
  694. Grieving to see his Glorie, at the sight
  695. Took envie, and aspiring to his highth,
  696. Stood reimbattell'd fierce, by force or fraud
  697. Weening to prosper, and at length prevaile
  698. Against God and Messiah, or to fall
  699. In universal ruin last, and now
  700. To final Battel drew, disdaining flight,
  701. Or faint retreat; when the great Son of God
  702. To all his Host on either hand thus spake.
  703. Stand still in bright array ye Saints, here stand
  704. Ye Angels arm'd, this day from Battel rest;
  705. Faithful hath been your warfare, and of God
  706. Accepted, fearless in his righteous Cause,
  707. And as ye have receivd, so have ye don
  708. Invincibly; but of this cursed crew
  709. The punishment to other hand belongs,
  710. Vengeance is his, or whose he sole appoints;
  711. Number to this dayes work is not ordain'd
  712. Nor multitude, stand onely and behold
  713. Gods indignation on these Godless pourd
  714. By mee, not you but mee they have despis'd,
  715. Yet envied; against mee is all thir rage,
  716. Because the Father, t' whom in Heav'n supream
  717. Kingdom and Power and Glorie appertains,
  718. Hath honourd me according to his will.
  719. Therefore to mee thir doom he hath assig'n'd;
  720. That they may have thir wish, to trie with mee
  721. In Battel which the stronger proves, they all,
  722. Or I alone against them, since by strength
  723. They measure all, of other excellence
  724. Not emulous, nor care who them excells;
  725. Nor other strife with them do I voutsafe.
  726. So spake the Son, and into terrour chang'd
  727. His count'nance too severe to be beheld
  728. And full of wrauth bent on his Enemies.
  729. At once the Four spred out thir Starrie wings
  730. With dreadful shade contiguous, and the Orbes
  731. Of his fierce Chariot rowld, as with the sound
  732. Of torrent Floods, or of a numerous Host.
  733. Hee on his impious Foes right onward drove,
  734. Gloomie as Night; under his burning Wheeles
  735. The stedfast Empyrean shook throughout,
  736. All but the Throne it self of God. Full soon
  737. Among them he arriv'd; in his right hand
  738. Grasping ten thousand Thunders, which he sent
  739. Before him, such as in thir Soules infix'd
  740. Plagues; they astonisht all resistance lost,
  741. All courage; down thir idle weapons drop'd;
  742. O're Shields and Helmes, and helmed heads he rode
  743. Of Thrones and mighty Seraphim prostrate,
  744. That wisht the Mountains now might be again
  745. Thrown on them as a shelter from his ire.
  746. Nor less on either side tempestuous fell
  747. His arrows, from the fourfold-visag'd Foure,
  748. Distinct with eyes, and from the living Wheels,
  749. Distinct alike with multitude of eyes,
  750. One Spirit in them rul'd, and every eye
  751. Glar'd lightning, and shot forth pernicious fire
  752. Among th' accurst, that witherd all thir strength,
  753. And of thir wonted vigour left them draind,
  754. Exhausted, spiritless, afflicted, fall'n.
  755. Yet half his strength he put not forth, but check'd
  756. His Thunder in mid Volie, for he meant
  757. Not to destroy, but root them out of Heav'n:
  758. The overthrown he rais'd, and as a Heard
  759. Of Goats or timerous flock together throngd
  760. Drove them before him Thunder-struck, pursu'd
  761. With terrors and with furies to the bounds
  762. And Chrystal wall of Heav'n, which op'ning wide,
  763. Rowld inward, and a spacious Gap disclos'd
  764. Into the wastful Deep; the monstrous sight
  765. Strook them with horror backward, but far worse
  766. Urg'd them behind; headlong themselves they threw
  767. Down from the verge of Heav'n, Eternal wrauth
  768. Burnt after them to the bottomless pit.
  769. Hell heard th' unsufferable noise, Hell saw
  770. Heav'n ruining from Heav'n and would have fled
  771. Affrighted; but strict Fate had cast too deep
  772. Her dark foundations, and too fast had bound.
  773. Nine dayes they fell; confounded Chaos roard,
  774. And felt tenfold confusion in thir fall
  775. Through his wilde Anarchie, so huge a rout
  776. Incumberd him with ruin: Hell at last
  777. Yawning receavd them whole, and on them clos'd,
  778. Hell thir fit habitation fraught with fire
  779. Unquenchable, the house of woe and paine.
  780. Disburdnd Heav'n rejoic'd, and soon repaird
  781. Her mural breach, returning whence it rowld.
  782. Sole Victor from th' expulsion of his Foes
  783. Messiah his triumphal Chariot turnd:
  784. To meet him all his Saints, who silent stood
  785. Eye witnesses of his Almightie Acts,
  786. With Jubilie advanc'd; and as they went,
  787. Shaded with branching Palme, each order bright,
  788. Sung Triumph, and him sung Victorious King,
  789. Son, Heir, and Lord, to him Dominion giv'n,
  790. Worthiest to Reign: he celebrated rode
  791. Triumphant through mid Heav'n, into the Courts
  792. And Temple of his mightie Father Thron'd
  793. On high: who into Glorie him receav'd,
  794. Where now he sits at the right hand of bliss.
  795. Thus measuring things in Heav'n by things on Earth
  796. At thy request, and that thou maist beware
  797. By what is past, to thee I have reveal'd
  798. What might have else to human Race bin hid;
  799. The discord which befel, and Warr in Heav'n
  800. Among th' Angelic Powers, and the deep fall
  801. Of those too high aspiring, who rebelld
  802. With Satan, hee who envies now thy state,
  803. Who now is plotting how he may seduce
  804. Thee also from obedience, that with him
  805. Bereavd of happiness thou maist partake
  806. His punishment, Eternal miserie;
  807. Which would be all his solace and revenge,
  808. As a despite don against the most High,
  809. Thee once to gaine Companion of his woe.
  810. But list'n not to his Temptations, warne
  811. Thy weaker; let it profit thee to have heard
  812. By terrible Example the reward
  813. Of disobedience; firm they might have stood,
  814. Yet fell; remember, and fear to transgress.


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