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النشر الإلكتروني

Blossoms and fruits at once of golden hue,
Appear'd, with gay enamel'd colours mix’d:
On which the sun more glad impress'd his beams,
Than in fair ev'ning cloud, or humid bow,
When God hath shower'd the earth; so lovely seem'd
That landscape, and of pure, now purer air
Meets his approach, and to the heart inspires
Vernal delight and joy, able to drive
All sadness but despair: now gentle gales
Fanning their odorif'rous wings, dispense
Native perfumes, and whisper whence they stole
Those balmy spoils. As when to them who sail
Beyond the Cape of Hope, and now are past
Muzambic, off at sea north-east winds blow
Sabean odours from the spicy shore
Of Araby the bless'd; with such delay
Well pleas'd they slack their course, and many a league
Cheer'd with the grateful smell old Ocean smiles:
So entertain'd those odrous sweets the fiend
Who came their bane; though with them better pleas'd
Than Asmodeous with the fishy fume
That drove him, though enamour'd, from the spouse
Of l'obit's son, and with a vengeance sent
From Media post to Egypt, there fast bound.

Now to th'ascent of that steep savage hill
Satan had journey'd on, pensive and slow;
But further way found none, so thick intwin'd,
As one continu'd brake, the undergrowth
Of shrubs and tangling bushes had perplex'd
All path of man or beast that pass'd that way.
One gate there only was, and that look'd east
On th’ other side: which when th’arch-felon saw,
Due entrance he disdain'd, and in contempt,
At one slight bound, high orerleap'd all bound
of hill or highest wall, and sheer within
Lights on his feet. As when a prowling wolf,
Whom hunger drives to seek new haunt for prey,
Watching where shepherds pen their Hocks at eve,
In hurdled cotes amid the field secure,

Leaps o'er the fence with ease into the fold:
Or as a thief, bent to unloard the cash
Of some rich burgher, whose substantial doors,
Cross-barr'd and bolted fast, fear no assault,
In at the window climbs, or o'er the tiles:
So clomb this first grand thief into God's fold;
So since into his church lewd hirelings climb.
Thence up he few, and on the tree of life,
The middle tree, and highest there that grew,
Sat like a cormorant; yet not true life
Thereby regain’d, but sat devising death
To them who liv'd; nor on the virtue thought
Of that life-giving plant, but only us'd
For prospect, what well us'd had been the pledge
Of immortality. So little knows
Any, but God alone, to value right
The good before him, but perverts best things
To worst abuse, or to their ineanest use.
Beneath him with new wonder now he views,
To all delight of human sense expos'd,
In narrow room, nature's whole wealth, yea more,
A heav'n on earth: for blissful Paradise
Of God the garden was, by hiin in th’ cast
Of Eden planted; Eden stretch'd her line
From Auran eastward to the royal towers
Of great selucia, built by Grecian kings,
Or where the sons of Eden long before
Dwelt in Telassar: in this pleasant soil
His far more pleasant garden God ordain’d;
Out of the fertile ground he caus’d to grow
All trees of noblest kind for sight, smell, taste;

el
High eminent, blooming ambrosial fruir
Of vegetable gold : and next to life,
Our death, the tree of knowledge, grew fast by;
Knowledge of good bought dear by knowing ill.
Southward through Eden went a river large,
Nor chang'd his course, but through the shaggy hill
Pass'd underneath ingulf'd; for God had thrown
That mountain as his garden-mould high rais'd

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Upon the rapid current, which through veins
of porous earth with kindly thirst up drawi,
Rose a fresh fountain, and with many a rill
Water'd the garden; thence united fell
Down the steep glade, and met the nether food,
Which from his darksome passage now appears,
And now divided into four main streams,
Runs diverse, wand'ring inany a famous reali
And country, whereof here needs no account;
But rather to tell how, if art could tell,
How from that sapphire fount the crisped brooks,
Rolling on orient pearls and sands of gold,
With mazy error under pendent shades
Ran nectar, visiting each plant, and fed
Flow'rs, worthy of Paradise, which not nice art
In beds and curious knots, but nature boun
Pour’d forth profuse on hilt, and dale, and plain,
Both where the morning-sun first warmly smote
The open field, and where the unpierc'd shade
Imbrown'd the noontide-bow'rs. Thus was this place
A happy rural seat of various views:
Groves whose rich trees wept od'rous gums and balm,
Others whose fruit, burnish'd with golden rinci,
Hung amiable, Hesperian fables true,
If true, here only, and of delicious taste:
Betwixt them lawns, or level downs, and flocks
Grazing the tender herb, were interpos’d,
Or palmy hillock; or the flow'ry lap
Of some irriguous valley spread her store,
Flow'rs of all hue, and without thorn the rose :
Another side, umbrageous grots and caves
Of cool recess, o'er which the mantling vine
Lays forth her purple grape, and gently creeps
Luxuriant: meanwhile inurm'ring waters fall
Down the slope hills, dispers'd, or in a lake,
That to the fringed bank with myrtle crown'd
Her chrystal mirror holds, unite their streams.
The birds their quire-apply; airs, verpal airs,
Breathirig the smell of ficid and grove, actune
The treinuling leaves, while universal Pan,

Knit with the Graces and the flours in dance,
Led on th' eternal spring. Not that fair field
Of Enna, where Proserpine gath'ring fiow'rs,
Herself a fairer fow'r, by gloomy Dis
Was gather'd, which cost Ceres all that pain
To seck her through the world; nor that sweet grove
of Daphne by Orontes, and th’inspir'd
Castalian spring, might with this Paradise
Of Eden strive; nor that Nyseian isle
Girt with the river Triton, where old Cham,
Whom Gentiles Ammon call, and Lybian Jove,
Ilid Amalthea, and her tlorid son,
Young Bacchus, from his step-daine Rhea's eye;
Nor where Abassin kings their issue guard,
Mount Amara, though this by some suppos'd
True Paradise under the Ethiop line
By Nilus head, enclos'd with shining rock,
A whole day's journey high, but wide remote
From this Assyrian garden; where the fiend
Saw undelighted all delight, all kind
of living creatures, new to sight, and strange.
Two of far nobler shape, erect and tall,
God-like erect, with native honour clad
In naked majesty, seem'd lords of all:
And worthy seem'd; for in their looks divine
The image of their glorious Maker shone,
Truth, wisdom, sanctitude severe and

pure,
(Severe, but in true filial freedom plac'd)
Whence true authority in men: though both
Not equal, as their sex not equal scemd:
For contemplation he, and valour form’d,
For softness she, and sweet attractive grace;
He for God only, she for God in him.
liis fair large front and eye sublime declar'd
Absolute rule; and hyacinthine locks
Ruund from his parted forelock manly hung
Clustring, but not beneath his shoulders broada
She, as a veil, down to the slender waist
Her unadorned golden tresses wore
Disheveld, but in wanton ringlets way'd,

As the vine curls her tendrils, which imply'd
Subjection, but requir'd with gentle sway,
And by her yielded, by him best receivid,
Yielded with coy submission, modest pride,
And sweet reluctant amorous delay.
Nor those mysterious parts were then conceald;
Then was not guilty shame, dishonest shame
of nature's works, honour dishonourable:
Sin-bred, how have ye troubled all mankind
With shows instead, mere shows of seeming pure,
And banish'd from man's life his happiest life,
Simplicity, and spotless innocence!
So pass’d they naked on, nor shund the sight
Of God or angels; for they thought no ill:
So hand in hand they pass'd, the loveliest pair
That ever since in love's embraces met;
Adam the goodliest man of men since born
His sons, the fairest of her daughters, Eve.
Under a iuft of shade that on a green
Stood whisp'ring soft, by a fresh fountain-side
They sat them down; and after no more toil
Of their sweet gard’ning labour than suffic'd
To recommend cool zephyr, and made ease
More easy, wholesome thirst and appetite
More grateful, to their supper-fruits they fell,
Nectarine fruits which the compliant boughs
Yielded thein, side-long as they sat recline
On the soft downy bank damask'd with flowers:
The sav'ry pulp they chew, and in the rind,
Still as they thirsted, scoop the brinming stream;
Nor gentle purpose, nor endearing smiles
Wanted, nor youthful dalliance, as beseeins
Fair couple, link'd in happy nuptial league,
Alone as they. About thein frisking play'd
All beasts of th’earth, since wild, and of all chase
In wood or wilderness, forest or den;
Sporting the lion rainp', and in his paw
Dandled the kid; bears, tygers, ounces, pards,
Gambol'd before them; th' unwieldy elephant,
To inake them mirth us'd all his might, and wreatb'd

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