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As I suppose, towards your once glory'd friend,
Chor. As signal now in low dejected state,
Man. miserable change! is this the man, 340
Sum. Appoint not heav'nly disposition, Father; Nothing of all these evils hath befall n me
359. Luke x1. 12.
myself have brought then on, 375 Sole author I, sole cause : if aught seem vile, As vile hath heen my folly, who have profaned The mystery of God giv'n me under pledge Of vow, and have betray'd it to a woman, A Canaanite, my faithless enemy.
380 This we'i I knew, nor was at all surprised, But warn'd by oft experience : did not she Of Timna first betray me, and reveal The secret wrested from me in her highth Of nuptial love profess'd, carrying it straight 385 To them who had corrupted her, my spies, And rivals? In this other was there found More faith, who also in her prime of love, Spousal embraces, vitiated with gold, Though offer'd only, by the scent conceived
390 Her spurious first-born, treason against me? Thrice she assay'd with flattering pray’rs and sighs, And amorous reproaches, to win from me My capital secret, in what part my strength [know; Lay stored, in what part summ'd, that she might Thrice I deluded her, and turn'd to sport
True slavery, and that blindness worse than this, That saw not how degenerately I served. 419
Man. I cannot praise thy marriage choices, Son, Rather approved them not; but thou plead Divine impulsion prompting how thou might'st Find some occasion to infest our foes. I state not that; this I am sure, our foes Found soon occasion thereby to make thee 425 Their captive, and their triumph; thou the sooner Temptation found'st, or over-potent charms To violate the sacred trust of silence Deposited within thee; which to have kept Tacit was in thy power : true; and thou bear'st 430 Enough, and more, the burden of that fault; Bitterly hast thou paid, and still art paying That rizid score. A worse thing yet remains : This day the Philistines a popular feast Here celebrate in Gaza ; and proclaim
434 Great pomp and sacrifice, and praises loud To Dagon, as their god who hath deliver'd Thee, Samson, bound and blind into their hands, Them out of thine, who slew'st them many a slain. So Dagon shall be magnified, and God,
440 Besides whoin is no god, compared with idols Disglorified, blasphened, and had in scorn By the idolatrous rout ainidst their wine; Which to have come to pass by means of thee, Samson, of all thy sufferings think the heaviest, 443 Of all reproach the most with shame that ever Could have befallen thee and thy father's house.
Sam. Fathe:, I do acknowledge and confess That I this honour, I this pomp, have brought To Dagon, and advanced his praises high
-150 Among the Heathen 'round; to God have brought Dishonour, obloquy, and oped the mouths Of idolists, and atheists; have brought scandal To Israel, diffidence of God, and doubt In feeble hearts, propense enough before
455 To waver, or fall off and join with idols; Which is my chief affliction, shame and sorrow, The anguish of my soul, that suffers not Mine eye to harbour sleep, or thoughts to rest. This only hope relieves me, that the strife ACN
With me bath end, all tlie contést is now
470 And with confusion blank his worshippers.
Mun. With cause this hope relieves thee, and these I as a prophecy receive; for God,
(words, Nothing more certain, will not long defer To vindicate the glory of his name
475 Against all competition, nor will long Endure it doubtful whether God be Lord, Or Dagon. But for thee what shall be done? Thou must not in the meanwhile here forgot Lie in this miserable loathsome plight
480 Neglected. I already have made way To some Philistian lords, with whom to treat About thy ransum : well they may by this Have satisfied their utmost of revenge By pains and slaveries, worse than death inflicted On thee, who now no more can't do them harm. 186
Sum. Spare that proposal, Father, spare the trouble Of that solicitation ; let me here, As I deserve, pay on my punishment; And expiate, if possible, my crime,
490 Shameful garrulity. To have reveal'd Secrets of men, the secrets of a friend, How heinous had the fact beeu, how deserving Contenipt, and scorn of all, to be excluded All friendship, and avoided as a blab,
495 The mark of fool set on his front? But I God's counsel have not kept, his holy secret Presumptuously have publish'd impiously, Weakly at least, and shamefully: a sin That Gentiles in their parables condemn
500. The a'lusion is to the story of Tantalus, who it is said revealed the secrrts of the gods, and was for that condemned to punishment in the infernal regions.
To their abyss and horrid pains confined.
Man. Be penitent and for thy fault contrite,
Sam. His pardon I implore ; but as for life, To what end should I seek it? when in strength All mortals I excell'd, and great in hopes With youthful courage and magnanimous thoughts Of birth from Heav'n foretold and high exploits, 525 Full of divine instinct, after some proof Or acts indeed heroic, far beyond The sons of Anak, famous now and blazed, Fearless of danger, like a petty god, I walk'd about admired of all, and dreaded 530 On hostile ground, none daring my affront. Then swollen with pride into the snare I fell Of fair fallacious looks, venereal trains, Soften'd with pleasure and voluptuous life ; At length to lay my head and hallow'd pledge 535 Of all my strength in the lascivious lap Of a deceitful concubine, who shore me Like a tame wether, all my precious fleece, Then turn'd me out ridiculous, despoil'd, Shaven and disarm'd among mine enemies.
540 Chor. Desire of wine and all delicious drinks,
538. OS is to be understood before all, &c. 541. Allusion is here made to the strictness of living imposed