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The winds, with wonder whist,
Smoothly the waters kist,

Whispering new joys to the mild ocean,
Who now hath quite forgot to rave,
While birds of calm sit brooding on the charmed wave.

VI.

The stars with deep amaze,
Stand fix'd in steadfast gaze,

Bending one way their precious influence;
And will not take their flight,
For all the morning light,

Or Lucifer, that often warn'd them thence;
But in their glimmering orbs did glow,
Until their Lord himself bespake, and bid them go.

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VII.
And, though the shady gloom
Had given day her room,

The sun himself withheld his wonted speed;
And hid his head for shame,
As his inferiour flame

The new-enlighten'd world no more should need:
He saw a greater sun appear
Than his bright throne, or burning axletree could bear.

VIII.
The shepherds on the lawn,
Or e'er the point of dawn,

Sat simply chatting in a rustick row;
Full little thought they then,
That the mighty Pan

Was kindly come to live with them below:
Perhaps their loves, or else their sheep,
Was all that did their silly thoughts so busy keep:

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When such musick sweet
Their hearts and ears did greet,
As never was by mortal finger strook;

05 Divinely-warbled voice Answering the stringed noise,

As all their souls in blissful rapture took: The air, such pleasure loth to lose, With thousand echoes still prolongs each heavenly close. 100

can be more poetically grand then this | glorious line. The whole stanza breathes stanza. In all Milton's poble poetry the essence of descriptive poetry. there are few passages finer than this. 89. That the mighty Pin, ac. That is, BEYDGES.

to live with the shepherds on the lawn. 68. While birds of calm, &c. Another Christ is frequently styled “the Shep

herd" in the Scriptures.

Nature, that heard such sound,
Beneath the hollow round,

Of Cynthia's seat, the aery region thrilling,
Now was almost won,
To think her part was done,

And that her reign had here its last fulfilling:
She knew such harmony alone
Could hold all heaven and earth in happier union.

105

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110

115

120

125

At last surrounds their sight
A globe of circular light,

That with long beams the shamefaced night array'd;
The helmed Cherubim,
And sworded Ceraphim,

Are seen in glittering ranks with wings display'd,
Harping in loud and solemn quire,
With unexpressive notes, to Heaven's new-born IIeir.

XII.
Such musick, as 'tis said,
Before was never made,

But when of old the sons of morning sung,
While the Creator great
His constellations set,

And the well-balanced world on hinges hung;
And cast the dark foundations deep,
And bid the weltering waves their oozy channel keep.

XIII.
Ring out, ye crystal spheres,
Once bless our human ears,

If ye have power to touch our senses so;
And let your silver chime
Move in melodious time;

And let the bass of Heaven's deep organ blow;
And, with your ninefold harmony,
Make up full consort to the angelic symphony.

XIV.
For, if such holy song
Enwrap our fancy long,

Time will run back, and fetch the age of gold;
And speckled Vanity
Will sicken soon and die,

And leprous Sin will melt from earthly mould;
And Hell itself will pass away,

And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day. 140 131. Ninefold harmony. See Arcales, means spots, the marks of discuse and line 62.

corruption, and the symptoms of ap136. Speckled Vanity. Vanity dressed proaching death.--T. WARTON. in a variety of gaudy colours: unless he | 140. The peering day is nere the first dawn of the Gospel, by the birth of the is a fine picture by Guido, representing Redemer. The Sun of Righteousness Michael the arch-angel treading on Satan, fully rose, when he began to exercise his who has such a tail as is here (describedministry.--DUNSTER.

130

135 145

150

XV.
Yea, Truth and Justice then
Will down return to men,

Orb'd in a rainbow; and, like glories wearing,
Mercy will sit between,
Throned in celestial sheen,

With radiant feet the tissued clouds down steering;
And Heaven, as at some festival,
Will open wide the gates of her high palace hall.

XVI.
But wisest Fate says no,
This must not yet be so;

The Babe yet lies in smiling infancy,
That on the bitter cross
Must redeem our loss;

So both himself and us to glorify:
Yet first, to those ychain'd in sleep,

155 The wakeful trump of doom must thunder through the deep;

XVII.
With such a horrid clang
As on Mount Sinai rang,

While the red fire and smouldering clouds out brake: The aged earth aghast,

160 With terrour of that blast,

Shall from the surface to the centre shake;
When, at the world's last session,
The dreadful Judge in middle air shall spread his throne.

XVIII.
And then at last our bliss
Full and perfect is,

But now begins; for, from this happy day,
The old Dragon, under ground
In straiter limits bound,

Not half so far casts his usurped sway,
And, wroth to see his kingdom fail,
Swindges the scaly horrour of his folded tail.

165

170

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Jos WARTOX. The word swindge is now 140. With radiant feet. Is. lii. 7.

spelt without the d. 156. The wakeful trump, &c. A line of 173. The oracles, &c. Attention is irregreat energy, elegant and sublime.-T. sistibly awakened and engnged, by the WARTON,

air of solemnity and enthusiasm that 172. Swindges the scaly horrour, &c. reigns in this stanza and some that fol. This strong inage is copied from the de low. Such is the power of true poetry, Kcriptious of serpents and drayons in the that one is almost inclined to believe the old Romances and in Ariosto. There superstitions real.-Jos. WARTON.

Runs through the arched roof in words deceiving. 175 Apollo from his shrine Can no more divine,

With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving. No nightly trance, or breathed spell, Inspires the pale-eyed priest from the prophetick cell. 180

xx. The lonely mountains o'er, And the resounding shore,

A voice of weeping heard and loud lament;
From haunted spring and dale,
Edged with poplar pale,

The parting Genius is with sighing sent:
With flower-inwoven tresses torn,
The nymphs in twilight shade of tangled thickets mourn.

185

190

XXI.
In consecrated earth,
And on the holy hearth,

The Lars and Lemures moan with midnight plaint:
In urns, and altars round,
A drear and dying sound

Affrights the Flamens at their service quaint;
And the chill marble seems to sweat,
While each peculiar Power foregoes his wonted seat.

195

ΧΧΙΙ.
Peor and Baälim
Forsake their temples dim,

With that twice-batter'd god of Palestine;
And mooned Ashtaroth,
Heaven's queen and mother both,

Now sits not girt with tapers' holy shine:
The Libyck Hammon shrinks his horn;
In vain the Tyrian maids their wounded Thammuz mourn:

200

205

ΧΧΙΙΙ.
And sullen Moloch, fled,
Hath left in shadows dread

His burning idol all of blackest hue:
In vain with cymbals' ring
They call the grisly king,

In dismal dance about the furnace blue:

210

183. A roice of weeping, &c. Matt. ii. 18. ton added this word to our language." 191. The Lars (or rather Lares) and TODD. Lemures were heathen household gods. 201. Hraren's queen and mother. She

197. Per. See Paradise Lost, i. +12. was called regina cali and mater Deum.

199, Twice-batter'd god, Dagon. See 202. Shine is used by many of the old 1 Sam. v.3, 4.

writers as a noun. 200. Mooned, taken for the moon. “Mil. 1 205. Moloch. See Par. Lost, i.392. Mil. ton, like a trur poet. in describing the 235 Foyes. It is a very poetical mode Syrian superstitips, selects ruh is were of expressing the departure of the fairies most susceptible of poetical enlargement: at the approach of morning, to say that and which, from the wildness of their they fly after the stands of Wight.-T. Ceremonies, were most interesting to the WARTOX.--212. Handmaid lump; alludfancy.--T. WAKI . -- 215. Inshower'd, ing, perhaps to the parable of the Ten theru being no rain in Egypt.

The brutish gods of Nile as fast,
Isis, and Orus, and the dog Anubis, haste:

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Nor is Osiris seen
In Memphian grove or green,

Trampling the unshower'd grass with lowings loud: 215
Nor can he be at rest
Within his sacred chest;

Nought but profoundest hell can be his shroud:
In vain with timbrell’d anthems dark
The sable-stoled sorcerers bear his worshipt ark.

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XXV.
He feels from Juda's land
The dreaded Infant's hand;

The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn:
Nor all the gods beside
Longer dare abide;

Not Typhon huge ending in snaky twine:
Our Babe, to show his Godhead true,
Can in his swaddling bands controul the damned crew.

225

XXVI.

So, when the sun in bed,
Curtain'd with cloudy red,

230
Pillows his chin upon an orient wave,
The flocking shadows pale
Troop to the infernal jail;

Each fetter'd ghost slips to his several grave; And the yellow-skirted Fayes Fly after the night-steeds, leaving their moon-lov'd maze.

235

XXVII.
But see, the Virgin blest
Hath laid her Babe to rest:

Time is, our tedious song should here have ending:
Ileaven's youngest-teemed star
Hath fix'd her polish'd car,

Her sleeping Lord with handmaid lamp attending;
And all about the courtly stable
Bright-harness'd Angels sit in order serviceable.

240

Virgins in the Gospel.

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