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He brought thee into this delicious grove,
This garden planted with the trees of God,
Delectable both to behold and taste;
And freely all their pleasant fruit for food
Gave thee: all sorts are here that all the earth

yields,
Variety without end; but of the tree,
Which, tasted, works knowledge of good and evil,
Thou may’st not; in the day thou eat’st, thou diest :
Death is the penalty imposed: beware,
And govern well thy appetite; lest Sin
Surprise thee, and her black attendant, Death.

“Here finish'd he, and all that he had made View'd, and behold all was entirely good; So even and morn accomplish'd the sixth day: Yet not till the Creator, from his work Desisting, though unwearied, up return’d, Up to the heaven of heavens, his high abode, Thence to behold this new-created world, The addition of his empire, how it show'd In prospect from his throne, how good, how fair, Answering his great idea. Up he rode, Follow'd with acclamation, and the sound Symphonious of ten thousand harps, that tuned Angelic harmonies: the earth, the air Resounded (thou remember'st, for thou heardst,) The heavens and all the constellations rung, The planets in their station listening stood, While the bright pomp ascended jubilant. Open, ye everlasting gates!' they sung; Open, ye heavens! your living doors; let in

The great Creator, from his work return'd
Magnificent, his six days' work, a world :
Open, and henceforth oft; for God will deign
To visit oft the dwellings of just men,
Delighted; and with frequent intercourse
Thither will send his winged messengers
On errands of supernal grace.' So sung
The glorious train ascending: he, through heaven,
That open’d wide her blazing portals, led
To God's eternal house direct the way;
A broad and ample road, whose dust is gold,
And pavement stars, as stars to thee appear,
Seen in the galaxy, that milky way
Which nightly, as a circling zone, thou seest
Powder'd with stars. And now on earth the

seventh
Evening arose in Eden, for the sun
Was set, and twilight from the east came on,
Forerunning night; when at the holy mount
Of heaven's high-seated top, the imperial throne
Of Godhead fix'd for ever firm and sure,
The Filial Power arrived, and sat him down
With his great Father: for he also went
Invisible, yet stay'd (such privilege
Hath Omnipresence,) and the work ordain’d,
Author and end of all things: and, from work
Now resting, bless'd and hallow'd the seventh day,
As resting on that day from all his works;
But not in silence holy kept: the harp
Had work, and rested not; the solemn pipe,
And dulcimer, all organs of sweet stop,

All sounds on fret by string or golden wire,
Temper'd soft tunings, intermix'd with voice
Choral or unison: of incense clouds,
Fuming from golden censers, hid the mount.
Creation and the six days' acts they sung:
Great are thy works, Jehovah! infinite
Thy power! what thought can measure thee, or

tongue
Relate thee? Greater now in thy return
Than from the giant angels: thee that day
Thy thunders magnified; but to create
Is greater than, created, to destroy.
Who can impair thee, Mighty King, or bound
Thy empire ? Easily the proud attempt
Of spirits apostate, and their counsels vain,
Thou hast repell’d; while impiously they thought
Thee to diminish, and from thee withdraw
The number of thy worshippers. Who seeks
To lessen thee, against his purpose serves
To manifest the more thy might: his evil
Thou usest, and from thence createst more good.
Witness this new-made world, another heaven,
From heaven-gate not far, founded, in view,
On the clear hyaline, the glassy sea;
Of amplitude almost immense, with stars
Numerous, and every star, perhaps, a world
Of destined habitation; but thou know'st
Their seasons : among these the seat of men,
Earth with her nether ocean circumfused,
Their pleasant dwelling-place. Thrice happy men
And sons of men, whom God hath thus advanced !

Created in his image there to dwell
And worship him; and in reward to rule
Over his works, on earth, in sea, or air,
And multiply a race of worshippers
Holy and just: thrice happy, if they know
Their happiness, and persevere upright!'

“So sung they, and the empyrëan rung
With hallelujahs: thus was sabbath kept.
And thy request think now fulfill'd, that ask'd
How first this world and face of things began,
And what before thy memory was done
From the beginning : that posterity,
Inform’d by thee, might know: if else thou seek’st
Aught not surpassing human measure, say.”

PARADISE LOST.

BOOK VIII

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