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And worship me as thy superior lord,
Easily done, and hold them all of me;
For what can less so great a gift deserve?

Whom thus our Saviour answer'd with disdain. 170

I never lik'd thy talk, thy offers less,

Now both abhor, since thou hast dar'd to utter
Th' abominable terms, impious condition;
But I indure the time, till which expir'd,
Thou hast permission on me.
It is written
The first of all commandments, Thou shalt worship
The Lord thy God, and only him shalt serve;
And dar'st thou to the Son of God propound
To worship thee accurs'd, now more accurs'd
For this attempt bolder than that on Eve,

seemed most likely to forward his designs. At the beginning of this book, after repeated defeats he is described as flung from his hope; but still he proceeds. Upon his next attack failing, the paroxysm of his desperation rises to such a height, that, thrown off his guard, he intemperately betrays himself and his purpose by bringing forward those abominable terms, which, could it have been possible for his temptations to have succeeded, we may imagine were intended in the end to have been proposed to our Lord. This then is the avayals, or full discovery who Satan really was; for though Jesus in the first book (v. 356.) had declared that he knew the Tempter through his disguise, still the temptation proceeds as if he had not known him. As to proposing the condition together with the gifts, this I conceive could

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It

not be done without changing the whole plan of the poem; as by pushing the question immediately to a point, it must have precluded the gradually progressive temptations which the poet so finely brings forward. might perhaps have been wished that the circumstance of Satan's thus betraying himself and his purpose had been kept back till the subsequent temptation had been tried, and had also failed. But the apologetic speech of Satan, (v. 196.) in which he so far recovers himself, and repairs the indiscretion of his present irritation, as to pave the way for another temptation, is not only marked with such admirable art and address, but gives likewise such material variety and relief to this part of the poem, that I cannot wish it to have been in any respect different from what it is. Dunster.

And more blasphemous? which expect to rue.
The kingdoms of the world to thee were given,
Permitted rather, and by thee usurp'd;
Other donation none thou canst produce:
If giv'n, by whom but by the King of kings,
God over all supreme? if giv'n to thee,
By thee how fairly is the giver now
Repaid? But gratitude in thee is lost
Long since. Wert thou so void of fear or shame,
As offer them to me the Son of God,

To me my own, on such abhorred pact,
That I fall down and worship thee as God?
Get thee behind me; plain thou now appear'st
That evil one, Satan for ever damn'd.

To whom the Fiend with fear abash'd replied.
Be not so sore offended, Son of God,
Though sons of God both angels are and men,
If I to try whether in higher sort

Than these thou bear'st that title, have propos'd

188.

-all good to me is lost; Evil be thou my good!

-But gratitude in thee is being the Son of God, he must lost of course be like him whose son Long since.] he is; and being like him, it Milton had made Satan declare necessarily follows, that he is long before, Par. Lost, iv. 109. lord and king. S. Athanas. Or. 3. contra Arianos. Op. vol. i. p. 387. edit. Col. Calton.

Dunster.

191. To me my own,] The right, which the demon pretends to, over the kingdoms of the world, is by gift; but Christ claims them as his own by nature, and by virtue of his Sonship. Υίος γας ων του Θεου, όμοιος αυτου αν είη ομοιος WY, KUVTNG εστι και κύριος και βασιλευς.

For

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191. -abhorred pact,] He uses the word pact, as it is the technical term for the contracts of sorcerers with the devil. Warburton.

199.

-have propos'd What both from men and angels I receive, &c.]

The terms of worship and vassalage. See v. 166. supra. Dunster.

What both from men and angels I receive,
Tetrarchs of fire, air, flood, and on the earth
Nations besides from all the quarter'd winds,
God of this world invok'd and world beneath;
Who then thou art, whose coming is foretold
To me so fatal, me it most concerns.
The trial hath indamag'd thee no way,
Rather more honour left and more esteem;
Me nought advantag'd, missing what I aim'd.
Therefore let pass, as they are transitory,
The kingdoms of this world; I shall no more
Advise thee; gain them as thou canst, or not.
And thou thyself seem'st otherwise inclin'd
Than to a worldly crown, addicted more
To contemplation and profound dispute,
As by that early action may be judg'd,
When slipping from thy mother's eye thou went'st
Alone into the temple, there wast found
Amongst the gravest Rabbies disputant
On points and questions fitting Moses' chair

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215

213.

-addicted more

To contemplation] Milton, Par. Lost, iv. 297. describes Adam in his state of innocence for contemplation formed. Dunster.

217. there wast found] In Milton's own edition, and in most of the following ones, it was printed by mistake was found; but the syntax plainly requires wast, as there is thou went'st in the verse preceding. 219. Moses' chair was the chair in -fitting Moses' chair,] which the doctors sitting expounded the law either publicly

Teaching not taught; the childhood shows the man,
As morning shows the day. Be famous then
By wisdom; as thy empire must extend,
So let extend thy mind o'er all the world
In knowledge, all things in it comprehend:
All knowledge is not couch'd in Moses' law,
The Pentateuch, or what the Prophets wrote;
The Gentiles also know, and write, and teach
To admiration, led by nature's light;
And with the Gentiles much thou must converse,
Ruling them by persuasion as thou mean❜st;
Without their learning how wilt thou with them,
Or they with thee hold conversation meet?
How wilt thou reason with them, how refute

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Their idolisms, traditions, paradoxes?
Error by his own arms is best evinc'd.
Look once more e'er we leave this specular mount
Westward, much nearer by southwest, behold
Where on the Ægean shore a city stands

234. Their idolisms, traditions, paradoxes?] Idolisms is, I believe, a word of Milton's fabrication. It seems to mean not so much the idolatrous worship of the Gentiles, as the opinions with which they might endeavour to defend it. Our author has idolists, Sams. Agon. 453.

-and op'd the mouths Of Idolists and Atheists;

By traditions we may understand opinions collected from those philosophers who instructed publicly, without committing their precepts to writing, which was the case with Pythagoras, Numa, and Lycurgus. See the lives of the two latter by Plutarch. Paradoxes allude to the paradoxes of the Stoic philosophers, then in high repute. Evinced (v.235.) is used in its Latin signification of subdued, conquered; in which sense it is more forcible and appropriate, than as we commonly use it for shewn, proved. Dunster.

236.this specular mount] This mount of speculation, as in Paradise Lost, xii. 588, where see the note.

237. Westward, much nearer by southwest,] This corresponds exactly to our Saviour's supposed situation upon mount Taurus. The following description of Athens and its learning is extremely grand and beautiful.

235

Milton's muse, as was before observed, is too much cramped down by the argumentative cast of his subject, but emerges upon every favourable occasion, and like the sun from under a cloud bursts out into the same bright vein of poetry, which shines out more frequently, though not more strongly, in the Paradise Lost. Thyer.

This might be understood W. by S. that is, one point from west towards southwest; which is nearly the actual position of Athens, with respect to Mount Niphates. Or it may only mean, that as Athens was four degrees south of Rome, our Lord must now direct his view so much more to the southwest, than when he was looking at Rome, which lay nearly west of Mount Niphates. Dunster.

And the words much nearer seem also to shew that the description had reference to the position of Rome, which was more distant from the specular mount. E.

238. Where on the Egean shore a city stands] So Milton caused this verse to be printed, whereby it appears that he would have the word 'gean pronounced with the accent upon the first syllable, as in Paradise Lost, i. 746. and as Fairfax often uses it, as was there remarked. Built nobly, and Homer in his time

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