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To me was pleasing; all my mind was set
Serious to learn and know, and thence to do
What might be public good; myself I thought
Born to that end, born to promote all truth,

All righteous things : therefore above my years,
The law of God I read, and found it sweet,
Made it


whole delight, and in it grew
To such perfection, that ere yet my age
Had measur’d twice fix years, at our great feast
I went into the temple, there to hear
The teachers of our law, and to propose




οξυ δαναζησας, ταχινοι δε Digna ætate animus jam tum ηλθον ιελοι. .

volvebat adulta. Αλλ' εσι παιδG. εων εφρασσαο And Pindar in like manner praises waula TEMEIA.

Demophilus. Pyth. Od. IV. 501, Swift was thy growth, and early κεινο- γαρ εν παισι νε©», εν δε βελαις was thy bloom,

@pecfus. Our author might allude But earlier wisdom crown'd thy to these passages, but he certainly

infant days. Fortin. alluded to the words of the ApofHenry Stephens's translation of tle, 1 Cor. XIII. 11. only inverting

the thought. When I was a child, the latter verse is very much to

Į Ipake as a child, &c. our purpose, Verum ætate, puer, digna es

204. --myself I thought

Born to that end, born to promote meditatus adulta:

all truth,] Alluding to our Saor rather his more paraphrastical viour's words, John XVII. 37. To translation,

this end was I born, and for this

cause came I into the world, that I Verum ætate puer, puerili haud should bear witness unto the truth.

more folebas Ludere ; fed jam tum tibi feria --at our great feast] The cuncta placebant,

feast of the pasover, Luke II. 41.


?14. And

What might improve my knowledge or their own;
And was admir'd by all : yet this not all
To which my spi'rit aspir’d; victorious deeds 215
Flam'd in my heart, heroic acts, one while
To rescue Israel from the Roman yoke,
Then to subdue and quell o'er all the earth
Brute violence and proud tyrannic power,
Till truth were freed, and equity restor’d :
Yet held it more humane, more heav'nly first
By winning words to conquer willing hearts,
And make persuasion do the work of fear ;


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214. And was admir'd by all :)

victorque volentes For all that heard him were astonish Per populos dat jura, viamque ed at bis understanding and answers, affectat Olympo. Luke II. 47 219. Brute violence] So again in

Our author was always a declar'd the Mask.

enemy to persecution, and a friend

to liberty of conscience. He rises And noble

grace that dash'd brute above himself, whenever he speaks violence. Thyer.

of the subject; and he muft have 221. Yet held it more humane,

felt it very strongly, to have exmore heav'nly firft &c.] Here press’d it so happily: For as Mr. breathes the true spirit of tolera

Thyer juftly remarks upon this tion in these lines, and the fenti- passage, there is a peculiar softment is very •fitly put into the

ness and harmony in these lines, mouth of him, who came not to de- exactly suited to that gentle spirit

of love that breathes in them ; ftroy mens lives, but to save them. The allitteration of w's in this and that man must have an inquiline, and the assonance of winning feel the force of them.

fitorial spirit indeed who does not and willing have a very beautiful effect,

222.—to conquer willing hearts,] By winning words to conquer Yirgil Georg. IV. 561. willing hearts.




At least to try, and teach the erring soul
Not wilfully mil-doing, but unware
Milled; the stubborn only to subdue.
These growing thoughts my mother foon perceiving
By words at times cast forth inly rejoic'd,
And said to me apart, High are thy thoughts
O Son, but nourish them and let them soar

To what highth sacred virtue and true worth
Can raise them, though above example high ;
By matchless deeds express thy matchless Sire.
For know, thou art no son of mortal man;
Though men esteem thee low of parentage, 235
Thy father is th' eternal King who rules
All Heav'n and Earth, Angels and Sons of men ;
A messenger from God foretold thy birth
Conceiv'd in me a virgin, he foretold


--victorque volentes the negligence of the former ediPer populos dat jura

tors and printers, who have not so which expression of Virgil's, by much as corrected the Errata pointthe way, seems to be taken from ed out to them by Milton himself, Xenophon, Oeconomic. XXI. 12. but have carefully followed all the Ου γαρ πανυ μοι δοκει όλον τελι το blunders of the first edition, and αγαθον ανθρωπινον ειναι, anda gelov, increased the number with new το εθελονιων αρχειν.

I could add ones of their own.

This passage other passages of Xenophon, which affords an instance. In all the ediVirgil has manifestly copied. tions we read


-the stubborn only to destroy ; 226.--the stubborn only to fubdue.] We cannot fufficiently condemn and this being good sense, the


Thou shouldst be great, and fit on David's throne,
And of thy kingdom there shall be no end. 241
At thy nativity a glorious quire
Of Angels in the fields of Bethlehem Lung
To shepherds watching at their folds by night,
And told them the Messiah now was born

Where they might see him, and to thee they came,
Directed to the manger where thou lay'st,
For in the inn was left no better room:
A star, not seen before, in Heav'n appearing
Guided the wise men thither from the east, 250
To honor thee with incense, myrrh, and gold,
By whose bright course led on they found the place,
Affirming it thy star new grav’n in Heaven,
By which they knew the king of Israel born.
Just Simeon and prophetic Anna, warn’d 255


mistake is not so easily detected: Virgil. Æn. I. 502. but in the first edition the reader

Latonæ tacitum pertentant gau. is desired in the table of Errata

dia pectus. Jortin. for destroy to read subdue ; and if we consider it, this is the more 241.-~there should be no end.] proper word, more suitable to the We have restored the reading of humane and heavenly character of Milton's own edition, pould not the speaker; and besides it answers hall, as before to the subdue and quell in ver. 218.

Thou should be great The son of man came not to destroy mens lives, &c. Luke IX. 56. 255. Juft Simeon and prophetic 227.--my mother foon perceiving Anna,] It may not be impro--inly rejoic’d, ] per to remark how strictly our au


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By vision, found thee in the temple, and spake
Before the altar and the vested priest,
Like things of thee to all that present stood.
· This having heard, strait I again revolv'd
The law and prophets, searching what was writ 260
Concerning the Messiah, to our scribes
Known partly, and soon found of whom they

I am ; this chiefly, that
Through many a hard assay ev’n to the death,
Ere I the promis'd kingdom can attain,
Or work redemption for mankind, whose fins
Full weight must be transferr’d



my way must lie


upon my head.

25. and

thor adheres to the Scripture hi- till Elias had anointed and declared ftory, not only in the particulars him. Xpus de si xat yeyevlas, xau which he relates, but also in the εσι πε, αγνωσG- εσι, και εδε αυτος very epithets which he affixes to σω εαυτον επιςαται, εδε εχει δυναμιν the persons; as here Just Simeon, Tiva, MEXipos

αν ελθων Ηλιας χριση because it is said Luke Is.

αυτον, και φανερον σασι σοιηση. Juit. the same man was just: and pro- Mart. Dial. cum Tryph. p. 226. phetic Anna, because it is said Luke Ed. Col.

Calton. II. 36. and there was one Anna a

266. -whose fins prophetess. The like accuracy may Full weight must be transferr'd be observed in all the rest.

upon my head.] Isaiah Lili. 6.

The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity 262.--and foon found of whom

they spake I am ;] The Jews thought that 271. Not knew by fight] Tho' the Messiah, when he came, would Jesus and John the Baptist were be without all power and distinc- related, yet they were brought up tion, and unknown even to himself, in different countries, and had no


of us all.

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