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William Blake (1757–1827). The Poetical Works. 1908.

Selections from ‘Jerusalem’

[Albion’s Spectre]

(Jerusalem, f. 54, ll. 15–24.)

BUT the Spectre, like a hoar-frost and a mildew, rose over Albion,

Saying: ‘I am God, O Sons of Men! I am your Rational Power!

Am I not Bacon and Newton and Locke, who teach Humility to Man,

Who teach Doubt and Experiment? and my two wings, Voltaire, Rousseau?

Where is that Friend of Sinners, that Rebel against my Laws,

Who teaches Belief to the Nations and an unknown Eternal Life?

Come hither into the desert and turn these stones to bread!

Vain, foolish Man! wilt thou believe without Experiment,

And build a World of Phantasy upon my great Abyss,

A World of Shapes in craving lust and devouring appetite?’