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of judgment, not of passion, and is managed with reason, not with heat; it is such a dispute as we may suppose might have happened in Paradise, had man continued happy and innocent. There is great delicacy in the moralities which are interspersed in Adam's discourse, and wbich the most ordinary reader cannot but take notice of. The force of love which the father of mankind so finely describes in the eighth book, and which is inserted in the foregoing paper, shows itself here in many fine instances; as in those fond regards he cast towards Eve at her parting from him :
Her long with ardent look his eye pursued
To be returned by noon amid the bower.
-Adam the while
Solace in her return, so long delayed. But particularly in that passionate speech, where, seeing her irrecoverably lost, he resolves to perish with her, rather tban to live without her.
-Some cursed fraud
Mine never shall be parted, bliss or woe.
The several wiles which are put in practice by the tempter, when he found Eve separated from her husband, the many pleasing images of nature which are intermixed in this part of the story, with its gradual and regular progress to the fatal catastrophe, are so very remarkable, that it would be superfluous to point out their respective beauties.
I have avoided mentioning any particular similitudes in my remarks on this great work, because I have given a general account of them in my paper on the first book. There is one, however, in this part of the poem which I shall here quote, as it is not only very beautiful, but the closest of
any in the whole
mean that where the serpent is described as rolling forward in all his pride, animated by the evil spirit, and conducting Eve to her destruction, while Adam was at too great a distance from her to give her his assistance. These several particulars are all of them wrought into the following similitude:
-Hope elevates, and joy
There swallowed up and lost, from succour far. That secret intoxication of pleasure, with all those transient flushings of guilt and joy, which the poet represents in our first parents upon their eating the forbidden fruit, to those flaggings of spirit, damps of sorrow, and mutual accusations which succeed it, are conceived with a wonderful imagination, and described in very natural sentiments.
When Dido, in the fourth Æneid, yielded to that fatal temptation which ruined her, Virgil tells us the earth trembled, the heavens were filled with flashes of lightning, and the nymphs howled upon the mountain-tops. Milton, in the same poetical spirit, has described all nature as disturbed upon Eve's eating the forbidden fruit.
So saying, her rash hand in evil hour
That all was lostUpon Adam's falling into the same guilt, the whole creation appears a second time in convulsions.
-He scrupled not to eat
Wept at completing of the mortal sin. As all Nature suffered by the guilt of our first parents, these symptoms of trouble and consternation are wonderfully imagined, not only as prodigies, but as marks of her sympathizing in the fall of man.
Adam's converse with Eve, after having eaten the forbidden fruit, is an exact copy of that between Jupiter and Juno in the fourteenth Iliad. Juno there approaches Jupiter with the girdle which she had received from Venus ; upon which he tells her, that she appeared more charming and desirable than she had ever done before, even when their loves were at the highest. The poet afterwards describes them as reposing on a summit of Mount Ida, which produced under them a bed of flowers, the lotos, the
and the hyacinth, and concludes his description with their falling asleep.
Let the reader compare this with the following passage in Milton, which begins with Adam's speech to Eve:
For never did thy beauty since the day
So said he, and forbore not glance or toy
Oppressed themAs no poet seems ever to have studied Homer more, or to have resembled him in the greatness of genius, than Milton, I think I should have given but a very imperfect account of his beauties, if I had not observed the most remarkable passages which look like parallels in these two great authors. I might, in the course of these criticisms, have taken notice of many particular lines and expressions which are translated from the Greek poet; but as I thought this would have appeared too minute and over-curious, I have purposely omitted them. The greater incidents, however, are not only set off by being shown in the same light with several of the same nature in Homer, but by that means may be also guarded against the cavils of the tasteless or ignorant.
No. 357. SATURDAY, APRIL 19.
-Quis talia fando
Temperet à lacrymis ?- VIRG. The tenth book of Paradise Lost has a greater variety of persons in it than any other in the whole poem. The author, upon the winding up of his action, introduces all those wbo had any concern in it, and shows with great beauty the influence which it had upon each of them. It is like the last act of a well-written tragedy, in which all who had a part in it are generally drawn up before the audience, and represented under those circumstances in which the determination of the action places them.
I shall, therefore, consider this book under four heads, in relation to the celestial, the infernal, the human, and the imaginary persons, who have their respective parts allotted in it.
To begin with the celestial persons: the guardian angels of Paradise are described as returning to heaven upon the fall of man, in order to approve their vigilance; their arrival, their manner of reception,
with the sorrow which appeared in themselves, and in those spirits who are said to rejoice at the conversion of a sinner, are very finely laid together in the following lines.
Up into heaven from Paradise in haste
All were who heard, dim sadness did not spare
Amidst, in thunder uttered thus his voice. The same Divine person, who, in the foregoing parts of this poem, interceded for our first parents before their fall, overthrew the rebel angels, and created the world, is now represented as descending to Paradise, and pronouncing sentence upon the three offenders. The cool of the evening being a circumstance with which holy writ introduces this great scene, it is poetically described by our author, who has also kept religiously to the form of words, in which the three several sentences were passed upon Adam, Eve, and the serpent. He has rather chosen to neglect the numerousness of his verse, than to deviate from those speeches which are recorded on this great occasion. The guilt and confusion of our first parents standing naked before their Judge, is touched with great beauty. Upon the arrival of Sin and Death into the works of the creation, the Almighty is again introduced as speaking to his angels that surrounded him.
See with what heat these dogs of hell advance
So fair and good created, &c. The following passage is formed upon that glorious image of holy writ, which compares the voice of an innumerable host of angels, uttering hallelujahs, to the voice of mighty thunderings, or of many waters.
He ended, and the heavenly audience loud
“ Just are thy ways,
Who can extenuate thee?"Though the author, in the whole course of his poem, and particularly in the book we are now examining, has infinite allusions to places of Scripture, I have only taken notice in my remarks of such as are of a poetical nature, and which