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Guyon finds Mammon in a delve,
Sunning his treasure bore:
Is by bim tempted, and led down
To see bis secret store.
S Pilot well expert in per'lous wave,
That to a stedfast ftar his course hath bent, When foggy mists, or cloudy tempests have The faithful light of that fair lamp yblent, And cover'd heaven with hideous dreriment, Upon his card and compass firms his eye, The masters of his long experiment,
And to them dues the Iteady help apply,
Bidding his winged vessel fairly forward Ay:
So Guyon having lost his trusty guide,
Late left beyond that Idle lake, proceeds
Yet on his way, of none accompanide ;
And evermore himfelf with comfort feeds,
Of his own vertues, and praise-worthy deeds.
So long he yode, yet no adventure found,
Which Fame of her shrill trumpet worthy reads :
For still he traveld through wide wa steful ground, That nought but desert wilderness shew'd all around.
At last he came unto a gloomy glade,
Cover'd with boughs, and shrubs from heavens light,
Whereas he sitting found in secret shade,
An uncouth, salvage, and uncivil wight,
Of griefly hew, and foul ill favour'd light;
His face with smoak was tand, and eyes were bleard,
His head and beard with foot were ill bedight,
His coal-black hands did seem to have been seard
In smiths fire-spitting forge, and nails like claws appeard,
His Iron coat all overgrown with rust,
Was underneath enveloped with gold,
Whose glistring gloffe darkned with filthy dust,
Well it appeared to have been of old
A work of rich entail, and curious mold,
Woven with anticks and wild Imagery :
And in his lap a mass of coin he told,
And turned upside down, to feed his eye
And covetous desire with his huge treasury.
And round about him lay on every side
Great heaps of gold that never could be spent:
Of which, some were rude ore, not purifide
Of Mulcibers devouring element;
Some others were new driven, and distent
Into great ingots, and to wedges square';
Some in round plates withouten monument ;
But most were stampt, and in their metal bare
The antique shapes of Kings and Kefars strange and rare.
Soon as he Guyon faw, in great affright
And haste he rose, for to remove aside
Those precious hills from strangers envious fight,
And down them poured through an hole full
Into the hollow earth, them there to hide.
But Guyon lightly to him leaping, stayd
His hand, that trembled as one terrifide ;
And though himself were at the fight dismaid,
Yet him perforce restrain'd, and to him doubtful faid.
What are thou man (if man at all thou art)
That here in desert haft thine habitance,
And these rich heaps of wealth dost hide apart
From the worlds eye, and from her right usance ?
Thereat with staring eyes fixed ascaunce,
In great disdain he answerd ; Hardy Elf,
That darest view my direful countenance,
I read thee rash, and heedless of thyself,
To trouble my still feat, and heaps of pretious pelf.
God of the world and worldlings I me call,
Great Mammon, greatest God below the sky,
That of my plenty poure out unto all,
And unto none my graces do envy :
Riches, renown, and principality,
Honour, estate, and all this worldës good,
For which men swink and sweat incessantly,
From me do flow into an ample flood,
And in the hollow earth have their eternal brood.
Wherefore if me thou deign to serve and sew,
At thy command lo all thele mountains be ;
Or if to thy great mind, or greedy view,
All these may not fuffice, there shall to thee
Ten times so much be numbred frank and free.
Mammon, said he, thy Godheads vaunt is vain,
And idle offers of thy golden fee;
To them that covet such eye-glutting gain,
Proffer thy gifts, and fitter servants entertain.
Me ill befits, that in der-doing arms,
And honours suit my vowed days do spend,
Unto thy bounteous baytes, and pleasing charms,
With which weak men thou witchest, to attend :
Regard of worldly muck doth fouly blend
And low abase the high heroick spright,
That joys for crowns and kingdoms to contend;
Fair shields, gay steeds, bright arms be my delight :
Those be the riches fit for an advent'rous knight.
Vain-glorious Elfe, faid he, doft not thou weet,
That money can thy wants at will supply
Shields, steeds, and arms, and all things for thee mees
It can purvey in twinkling of an eye;
And crowns and Kingdoms to thee multiply.
Do not I Kings create, and throw the crown
Sometimes to him, thac low in duft doth lye ?
And him that reign'd, into his room chrust down, And whom Ilust, do heap with glory and renown?
All otherwise, said he, I riches read,
And deem them root of all disquietness ;
First got with guile, and then preserv'd with dread,
And after spent with pride and lavishness,
Leaving behind them grief and heaviness.
Infinite mischiefs of them do arise ;
Strife, and debate, bloodshed, and bitterness,
Outrageous wrong, and hellish covetise,
That noble heart (as great dishonour) doth despise,
Ne thine be kingdoms, ne the scepters thine ;
But realms and rulers thou dost both confound,
And loyal truth to treason dost incline;
Witness the guiltless blood pour'd oft on ground;
The crowned often Nain, the Nayer crown'd
The sacred diadem in pieces rent,
And purple robe gored with many a wound;
Castles surpriz’d, great cities sackt and brent :
So mak’ít thou Kings, and gainest wrongful government.
Long were to tell the troublous storms, that tofs
The private state, and make the life unsweet:
Who swelling fails in Caspian sea doth cross
And in frail wood on Adrian gulf doth feet,
Doth not (I ween) so many evils meet.
Then Mammon wexing wroth, And why then, said,
Are mortal men so fond and undiscreet,
So evil thing to seek unto their ayd,
And having not complain, and having it upbrayd?
Indeed, quoth he, through foul intemperance,
Frail men are oft captiv'd to covetise :
But would they think, with how small allowance
Untroubled nature doth herself suffice,
Such superfluities they would despise,
Which with sad cares empeach our native jows :
At the Well-head the purest streams arise :
But mucky filth his branching arms annoys,
And with uncomely weeds the gentle wave accloys.
The antique world, in his first flowring youth,
Found no defect in his Creators grace ;
But with glad thanks, and unreproved truth,
The gifts of loveraine bounty did embrace :
Like Angels life was then mens happy case;
But later ages pride, like corn-fed iteed,
Abusd her plenty, and fat swoln encrease
To all licentious luft and 'gan exceed
The measure of her mean, and natural first need.
Then 'gan a cursed hand the quiet womb
Of his great grandmother with steel to wound,
And the hid treasures in her secret tomb,
With sacrilege to dig. Therein he found
Fountains of gold and Glver to abound,
Of which the matter of his huge desire
And pompous pride eftfoons he did compound;
Then avarice 'gan through his veins inspire
His greedy Aames, and kindled life-devouring fire.
Son, said he then, let be thy bitter scorn,
And leave the rudeness of that antique age
To them, that liv'd therein in state forlorn;
Thou that doft live in later times, must wage
Thy works for wealth, and life for gold engage..
If then thee lift my offred grace to use,
Take what thou please of all this surplusage;
If thee list not, leave have thou to refuse :
But thing refused, do not afterward accuse.
Me list nat, said the Elfin Knight, receive .
Thing offred, till I know it well be got :
Ne wote I, but thou didst these goods bereave
From rightful owner by unrighteous lot,
Or that blood-guiltiness or guile them blot.
Perdy, quoth he, yet never eye did view
Ne tongue did tell, ne hand these handled not,
But fate I have them kept in secret mew,
From heavens fight, and powre of all which them pursue.