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This day to Dagon is a solemn feast,
1311 With facrifices, triumph, pomp, and games ; Thy strength they know surpassing human rate, And now some public proof thereof require To honor this great feast, and great assembly; 1315 Rise therefore with all speed and come along, Where I will see thee hearten'd and fresh clad To' appear as fits before th’illustrious lords.
SAMSON. Thou know'st I am an Hebrew, therefore tell them, Our Law forbids at their religious rites
1320 My presence ; for that cause I cannot come.
OFFICER. This answer, be assurd, will not content them.
SAMSON. Have they not sword-players, and Of gymnic artists, wrestlers, riders, runners, Juglers and dancers, antics, mummers, mimics, 1325 But they must pick me out with thackles tir’d,
1325. mummers, mimics,] It mirs? The table of Errata to the was printed mummers, mimirs ; first edition hath set us right, inmummers are maskers according to structing us to read mimics, but Junius, Skinner, and the other not one of the editions have fol. etymologists; but what are mi- lowed it.
And over-labor'd at their public mill
1330 Or make a game
1347. Perbaps thou fhalt bave
cause to forrow indeed.] Here the cataltrophe is anticipated, as before yer. 1266,
Brooks no delay: is this thy refolution ? 1344
S A MSON.
and who knows how he may report 1350
1355 After my great transgression, so requite Favor renew'd, and add a greater sin By prostituting holy things to idols;
And such anticipations are usual as cannot be perfectly comprehendwith the best dramatic writers, ed, till they are fully explain'd by who knowing their own plan open
the event. The speaker himself is by degrees, and drop such hints can only be supposed to have some
A Nazarite in place abominable
1361 What act more execrably unclean, profane ?
CHORUS. Yet with this strength thou serv'st the Philistines, Idolatrous, uncircumcis’d, unclean.
SAMSON. Not in their idol-worship, but by labor 1365 Honest and lawful to deserve my food Of those who have me in their civil
power. CHORUS. Where the heart joins not, outward acts defile not.
SAMSON. Where outward force constrains, the sentence holds. But who constrains me to the temple’of Dagon, 1370 Not dragging? the Philistian lords command. Commands are no constraints. If I obey them,
general meaning, and not a distinct rian's begging a dispensation of conception of all the particulars, this sort from Elisha, which he fomewhat like the high-priest in seemingly grants him. See the Gospel, who prophecied with- Kings V. 18, 19. Thyer. out his knowing it.
1384. I with this messenger will 1377. Yet that he may dispense go along, ] With what meffen&c) Milton here probably had in ger? It was not expressly said beview the ftory of Naaman the Sy- fore that the messenger was com
I do it freely, vent'ring to displease
dishonor 1385 Our Law, or stain my vow of Nazarite. If there be ought of presage in the mind, This day will be remarkable in
ing; it was implied indeed in what the Chorus, but seems hardly a the Chorus had said,
fufficient intimation to a blind How wilt thou here come off man, unless we suppose him to
know that the messenger was comsurmounts my reach:
ing by the same impulse that he and this might very well be un- felt rousing him to something exderstood by a man, who could fee traordinary. the messenger coming as well as