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النشر الإلكتروني

1045

Wafts on the calmer wave hy dubious light,
And, like a weather-beaten vessel, holds
Gladly the port, though shrouds and tackle torn;
Or in the emptier waste, resembling air,
Weighs his spread wings, at leisure to behold
Far off the empyreal heaven, extended wide
In circuit, undetermined square or round,
With opal towers and battlements adorned
Of living sapphire, once his native seat;
And, fast by, hanging in a golden chain,
This pendent world, in bigness as a star
Of smallest magnitude close by the moon.
Thither, full fraught with mischievous revenge,
Accursed, and in a cursed hour he hies.

1050

1055

etc. See III. 586. — 1037. Nature, creation, our world, cosmos as opposed to chaos! — 1042–43. Wafts himself ? Holds the port. Lat. tenet portum, as in Virgil, Æn. 1.400. — 1046–47. Weighs, poises ? See l. 905. Empyreal. I. 117. - 1048. Undetermined etc. “From the portion that was seen, the eye could not determine whether its margin was straight or curved." Keightley. Explanation sufficient ? — 1049. Opal towers and battlements. Prof. Himes suggests that the crystal wall’ of heaven is simply the horizon wall. The idea is strikingly beautiful. If it is correct, then perhaps, like the Latin arces, the 'opal towers and battlements’ may be mountain-peaks in that hori. zon, dipped in the colors of heaven. Angelic art and skill may have added to their beauty and grandeur. See I. 733, 749 ; IV. 512-8; V. 758–9. Coinciding with the horizon line may be precipices like the chalk cliffs of Albion, and at their base the ocean surges of Chaos may beat. See VII. 210 to 215; also the Preface. — 1051. Golden chain. See 1005. — 1052. This pendent world. Shakespeare's phrase in Measure for Measure, III. I. 126. World. Not our earth, as so many commentators have thought, but our universe of stars, all seeming like a single shining point ! — 1053. Smallest. Is it the true relative size, or only the apparent, the optical effect, that is here sought to be indicated ? Reason for your opinion ?

END OF BOOK II.

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