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I 21

Their wines of Setia, Cales, and Falerne,
Chios, and Crete, and how they quaff in gold,
Crystal and myrrhine cups imboss'd with gems
And studs of pearl, to me should'st tell who thirst
And hunger still: then embassies thou show'st
From nations far and nigh; what honour that,
But tedious waste of time to fit and hear
So

many hollow complements and lies,
Outlandish flatteries ? then proceed'st to talk 125
Of th’emperor, how easily subdued,
How gloriously; I shall, thou say'st, expel
A brutish monster : what if I withal
Expel a Devil who first made him such ?
Let his tormenter conscience find him out;

For

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liger, Salmasius and others con ac temulentiæ causa tenere Indiam tend from this verse of Propertius juvat: et aurum jam acceffio eft. IV. V. 26.

Or perhaps the words imboss'd with Murrheaque in Parthis pocula gems, &c refer only to gold first men

tion'd, which is no unusual concocta focis,

struction. They quaf in gold imboss'd that they were like our porcelane: with gems and si uds of pearl. but if they were so very fragil as 130. Let his tormenter conscience they are represented to be, it is find him out;] Milton had in not easy to conceive how they view what Tacitus and Suetonius could be imboss'd with gems and studs have related. Tacitus Ann. VI. 6. of pearl. I suppose our author af- Infigne visum eft earum Cæfaris serted it from the words immedi- literarum initium ; nam his verbis ately following in Pliny. Nec hoc exorsus. eft : Quid fcribam vobis fuit satis : turba gemmarum pota- P. C. aut quomodo fcribam, aut quid mus, et smaragdis teximus calices: omnino non scribam hoc tempore ? Dii

me

For him I was not sent, nor yet to free That people victor once, now vile and base, Deservedly made vassal, who once just, Frugal, and mild, and temp’rate, conquer'd well, But t.govern ill the nations under yoke,

135 Peeling their provinces, exhausted all By lust and rapine ; first ambitious grown Of triumph, that insulting vanity; Then cruel, by their sports to blood inur'd Of fighting beasts, and men to beasts expos’d, 140 Luxurious by their wealth, and greedier still,

And

to reign

me Deaque pejus perdant quam perire 145. Or could of inward saves quotidie fentio, fi fcio. Adeo faci make out ward free? ] This nora atque flagitia sua ipfi quoque noble sentiment Milton explains in supplicium verterant. Sueto more fully, and expresses more difnius Tiber. 67. Poftremo semet fusively in his Paradise Lost. XII. ipse pertæsus talis epiftolæ princi- '90. pio tantum non summam malorum - Therefore fince he permits suorum profeffus eft : Quid fcribam Within himself unworthy pow'rs &c. where perhaps it should be, tali epistolæ principio. Jortin. Over free reason, God in judg

140. Of hghting beasts, and men ment just 10 beafos expos’d, ] The fighting beasts Subjects him from without to vioare a poor instance of the Roman

lent lords ; &c. to ver. 101. cruelty in their sports, in compa- So also again in his 12th Sonnet, rison of the gladiators; who might have been introduced so naturally,

Licence they mean, when they and easily here, only by putting

cry Liberty; the word gladiators in place of the

For wbo loves that, must first be other two, that one may very well

wife and good. be surpriz'd at the poet's omitting No one had ever more refin'd nothem.' See Seneca's 7th Epistle. tions of true liberty than Milton, Calton. and I have often thought that there

And from the daily scene effeminate.
What wise and valiant man would seek to free
These thus degenerate, by themselves inflav'd,
Or could of inward llaves make outward free?

145
Know therefore when my season comes to sit
On David's throne, it shall be like a tree
Spreading and overshadowing all the earth,
Or as a stone that shall to pieces dalh
All monarchies besides throughout the world, 150
And of my kingdom there shall be no end :
Means there shall be to this, but what the means,

Is

well was,

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never was a greater proof of the a tree &c; alluding to the parable weakness of human nature, than of the mustard-feed grown into a that he with a head so clear, and tree, so that the birds lodge in the a heart I really believe perfectly branches thereof, Matt. XIII. 32. honest and disinterested, should and to (what that parable also reconcur in supporting such a tyrant spects) Nebuchadnezzar's dream of and profess'd trampler upon the the great tree whose hight reached liberties of his country as Crom unto heaven, and the fight thereof to Thyer.

the end of all the earth, Dan. IV.

Tertullian also compares the king146. Know therefore when my fea- dom of Christ to that of Nebu

Jon comes to fit &c] A particu- chadnezzar. See Grotius in Matt. lar manner of expression, but fre- Or as a stone &c; alluding to the quent in Milton ; as if he had said, stone in another of NebuchadnezKnow therefore when the season zar's dreams, which brake the comes for me to sit on David's image in pieces, and so this kingthrone, it fall be like a free &c. dom fall break in pieces, and conFor his feajon to be like a tree fays fume all these kingdoms, and it shall Mr. Sympson is strange language, Rand for ever. Dan. II. 44

And and therefore reads I shall be like of my kingdom there shall be no end: a tree : but it refers to throne. The the very words of Luke I. 33. throne of David Mhall then be like with only the necessary change of

the

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Is not for thee to know, nor me to tell.

To whom the Tempter impudent reply'd. I fee all offers made by me how slight

155 Thou valuest, because offer'd, and reject'st: Nothing will please the difficult and nice, Or nothing more than still to contradict : On th' other side know also thou, that I On what I offer set as high esteem,

160 Nor what I part with mean to give for nought; All these which in a moment thou behold'st, The kingdoms of the world to thee I give; For giv'n to me, I give to whom I please, No trifle ; yet with this reserve, not else, 165 On this condition, if thou wilt fall down, 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

the person; and of his kingdom there sentence is better as a general obAhall be no end.

servation. 157. Nothing will please the diffi 166. On this condition, if thou

cult and nice,] Mr. Jortin and wilt fall down, &c.] In my Mr. Sympfon say that perhaps we opinion (and Mr. Thyer concurs Should read

with me in the same observation) thee difficult and nice:

there is not any thing in the dis

position and conduct of the whole but I think the i&tus falls better poem fo justly liable to censure as in the common reading, and the the aukward and preposterous in

troduction

Whom thus our Saviour answer'd with disdain. I never lik'd thy talk, thy offers less,

171 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

175 The first of all commandments, Thou shalt worn ip 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, 180 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, 185 God over all supreme? if giv’n to thee,

By

troduction of this incident in this Saviour would accept the kingplace. The Tempter should have doms of the world upon th' abomiproposed the condition, at the nable terms of falling down and same time that he offer'd the gifts; worhipping him, just after he had as he doth likewise in Scripture: rejected them unclogg'd with any but after his gifts had been abso terms at all? Well might the author lutely refus’d, to what purpofe say that Satan impudent reply'd : was it to propose the impious con but I think that doth not ensirely dition? Could he imagin that our solve the objection. VOL. I.

M

191, 7

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