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810

And settlings of a melancholy blood:
But this will cure all strait, one sip of this
Will bathe the drooping spirits in delight
Beyond the bliss of dreams. Be wise, and taste.--
The Brothers rush in with swords drawn, wrest his glass out

of his hand, and break it against the ground; his rout make sign of resistance, but are all driven in; The attendant Spirit comes in.

SPIRIT.
What, have you let the false inchanter scape?
Oye mistook, ye should have snatch'd his wand

815

streams

pass 2

811. -One sip of this

814.What, have you let the fulse Will bathe the drooping spirits inchanter scape?] Before this in delight,

verse the stage direction is in Beyond the bliss of dreams.] the Manuscript as follows. The So Fletcher, Faithf. Sheph. act Brothers rush in, strike his glass iv. s. 1. vol. iii. p. 164.

down ; the shapes make as though

they would resist, but are all driven It passeth dreams, Or madmen's fancy, when the many the verse was thus at first,

in. Dæmon enters with them. And Of new imaginations rise and fall. What, have you let the false inchanter Compare the delicious but deadly fountain of Armida in Tasso,

815. O ye mistook, ye should Gier. Lib. c. xiv. 74.

have snatch'd his wand,

And bound him fast; without his Ch’un picciol sorso di sue lucide onde

rod revers'd, Inebria l' alma tosto, e la fai lieta,

And backward mutters of dis&c.

severing power, But Milton seems to have re

We cannot free the Lady, &c.] membered Fairfax's version.

They are directed before to seize One sup therefore the drinker's heart Comus's wand, v. 653. And this doth bring

was from the Faerie Qu. where To sudden joy, whence laughter Sir Guyon breaks the charming vaine doth rise, &c.

staffe of Pleasure's porter, as he See also Parad. L. b. ix. 1046. likewise overthrows his bowl, ii. and 1008. Perhaps Bathe is xii. 49. But from what particular in Spenser's sense, F. Q. i. vii. 4. process of disinchantment, an

cient or modern, did Milton take And bathe in plesaunce of the joyous the notion of reversing Comus's shade.

wand or rod ? It was from a pasSee Upton, Gl. F. Q. in V. sage of Ovid, the great ritualist Bathe. T. Warton.

of classical sorcery, before cited,

And bound him fast; without his rod revers'd,
And backward mutters of dissevering power,
We cannot free the Lady that sits here
In stony fetters fix'd, and motionless :
Yet stay, be not disturb’d; now I bethink me,
Some other means I have which may be us’d,

820

SO

where the companions of Ulys. The circumstance in the text, of ses are restored to their human the Brothers forgetting to seize shapes. Metam. xiv. 300. and reverse the magician's rod, Percutimurque caput conversæ ver

while by contrast it heightens bere virge,

the superior intelligence of the Verbaque dicuntur dictis contraria attendant Spirit, affords the opverbis.

portunity of introducing the ficThis Sandys translates, “ Her tion of raising Sabrina; which, “wand reverst, &c.” Transl. p. exclusive of its poetical orna462. edit. 1632. And in his very ments, is recommended by a lolearned Notes he says, “As cal propriety, and was peculiarly “ Circe's rod, waved over their interesting to the audience, as “heads from the right side to the the Severn is the famous river of “left, presents those false and the neighbourhood. T. Warton. “ sinister persuasions to pleasure, 816. -without his rod re6 which so much deformes them: vers’d,] It was at first the reversion thereof, by dis

without his art revers'd. cipline and a view of their owne deformitie, restores them

$18. -the Lady that sits " to their former beauties," p. here] In the Manuscript it was 481. By backward mutters, the at first that remains, and is that “ verba dictis contraria verbis,”

here sits. we are to understand, that the

821. Some other means I have charming words, or verses, at which &c.] He had written at first used, were to be all repeated

first There is another way that &c. backwards, to destroy what had

821. Doctor Johnson reprobeen done.

bates this long narration, as he The most striking representa- styles it, about Sabrina; which, tion of the reversal of a charm

he
says,

“ is of no use because it that I remember, and Milton " is false, and therefore unmight here have partly had it in

“ suitable to a good being." By his eye, is in Spenser's descrip- the poetical reader, this fiction is

, tion of the deliverance of Amoret, considered as true. In common by Britomart, from the inchant- sense, the relator is not true : ment of Busyrane, Faery Q. iii. and why may not an imaginary xii. 36.

being, even of a good character,

deliver an imaginary tale? In And rising up, gan streight to overlooke

poetry false narrations are often Those cursed leaves, his charmes

more useful than true. Someback to reverse ; &c.

thing, and something preter-,

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Which once of Melibæus old I learnt,
The soothest shepherd that e'er pip'd on plains.

There is a gentle nymph not far from hence,
That with moist curb sways the smooth Severn stream,
Sabrina is her name, a virgin pure;

natural, and consequently false, the river Sture; wherein Lobut therefore more poetical, was

crine shot with an arrow ends necessary for the present distress. his life. But not so ends the T. Warton.

fury of Guendolen, for Estrildis 823. The soothest] The truest, and her daughter Sabra she faithfullest. Sooth is truth. In throws into a river; and to leave sooth is indeed. Soothsayer one

a monument of revenge, prothat foretells the truth, divinus, claims that the stream be thenceveridicus. And therefore what forth called after the damsel's. this soothest shepherd teaches name, which by length of time may be depended upon.

is changed now to Sabrina or 823. Spenser thus character- Severn. This is the account izes Amyntas in Colin Clout's given by Milton himself in the come home again.

first book of his History of EngHe, whilst he lived, was the noblest land: but here he takes a liberty swaine,

very allowable to poets, (as Mr. That ever piped on an oaten quill. Thyer expresses it,) and varies

Bowle. the original story of this event, 826. Sabrina is her name, a

in order to heighten the character virgin pure ;] In the Manuscript introduce as the patroness and

of Sabrina, whom he is about to it was at first a virgin goddess, then a virgin chaste, and at last protector of chastity. See Spen

ser's account of the same event, a virgin pure. Locrine, king of

in the Faery Queen, b. ii. cant. the Britons, married Guendolen the daughter of Corineus, Duke 10. st. 17, 18, 19. of Cornwall : but in secret, for

But the sad virgin innocent of all,

Adown the rolling river she did pour, fear of Corineus, he loved Estril

Which of her name now Severn men dis, a fair captive whom he had do call : taken in a battle with Humber Such was the end that to disloyal love king of the Huns, and had by

did fall. her a daughter equally fair, 826. Sabrina's fabulous history NO whose name was Sabra. But

may be seen in the Mirrour of when once his fear was off by the Magistrates under the legend of death of Corineus, not content the Lady Sabrine, in the sixth with secret enjoyment, divorcing Song of Drayton's Polyolbion, Guendolen, he makes Estrildis the tenth canto and second book now his queen. Guendolen all of Spenser's Faerie Queene, the in rage departs into Cornwall— third book of Albion's England, and gathering an army of her the first book of our author's father's friends and subjects, History of England, in Hargives battle to her husband by dyng's Chronicle, and in an old

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830

Whilome she was the daughter of Locrine,
That had the sceptre from his father Brute.
She guiltless damsel flying the mad pursuit
Of her enraged stepdame Guendolen,
Commended her fair innocence to the flood,
That stay'd her flight with his cross-flowing course.
The water nymphs that in the bottom play'd,
Held up their pearled wrists and took her in,

:

English Ballad on the subject. the tip of the lady's finger and See note on Epitaph. Dam. v. 176. thrice her ruby lip, with chaste

The part of the fable of Co- palms moist and cold; as also the mus, which may be called the envenomed chair, smeared with Disinchantment, is evidently tenacious gums. The charm is founded on Fletcher's Faithful dissolved: and the nymph deShepherdess. The moral of both parts to the bower of Amphitrite. dramas is the triumph of chas- But I am anticipating, by a getity. This in both is finally neral exhibition, such particular brought about by the same sort passages of Fletcher's play as of machinery. Sabrina, a virgin will hereafter be cited in their and a king's daughter, was con- proper places; and which, like verted into a river-nymph, that others already cited, will appear her honour might be preserved to have been enriched by our inviolate. Still she

preserves

author with a variety of new alher maiden-gentleness ; and every lusions, original fictions, and the evening visits the cattle among beauties of unborrowed poetry. her twilight meadows, to heal T. Warton. the mischiefs inflicted by elfish 829. She guiltless damsel We magic. For this she was praised prefer the reading of the Manu- . by the shepherds.

script and the editions of 1637 She can unlock

and 1645: that of 1673 has The The clasping charm, and thaw the guiltless damsel &c. which is folnumbing spell,

lowed by some others. If she be right invok'd in warbled

831. to the flood,] So he song.

wrote at first, and then to the She protects virgins in distress. stream, and then to the flood She is now solemnly called, to again; and rightly, as stream is deliver a virgin imprisoned in the last word of a verse a little the spell of a detestable sorcerer. before and a little after. She rises at the invocation, and 834. Held

up their pearled leaving her car on an osiered wrists &c.] In the Manuscript rushy bank, hastens to help in- these verses were thus at first, snared chastity. She sprinkles on the breast of the captive maid,

Held up their white wrists to receive

her in, precious drops selected from her

And bore her straight to aged Nereus' pure fountain. She touches thrice hall.

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Bearing her strait to aged Nereus' hall,
Who piteous of her woes, rear'd her lank head,
And gave her to his daughters to imbathe
In nectar'd lavers strow'd with asphodil,
And through the porch and inlet of each sense
Dropt in ambrosial oils till she reviv'd,
And underwent a quick immortal change,
Made Goddess of the river ; still she retains
Her maiden gentleness, and oft at eve
Visits the herds along the twilight meadows,

840

p. 752.

ΕΛΑΙΩι

ΑΜΒΡΟΣΙΩι.

834. Drayton gives the Severn The process which follows, of pearls. He says of Sabrina, Po- dropping ambrosial oils“ into lyolb. s. v. vol. ii.

“the porch and inlet of each -Where she meant to go

sense of the drowned Sabrina, The path was strew'd with pearl. is originally from Homer, where He speaks also of “The pearly Patroclus with rosy ambrosial

Venus anoints the dead body of “ Conway's head," a neighbour- oil. 11. b. xxiii. 186. ing river. Ibid. s. ix. vol. iii. p. 827. And of the “ precious ori

“Ροδοενσι δε

Xgrey ent pearl that breedeth in her “ sand.” Ibid. s. x. vol. iii. p.

See also Bion's Hyacinth. “ Kgssy 842. We shall see, that Milton

«δ' αμβροσιη και νεκταρι, &c.” afterwards gives gems to the Idyll

, ix. 3. Severn of a far brighter hue.

The word imbathe occurs in T. Warton.

our author's Reformation, “ Me836. - piteous of her woes.]

“ thinkes a sovereign and revivUnder the same form, “ Retch- ing joy must needs rush into « lesse of their wrongs," that is,

o the bosom of him that reads unpiteous, as in Drayton, Polyolb.

or hears; and the sweet odour s. vii. See supr. at v. 404. T.

of the returning Gospel imWarton.

" bathe his soul with the fra

Prose837. And gave her to his daugh

grance of heaven.” ters to imbathe

works, vol. i. 2. What was enIn nectar'd lavers]

thusiasm in most of the puritanThis at least reminds us of Al- ical writers, was poetry in Milton. cæus's epigram or epitaph on T. Warton. Homer, who died in the island

839. And through the porch v of Io. The Nereids of the cir- and inlet of each sense] "The cumambient sea bathed his dead

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same metaphor in Shakespeare, body with nectar. Antholog. lib. Hamlet, act i. sc. 8. iii. p. 386. edit. Brod. Francof. And in the porches of mine ears did 1600. fol. ΝΕΚΤΑΡΙ δ' ειναλιαι Νηρηίδες έχρισαντο,

844. Visits the herds along the Και νέκυν Ακταιη θηκαν υπο σπιλαδι.

twilight meadou's,

pour &c.

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