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John Milton. (1608–1674). Complete Poems.
The Harvard Classics. 1909–14.


Paradise Lost: The Eighth Book

THE ARGUMENT.—Adam inquires concerning celestial motions; is doubtfully answered, and exhorted to search rather things more worthy of knowledge. Adam assents, and, still desirous to detain Raphael, relates to him what he remembered since his own creation—his placing in Paradise; his talk with God concerning solitude and fit society; his first meeting and nuptials with Eve. His discourse with the Angel thereupon; who, after admonitions repeated, departs.

THE ANGEL ended, and in Adam’s ear

So charming left his voice that he a while

Thought him still speaking, still stood fixed to hear;

Then, as new-waked, thus gratefully replied:—

“What thanks sufficient, or what recompense

Equal, have I to render thee, divine

Historian, who thus largely hast allayed

The thirst I had of knowledge, and voutsafed

This friendly condescension to relate

Things else by me unsearchable—now heard

With wonder, but delight, and, as is due,

With glory attributed to the high

Creator? Something yet of doubt remains,

Which only thy solution can resolve.

When I behold this goodly frame, this World,

Of Heaven and Earth consisting, and compute

Their magnitudes—this Earth, a spot, a grain,

An atom, with the Firmament compared

And all her numbered stars, that seem to rowl

Spaces incomprehensible (for such

Their distance argues, and their swift return

Diurnal) merely to officiate light

Round this opacous Earth, this punctual spot,

One day and night, in all their vast survey

Useless besides—reasoning, I oft admire

How Nature, wise and frugal, could commit

Such disproportions, with superfluous hand

So many nobler bodies to create,

Greater so manifold, to this one use,

For aught appears, and on their Orbs impose

Such restless revolution day by day

Repeated, while the sedentary Earth,

That better might with far less compass move,

Served by more noble than herself, attains

Her end without least motion, and receives,

As tribute, such a sumless journey brought

Of incorporeal speed her warmth and light:

Speed, to describe whose swiftness number fails.”

So spake our Sire, and by his countenance seemed

Entering on studious thoughts abstruse; which Eve

Perceiving, where, she sat retired in sight,

With lowliness majestic from her seat,

And grace that won who saw to wish her stay,

Rose, and went forth among her fruits and flowers,

To visit how they prospered, bud and bloom,

Her nursery; they at her coming sprung,

And, touched by her fair tendance, gladlier grew.

Yet went she not as not with such discourse

Delighted, or not capable her ear

Of what was high. Such pleasure she reserved,

Adam relating, she sole auditress;

Her husband the relater she preferred

Before the Angel, and of him to ask

Chose rather; he, she knew, would intermix

Grateful digressions, and solve high dispute

With conjugal caresses: from his lip

Not words alone pleased her. Oh, when meet now

Such pairs, in love and mutual honour joined?

With goddess-like demeanour forth she went,

Not unattended; for on her as Queen

A pomp of winning Graces waited still,

And from about her shot darts of desire

Into all eyes, to wish her still in sight.

And Raphael now to Adam’s doubt proposed

Benevolent and facile thus replied:—

“To ask or search I blame thee not; for Heaven

Is as the Book of God before thee set,

Wherein to read his wondrous works, and learn

His seasons, hours, or days, or months, or years.

This to attain, whether Heaven move or Earth

Imports not, if thou reckon right; the rest

From Man or Angel the great Architect

Did wisely to conceal, and not divulge

His secrets, to be scanned by them who ought

Rather admire. Or, if they list to try

Conjecture, he his fabric of the Heavens

Hath left to their disputes—perhaps to move

His laughter at their quaint opinions wide

Hereafter, when they come to model Heaven,

And calculate the stars; how they will wield

The mighty frame; how build, unbuild, contrive

To save appearances; how gird the Sphere

With Centric and Eccentric scribbled o’er,

Cycle and Epicycle, orb in orb.

Already by thy reasoning this I guess,

Who art to lead thy offspring, and supposest

That bodies bright and greater should not serve

The less not bright, nor Heaven such journeys run,

Earth sitting still, when she alone receives

The benefit. Consider, first, that great

Or bright infers not excellence. The Earth,

Though, in comparison of Heaven, so small,

Nor glistering, may of solid good contain

More plenty than the Sun that barren shines,

Whose virtue on itself works no effect,

But in the fruitful Earth; there first received,

His beams, unactive else, their vigour find.

Yet not to Earth are those bright luminaries

Officious, but to thee, Earth’s habitant.

And, for the Heaven’s wide circuit, let it speak

The Maker’s high magnificence, who built

So spacious, and his line stretched out so far,

That Man may know he dwells not in his own—

An edifice too large for him to fill,

Lodged in a small partition, and the rest

Ordained for uses to his Lord best known.

The swiftness of those Circles at’tribute,

Though numberless, to his Omnipotence,

That to corporeal substances could add

Speed almost spiritual. Me thou think’st not slow,

Who since the morning-hour set out from Heaven

Where God resides, and ere mid-day arrived

In Eden—distance inexpressible

By numbers that have name. But this I urge,

Admitting motion in the Heavens, to shew

Invalid that which thee to doubt it moved;

Not that I so affirm, though so it seem

To thee who hast thy dwelling here on Earth.

God, to remove his ways from human sense,

Placed Heaven from Earth so far, that earthly sight,

If it presume, might err in things too high,

And no advantage gain. What if the Sun

Be centre to the World, and other Stars,

By his attractive virtue and their own

Incited, dance about him various rounds?

Their wandering course, now high, now low, then hid,

Progressive, retrograde, or standing still,

In six thou seest; and what if, seventh to these

The planet Earth, so steadfast though she seem,

Insensibly three different motions move?

Which else to several spheres thou must ascribe,

Moved contrary with thwart obliquities,

Or save the Sun his labour, and that swift

Nocturnal and diurnal rhomb supposed,

Invisible else above all stars, the wheel

Of Day and Night; which needs not they belief,

If Earth, industrious of herself, fetch Day,

Travelling east, and with her part averse

From the Sun’s beam meet Night, her other part

Still luminous by his ray. What if that light,

Sent from her through the wide transpicuous air,

To the terrestrial Moon to be as a star,

Enlightening her by day, as she by night

This Earth—reciprocal, if land be there,

Fields and inhabitants? Her spots thou seest

As clouds, and clouds may rain, and rain produce

Fruits in her softened soil, for some to eat

Allotted there; and other Suns, perhaps,

With their attendant Moons, thou wilt descry,

Communicating male and female light—

Which to great sexes animate the World,

Stored in each Orb perhaps with some that live.

For such vast room in Nature unpossessed

By living soul, desert and desolate,

Only to shine, yet scarce to con’tribute

Each Orb a glimpse of light, conveyed so far

Down to this habitable, which returns

Light back to them, is obvious to dispute.

But whether thus these things, or whether not—

Whether the Sun, predominant in heaven,

Rise on the Earth, or Earth rise on the Sun;

He from the east his flaming road begin,

Or she from west her silent course advance

With inoffensive pace that spinning sleeps

On her soft axle, while she paces even,

And bears thee soft with the smooth air along—

Solicit not thy thoughts with matters hid:

Leave them to God above; him serve and fear.

Of other creatures as him pleases best,

Wherever placed, let him dispose; joy thou

In what he gives to thee, this Paradise

And thy fair Eve; Heaven is for thee too high

To know what passes there. Be lowly wise;

Think only what concerns thee and thy being;

Dream not to other worlds, what creatures there

Live, in what state, condition, or degreed-

Contented that thus far hath been revealed

Not of Earth only, but of highest Heaven.”

To whom thus Adam, cleared of doubt, replied:—

“How fully hast thou satisfied me, pure

Intelligence of Heaven, Angel serene,

And, freed from intricacies, taught to live

The easiest way, nor with perplexing thoughts

To interrupt the sweet of life, from which

God hath bid dwell far off all anxious cares,

And not molest us, unless we ourselves

Seek them with wandering thoughts, and notions vain!

But apt the mind or fancy is to rove

Unchecked; and of her roving is no end,

Till, warned, or by experience taught, she learn

That not to know at large of things remote

From use, obscure and subtle, but to know

That which before us lies in daily life,

Is the prime wisdom: what is more is fume,

Or emptiness, or fond impertinence,

And renders us in things that most concern

Unpractised, unprepared, and still to seek.

Therefore from this high pitch let us descend

A lower flight, and speak of things at hand

Useful; whence, haply, mention may arise

Of something not unreasonable to ask,

By sufferance, and thy wonted favour, deigned.

Thee I have heard relating what was done

Ere my remembrance; now hear me relate

My story, which perhaps, thou hast not heard.

And day is yet not spent; till then thou seest

How subtly to detain thee I devise,

Inviting thee to hear while I relate—

Fond, were it not in hope of thy reply.

For, while I sit with thee, I seem in Heaven;

And sweeter thy discourse is to my ear

Than fruits of palm-tree, pleasantest to thirst

And hunger both, from labour, at the hour

Of sweet repast. They satiate, and soon fill,

Though pleasant; but thy words, with grace divine

Imbued, bring to their sweetness no satiety.”

To whom thus Raphael answered, heavenly meek:—

“Nor are thy lips ungrateful, Sire of Men,

Nor tongue ineloquent; for God on thee

Abundantly his gifts hath also poured,

Inward and outward both, his image fair:

Speaking, or mute, all comeliness and grace

Attends thee, and each word, each motion, forms.

Nor less think we in Heaven of thee on Earth

Than of our fellow-servant, and inquire

Gladly into the ways of God with Man;

For God, we see, hath honoured thee, and set

On Man his equal love. Say therefore on;

For I that day was absent, as befell,

Bound on a voyage uncouth and obscure,

Far on excursion toward the gates of Hell,

Squared in full legion (such command we had),

To see that none thence issued forth a spy

Or enemy, while God was in his work,

Lest he, incensed at such eruption bold,

Destruction with Creation might have mixed.

Not that they durst without his leave attempt;

But us he sends upon his high behests

For state, as sovran King, and to inure

Our prompt obedience. Fast we found, fast shut,

The dismal gates, and barricaded strong,

But, long ere our approaching, heard within

Noise, other than the sound of dance or song—

Torment, and loud lament, and furious rage.

Glad we returned up to the coasts of Light

Ere Sabbath-evening; so we had in charge.

But thy relation now: for I attend,

Pleased with thy words no less than thou with mine.”

So spake the godlike Power, and thus our Sire:—

“For Man to tell how human life began

Is hard; for who himself beginning knew?

Desire with thee still longer to converse

Induced me. As new-waked from soundest sleep,

Soft on the flowery herb I found me laid,

In balmy sweat, which with his beams the Sun

Soon dried, and on the reeking moisture fed.

Straight toward Heaven my wondering eyes I turned,

And gazed a while the ample sky, till, raised

By quick instinctive motion, up I sprung,

As thitherward endeavoring, and upright

Stood on my feet. About me round I saw

Hill, dale, and shady woods, and sunny plains,

And liquid lapse of murmuring streams; by these,

Creatures that lived and moved, and walked or flew,

Birds on the branches warbling: all things smiled;

With fragrance and with joy my heart o’erflowed.

Myself I then perused, and limb by limb

Surveyed, and sometimes went, and sometimes ran

With supple joints, as lively vigour led;

But who I was, or where, or from what cause,

Knew not. To speak I tried, and forthwith spake;

My tongue obeyed, and readily could name

Whate’er I saw. ‘Thou Sun,’ said I, ‘fair light,

And thou enlightened Earth, so fresh and gay,

Ye hills and dales, ye rivers, woods, and plains,

And ye that live and move, fair creatures, tell,

Tell, if ye saw, how came I thus, how here!

Not of myself; by some great Maker then,

tin goodness and in power præ-eminent.

Tell me, how may I know him, how adore,

From whom I have that thus I move and live,

And feel that I am happier than I know!’

While thus I called, and strayed I knew not whither,

From where I first drew air, and first beheld

This happy light, when answer none returned,

On a green shady bank, profuse of flowers,

Pensive I sat me down. There gentle sleep

First found me, and with soft oppression seized

My drowsèd sense, untroubled, though I thought

I then was passing to my former state

Insensible, and forthwith to dissolve:

When suddenly stood at my head a Dream,

Whose inward apparition gently moved

My fancy to believe I yet had being,

And lived. One came, methought, of shape divine,

And said, ‘Thy mansion wants thee, Adam; rise,

First Man, of men innumerable ordained

First father! called by thee, I come thy guide

To the Garden of bliss, thy seat prepared.’

So saying, by the hand he took me, raised,

And over fields and waters, as in air

Smooth sliding without step, last led me up

A woody mountain, whose high top was plain,

A circuit wide, enclosed, with goodliest trees

Planted, with walks and bowers, that what I saw

Of Earth before scarce pleasant seemed. Each tree

Loaden with fairest fruit, that hung to the eye

Tempting, stirred in me sudden appetite

To pluck and eat; whereat I waked, and found

Before mine eyes all real, as the dream

Had lively shadowed. Here had new begun

My wandering, had not He who was my guide

Up hither from among the trees appeared,

Presence Divine. Rejoicing, but with awe,

In adoration at his feet I fell

Submiss. He reared me, and, ‘Whom thou sought’st I am,’

Said mildly, ‘Author of all this thou seest

Above, or round about thee, or beneath.

This Paradise I give thee; count it thine

To till and keep, and of the fruit to eat.

Of every tree that in the Garden grows

Eat freely with glad heart; fear here no dearth.

But of the tree whose operation brings

Knowledge of Good and Ill, which I have set,

The pledge of thy obedience and thy faith,

Amid the garden by the Tree of Life—

Remember what I warn thee—shun to taste,

And shun the bitter consequence: for know,

The day thou eat’st thereof, my sole command

Transgressed, inevitably thou shalt die,

From that day mortal, and this happy state

Shalt lose, expelled from hence into a world

Of woe and sorrow.’ Sternly he pronounced

The rigid interdiction, which resounds

Yet dreadful in mine ear, though in my choice

Not to incur; but soon his clear aspect’

Returned, and gracious purpose thus renewed:—

‘Not only these fair bounds, but all the Earth

To thee and to thy race I give; as lords

Possess it, and all things that therein live,

Or live in sea or air, beast, fish, and fowl.

In sign whereof, each bird and beast behold

After their kinds; I bring them to receive

From thee their names, and pay thee fealty

With low subjection. Understand the same

Of fish within their watery residence,

Not hither summoned, since they cannot change

Their element to draw the thinner air.’

As thus he spake, each bird and beast behold

Approaching two and two—these cowering low

With blandishment; each bird stooped on his wing.

I named them as they passed, and understood

Their nature; with such knowledge God endued

My sudden apprehension. But in these

I found not what methought I wanted still,

And to the Heavenly Vision thus presumed:—

“‘O, by what name—or Thou above all these,

Above mankind, or aught than mankind higher,

Surpassest far my naming—how may I

Adore thee, Author of this Universe,

And all this good to Man, for whose well-being

So amply, and with hands so liberal,

Thou hast provided all things? But with me

I see not who partakes. In solitude

What happiness? who can enjoy alone,

Or, all enjoying, what contentment find?’

Thus I, presumptuous; and the Vision bright,

As with a smile more brightened, thus replied:—

“‘What call’st thou solitude? Is not the Earth

With various living creatures, and the Air,

Replenished, and all these at thy command

To come and play before thee? Know’st thou not

Their language and their ways? They also know,

And reason not contemptibly; with these

Find pastime, and bear rule; thy realm is large.’

So spake the Universal Lord and seemed

So ordering. I, with leave of speech implored,

And humble deprecation, thus replied:—

“‘Let not my words offend thee, Heavenly Power;

My Maker, be propitious while I speak.

Hast thou not made me here thy substitute,

And these inferior far beneath me set?

Among unequals what society

Can sort, what harmony or true delight?

Which must be mutual, in proportion due

Given and received; but, in disparity,

The one intense, the other still remiss,

Cannot well suit with either, but soon prove

Tedious alike. Of fellowship I speak

Such as I seek, fit to participate

All rational delight, wherein the brute

Cannot be human consort. They rejoice

Each with their kind, lion with lioness;

So fitly them in pairs thou hast combined:

Much less can bird with beast, or fish with fowl,

So well converse, nor with the ox the ape;

Worse, then, can man with beast, and least of all.’

“Whereto the Almighty answered, not displeased:—

‘A nice and subtle happiness, I see,

Thou to thyself proposest, in the choice

Of thy associates, Adam, and wilt taste

No pleasure, though in pleasure, solitary.

What think’st thou, then, of Me, and this my state?

Seem I to thee sufficiently possessed

Of happiness, or not, who am alone

From all eternity? for none I know

Second to me or like, equal much less.

How have I, then, with whom to hold converse,

Save with the creatures which I made, and those

To me inferior infinite descents

Beneath what other creatures are to thee?’

“He ceased. I lowly answered:—’To attain

The highth and depth of thy eternal ways

All human thoughts come short, Supreme of Things!

Thou in thyself art perfet, and in Thee

Is no deficience found. Not so is Man,

But in degree—the cause of his desire

By conversation with his like to help

Or solace his defects. No need that thou

Should’st propagate, already infinite,

And through all numbers absolute, though One;

But Man by number is to manifest

His single imperfection, and beget

Like of his like, his image multiplied,

In unity defective; which requires

Collateral love, and dearest amity.

Thou, in thy secrecy although alone,

Best with thyself accompanied, seek’st not

Social communication—yet, so pleased,

Canst raise thy creature to what highth thou wilt

Of union or communion, deified;

I, by conversing, cannot these erect

From prone, nor in their ways complacence find.

Thus I emboldened spake, and freedom used

Permissive, and acceptance found; which gained

This answer from the gratious Voice Divine:—

“‘Thus far to try thee, Adam, I was pleased,

And find thee knowing not of beasts alone,

Which thou hast rightly named, but of thyself—

Expressing well the spirit within thee free,

My image, not imparted to the brute;

Whose fellowship, therefore, unmeet for thee,

Good Reason was thou freely shouldst dislike.

And be so minded still. I, ere thou spak’st,

Knew it not good for Man to be alone,

And no such company as then thou saw’st

Intended thee—for trial only brought,

To see how thou couldst judge of fit and meet.

What next I bring shall please thee, be assured,

Thy likeness, thy fit help, thy other self,

Thy wish exactly to thy heart’s desire.’

“He ended, or I heard no more; for now

My earthly, by his heavenly overpowered,

Which it had long stood under, strained to the highth

In that celestial colloquy sublime,

As with an object that excels the sense,

Dazzled and spent, sunk down, and sought repair

Of sleep, which instantly fell on me, called

By Nature as in aid, and closed mine eyes.

Mine eyes he closed, but open left the cell

Of fancy, my internal sight; by which,

Abstract as in a trance, methought I saw,

Though sleeping, where I lay, and saw the Shape

Still glorious before whom awake I stood;

Who, stooping, opened my left side, and took

From thence a rib, with cordial spirits warm,

And life-blood streaming fresh; wide was the wound,

But suddenly with flesh filled up and healed.

The rib he formed and fashioned with his hands;

Under his forming hands a creature grew,

Man-like, but different sex, so lovely fair

That what seemed fair in all the world seemed now

Mean, or in her summed up, in her contained

And in her looks, which from that time infused

Sweetness into my heart unfelt before,

And into all things from her air inspired

The spirit of love and amorous delight.

She disappeared, and left me dark; I waked

To find her, or for ever to deplore

Her loss, and other pleasures all adjure:

When, out of hope, behold her not far off,

Such as I saw her in my dream, adorned

With what all Earth or Heaven could bestow

To make her amiable. On she came,

Led by her Heavenly Maker, though unseen

And guided by his voice, nor uninformed

Of nuptial sanctity and marriage rites.

Grace was in all her steps, heaven in her eye,

In every gesture dignity and love.

I, overjoyed, could not forbear aloud:—

“‘This turn hath made amends; thou hast fulfilled

Thy words, Creator bounteous and benign,

Giver of all things fair—but fairest this

Of all thy gifts!—nor enviest. I now see

Bone of my bone, flesh of my flesh, my Self

Before me. Woman is her name, of Man

Extracted; for this cause he shall forgo

Father and mother, and to his wife adhere,

And they shall be one flesh, one heart, one soul.’

“She heard me thus; and, though divinely brought,

Yet innocence and virgin modesty,

Her virtue, and the conscience of her worth,

That would be wooed, and not unsought be won,

Not obvious, not obtrusive, but retired,

The most desirable—or, to say all,

Nature herself, though pure of sinful thought—

Wrought in her so, that, seeing me, she turned.

I followed her; she what was honour knew,

And with obsequious majesty approved

My pleaded reason. To the nuptial bower

I led her blushing like the Morn; all Heaven,

And happy constellations, on that hour

Shed their selectest influence; the Earth

Gave sign of gratulation, and each hill;

Joyous the birds; fresh gales and gentle airs

Whispered it to the woods, and from their wings

Flung rose, flung odours from the spicy shrub,

Disporting, till the amorous bird of night

Sung spousal, and bid haste the Evening-star

On his hill-top to light the bridal lamp.

“Thus have I told thee all my state, and brought

My story to the sum of earthly bliss

Which I enjoy, and must confess to find

In all things else delight indeed, but such

As, use or not, works in the mind no change,

Nor vehement desire—these delicacies

I mean of taste, sight, smell, herbs, fruits, and flowers,

Walks, and the melody of birds: but here,

Far otherwise, transported I behold,

Transported touch; here passion first I felt,

Commotion strange, in all enjoyments else

Superior and unmoved, here only weak

Against the charm of beauty’s powerful glance.

Or Nature failed in me, and left some part

Not proof enough such object to sustain,

Or, from my side subducting, took perhaps

More than enough—at least on her bestowed

Too much of ornament, in outward show

Elaborate, of inward less exact.

For well I understand in the prime end

Of Nature her the inferior, in the mind

And inward faculties, which most excel;

In outward also her resembling less

His image who made both, and less expressing

The character of that dominion given

O’er other creatures. Yet when I approach

Her loveliness, so absolute she seems

And in herself complete, so well to know

Her own, that what she wills to do or say

Seems wisest, virtuousest, discreetest, best.

All higher Knowledge in her presence falls

Degraded; Wisdom in discourse with her

Loses, discountenanced, and like Folly shews;

Authority and Reason on her wait,

As one intended first, not after made

Occasionally; and, to consum’mate all,

Greatness of mind and nobleness their seat

Build in her loveliest, and create an awe

About her, as a guard angelic placed.”

To whom the Angel, with contracted brow:—

“Accuse not Nature! she hath done her part;

Do thou but thine! and be not diffident

Of Wisdom; she deserts thee not, if thou

Dismiss not her, when most thou need’st her nigh,

By attribu’ting overmuch to things

Less excellent, as thou thyself perceiv’st.

For, what admir’st thou, what transports thee so?

An outside—fair, no doubt, and worthy well

Thy cherishing, thy honouring, and thy love;

Not thy subjection. Weigh with her thyself;

Then value. Oft-times nothing profits more

Than self-esteem, grounded on just and right

Well managed. Of that skill the more thou know’st,

The more she will acknowledge thee her head,

And to realities yield all her shows—

Made so adorn for thy delight the more,

So awful, that with honour thou may’st love

Thy mate, who sees when thou art seen least wise

But, if the sense of touch, whereby mankind

Is propagated, seem such dear delight

Beyond all other, think the same voutsafed

To cattle and each beast; which would not be

To them made common and divulged, if aught

Therein enjoyed were worthy to subdue

The soul of Man, or passion in him move.

What higher in her society thou find’st

Attractive, human, rational, love still;

In loving thou dost well; in passion not,

Wherein true Love consists not. Love refines

The thoughts, and heart enlarges—hath his seat

In Reason, and is judicious, is the scale

By which to Heavenly Love thou may’st ascend,

Not sunk in carnal pleasure; for which cause

Among the beasts no mate for thee was found.”

To whom thus, half abashed, Adam replied:—

“Neither her outside formed so fair, nor aught

In procreation, common to all kinds

(Though higher of the genial bed by far,

And with mysterious reverence, I deem),

So much delights me as those graceful acts,

Those thousand decencies, that daily flow

From all her words and actions, mixed with love

And sweet compliance, which declare unfeigned

Union of mind, or in us both one soul—

Harmony to behold in wedded pair

More grateful than harmonious sound to the ear.

Yet these subject not; I to thee disclose

What inward thence I feel, not therefore foiled,

Who meet with various objects, from the sense

Variously representing, yet, still free,

Approve the best, and follow what I approve.

To love thou blam’st me not—for Love, thou say’st,

Leads up to Heaven, is both the way and guide;

Bear with me, then, if lawful what I ask.

Love not the Heavenly Spirits, and how their love

Express they—by looks only, or do they mix

Irradiance, virtual or immediate touch?”

To whom the Angel, with a smile that glowed

Celestial rosy-red, Love’s proper hue,

Answered:—“Let it suffice thee that thou know’st

Us happy, and without Love no happiness.

Whatever pure thou in the body enjoy’st

(And pure thou wert created) we enjoy

In eminence, and obstacle find none

Of membrane, joint, or limb, exclusive bars.

Easier than air with air, if Spirits embrace,

Total they mix, union of pure with pure

Desiring, nor restrained conveyance need

As flesh to mix with flesh, or soul with soul.

But I can now no more: the parting Sun

Beyond the Earth’s green Cape and verdant Isles

Hesperean sets, my signal to depart.

Be strong, live happy, and love! but first of all

Him whom to love is to obey, and keep

His great command; take heed lest passion sway

Thy judgment to do aught which else free-will

Would not admit; thine and of all thy sons

The weal or woe in thee is placed; beware!

I in thy persevering shall rejoice,

And all the Blest. Stand fast; to stand or fall

Free in thine own arbitrement it lies.

Perfet within, no outward aid require;

And all temptation to transgress repel.”

So saying, he arose; whom Adam thus

Followed with benediction:—“Since to part,

Go, Heavenly Guest, Ethereal Messenger,

Sent from whose sovran goodness I adore!

Gentle to me and affable hath been

Thy condescension, and shall be honoured ever

With grateful memory. Thou to Mankind

Be good and friendly still, and oft return!”

So parted they, the Angel up to Heaven

From the thick shade, and Adam to his bower.