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In billows, leave i'th' midst a horrid vale.
conceit of the air's feeling unusual 229. – liquid fire;] Virg. Ecl.
231. Of subterranean wind ]
Dr. Pearce conjectures that it should Then with his waving wings dis
be read fubterranean winds, because played wide,
it is said aid the winds afterwards, Himself up high he lifted from and the conjecture seems probable the ground,
and ingenious : the fuel'd entrails, And with strong flight did forcibly
Orribiv sublim'd with mineral fury, aid and divide
increase the winds which first blew The yielding air, which nigh too up feeble found
232. Pelorus,] A promontory of Her fitting parts, and element Sicily, now Cape di Faro, about a unsound,
mile and half from Italy, whence To bear so great a weight. Virgil angufia a fede Pelori, Æn.
Thyer. III. 687. Bume.
With stench and smoke: Such resting found the fole
Is this the region, this the soil, the clime,
238. Of unbleft feet.] Dr. Bent- it is likewise in VIII. 591. and IX. ley to make the accent smoother 559. See the note on ver. 39. reads Of feet unbleft; but Milton 250. — Hail horrors, bail &c.] could have done the same thing, if His sentiments are every way anhe thought proper : On the con- swerable to his character, and suittrary he chooses almost always to able to a created being of the most put the epithet before the substan- cxalted and most depraved nature. iive (excepting at the end of a Such is that in which he takes pofverse) even tho' the verse be the session of his place of torments. rougher for it. A plain sign that
- Hail horrors, hail &c. he thought it poetical to do so.
Pearce. And afterwards 246. Sovran] So Milton spells it
Here at least after the Italian Sovrano. It is not We shall be free ; &c. easy to account for the formation of our word Sovereign.
Amidst those impieties which this
enraged Spirit utters in other places 247. – farthes from him is beft,] This is express'd from the Greek
of the poem, the author has taken K
care to introduce none that is not proverb coppW AIO TEX secubig with absurdity, and incapable ir, Far from Jupiter but far too
of shocking a religious reader; his from thunder. Bentley.
words, as the poet himself de• 248. Whom reason hath equal'd, ] scribes them, bearing only a feb. Reofon is to be pronounced here as lance of worth, not fubftance. He is one fyllable, or two short ones, as likewise with great art described as
Who now is Sovran can dispose and bid
owning his adversary to be al- Encet encas' OrxNTOCM; mighty. Whatever perverse inter- Encet HE: pretation he puts on the justice, 252.- by place or timë.] Milton mercy and other attributes of the is excellent in placing his words: Supreme Being, he frequently con- invert them only, and say by time fefles his omnipotence, that being or place, and if the reader has any the perfection he was forced to allow him, and the only considera- the alteration is for the worse. For tion which could support his pride the pause falling upon place in the under the Shame of his defeat. first line by time or place, and again Nor must I omit that beautiful cir- upon place in the next line The cumstance of his bursting out into mind is its own place, would of. tears, upon his survey of those in- fend the ear, and therefore is artnumerable Spirits whom he had in- fully varied. volved in the same guilt and ruin with himself. Addison.
A mind not to be chang'd by place
or time. 252. Receive thy new pole for ; ] The mind is its own place. This passage seems to be an improvement upon Sophocles, Aiax 254. The mind is its own place, 395, where Ajax, before he kills
illa These are some of the extravahimself. cries out much in the same gances of the Stoics, and could . manner.
not be better ridiculed than they
are here by being put in the mouth 14 02076, 01200 pce , fucc of Satan in his prelent fituation. N diyoy wg quoi,
Tlyer. 257. --- all
Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Hear’n. 255
· 257. all but] I have heard Xdows emisar', 8X ay arrazaga' it propos'd to read albeit, that is yw' although; but prefer the common Kρεισον γαρ οιμαι τι δε λάτρευreading.
еку атра, 259.-th' Almighty hath not built H Tatel Qurau Ziua TISOY a s
Here for his envy,] This is not a dov. place that God should envy us, or It was a memorable saying of futhink it too good for us; and in lius Cæsar, that he had rather be this sense the word envy is used in the first man in a country-village several places of the poem, and than the second at Rome. The particularly in IV.517. VIII. 494. reader will observe how properly and IX. 770.
the saying is here applied and ac263. Better to reign in Hell, than commodated to the speaker. It is
serve in Heaven.) This is a here made a sentiment worthy of wonderfully fine improvement upon Satan, and of him only; Prometheus's answer to Mercury in Æschylus. Prom. Vinct. 965.
nam te nec fperent Tartara
regem, Tns ons natpoias tiig suny luer Nec tibi regnandi veniat tam dira meg.gray,
cupido. Virg. Georg. I. 36.
And call them not to share with us their part
So Satan spake, and him Beëlzebub
Grotius hath ascribed the same fen- It has been observ'd to me by a timent to Satan in his Adamus Exul, person of very fine taste, that a tragedy which our author seems Shakespear has an expression very to have imitated in some few places, like this in 2 Hen. IV. A& I. and has translated the following You knew, he walk'd o'er perils, lines; but how much better is the
on an edge sense of the two laft verses expressd More likely to fall in, than to get in one by Milton!
o'er : -Nam, me judice, Regnare dignum eft ambitu, etfi and something like it in i Hen. IV. in Tartaro;
A I. Alto præesse Tartaro fiquidem ju. I'll read you matter, deep and danvat,
gerous; Cælis quam in ipfis fervi obire As full of peril and adventrous munia.
spirit, 276. — on the perilous edge As to o'erwalk a current, roaring
Of battel] Perhaps he had in loud, mind Virgil, Æn. IX. 528. On the unfted fast footing of a spear. Et mecum ingentes oras evolvite Hot. If he fall in, good night, belli. Jortin.
or sink or swim,