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U I tegis Amiffam Paradisum, grandia magni

Carmina Miltoni, quid nisi cuncta legis ? Res cunctas, & cunctarum primórdia rerum,

Et fata, & fines continet ifte liber. Intima panduntur magni penetralia mundi;

Scribitur & toto quicquid in orbe latet : Terræque, tractusque maris, cælumque profundum,

Sulphureumque Erebi, flammivomumque fpecus : Quæque colunt terras, pontumque, & Tartara cæca,

Quæque colunt fummi lucida regna poli :
Et quodcunque ullis conclufum eft finibus usquams

Et sine fine Chaos, & fine fine Deus :
Et fine fine magis, fi quid magis est line fine,

In Christo erga homines conciliatus amor.
Hæc qui fperaret quis crederet esse futura ?

Et tamen hæc hodie terra Britanna legit.
O quantos in bella duces ! quæ protulit armał

Quæ canit, & quanta prælia dira tuba!
Colestes acies! atque in certamine cælum!
cæleftes pugna

deceret agros! Quantus in æthereis tollit fe Lucifer armisi

Atque ipfo graditur vix Michaële minor! Quantis, & quam funeftis concurritur iris, Dum ferus hic Atellas protegit, ille rapit ! VOL.I.


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Dum vulsos montes ceu tela reciproca torquent,

Et non mortali desuper igne pluunt :
Stat dubius cui se parti concedat Olympus,

Et,metuit pugnæ non fuperesse fuze.
At fimul in cælis Meisiä insignia fulgent,

Et currus animes, armaque digna Deo,
Horrendumque rotæ ftrident, et säva rotarum

Erumpunt torvis fulgura luminibus,
Et flammæ vibrant, & vera tonitrua rauco

Admistis flammis insonuere polo :
Excidit attonitis mens omnis, & impetus omnis,

Et cassis dextris irrita tela cadunt;
Ad pænas fugiunt, & ceu foret Orcus afylumn,

Infernis certant condere fe tenebris.
Cedite Romani Scriptores, cedite Graii,

fama recens vel celebravit anus. Hæc quicunque leget tantùm cecinisse putabit Mæonidem ranas, Virgilium culices.



HEN I beheld the Poet blind, yet bold,

In fiender book his vast design unfold,
Melliah crown'd, God's reconcil'd decree,
Rebelling Angels, the forbidden tree,
Heaven, Hell, Earth, Chaos, all; the argument
Held me a while misdoubting his intent,
That he would ruin (for I saw him strong)
The sacred truths to fable and old song,
(So Sampfon grop'd the temple's posts in spite)
The world o’erwhelming to revenge his fight.


Yet as I read, still growing less severe,
I lik'd his project, the success did fear ;
Through that wide field how he his way should find,
O'er which lame faith leads understanding blind;
Left he perplex'd the things he would explain,
And what was easy he should render vain.

Or if a work so infinite he spann'd,
Jealous I was that some less skilful hand
(Such as disquiet always what is well,
And by ill imitating would excel)
Might hence presume the whole creation's day
To change in scenes, and show it in a play.

Pardon me, mighty Poet; nor despise
My causeless, yet not impious, surmise.
But I am now convinc'd, and none will dare
Within thy labours to pretend a share.
Thou hast not miss’d one thought that could be fit, ,
And all that was improper doft omit:
So that no room is here for writers left,
But to detect their ignorance or theft.

That majesty which through thy work doth reign,
Draws the devout, deterring the profane.
And things divine thou treat'it of in such state
As them preserves, and thee, inviolate.
At once delight and horror on us seize,
Thou fing'st with so much gravity and ease;
And above human flight dost foar aloft
With plume so strong, so equal, and so soft.
The bird nam'd from that Paradise you sing
So faver fags, but always keeps on wing.


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