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570

With soot and cinders fill'd; so oft they fell
Into the same illusion, not as Man
Whom they triumph’d once laps'd. Thus were they

plagu’d
And worn with famine, long and ceaseless hiss,
Till their lost shape, permitted, they resum’d,
Yearly injoin'd, some say, to undergo

579

et ora

and long and ceaseless hiss; but Tristia tentantum sensu torquebit that might be remedied thus,

amaror. The sound of Virgil's words ad

And worn with famine long, and

ceaseless hiss. mirably expresses the thing ; nor are Milton's less expressive 575.

-some say,] I know in this line, and that foregoing, not, or cannot recollect from which th' offended taste

what author or what tradition With spattering noise rejected.

Milton hath borrowed this no

tion. Mr. Warburton believes 572. Whom they triumph'd once

that he took the hint from the laps'd.] Is the construction

old romances of which he was a thus, Notas Man whom they

very triumphed over, once lapsed, seme great reader; where it

common to meet with these lapsus est: or thus rather, Quo semel lapso triumpharunt, Whom annual, or monthly, or weekly being

once lapsed they triumphed? penances of men changed into Mr. Fenton's pointing would animals: but the words some lead one to the former sense,

say seem to imply that he has but Milton's own will rather

some express authority for it, determine one to the latter; it is the speech of the Faery

and what approaches nearest to and thus Dr. Trapp translates it, Manto in Ariosto, cant. xliii. Non ut homo; quo, egere, semel

st. 98. labente, triumphos. The antithesis is between so oft Ch' ogni settimo giorno ogn' una è they fell and once lapsed; and

certa,

Che la sua forma in biscia si conas so oft they fell are the first words of the sentence, once lapsed is very artfully thrown

Each sev'nth day we constrained are to

take to the end.

Upon ourselves the person of a 573. And worn with famine,

Harrington. long and ceaseless hiss,] Dr. Bentley has several objections 575. Surely the words some to this line; but the greatest say rather imply that he had objection to it is the want of a no express authority for the idea. conjunction between with famine Compare Comus, 432.

snake, &c.

verta.

This annual humbling certain number'd days,
To dash their pride, and joy for Man seduc'd.
However some tradition they dispers'd
Among the heathen of their purchase got,
And fabled how the Serpent, whom they callid

580

Some say no evil thing that walks by Now Ophion according to the night

Greek etymology signifies a SerHath hurtful power o'er true vir.

pent; and therefore Milton conginity.

ceives that by Ophion the old And L'Allegro, 17.

Serpent might be intended, the Or whether, as some sager sing, Serpent whom they called Ophion: The frolick wind that breathes the

and Eurynome signifying widespring, &c

ruling, he says, but says doubtWhere see Mr. Thyer's note. fully, that she might be the See also Mr. Warton's note, wide-encroaching Eve perhaps. Comus, 432. E.

For I understand the wide-en580. And fabled how the Ser- croaching not as an epithet to pent, &c.] Dr. Bentley is for Eurynome, explaining her name, rejecting this whole passage: but as an epithet to Eve, Milton but our author is endeavouring having placed the comma after to shew, that there was some Eurynome, and not after the tradition, among the heathen, of wide-encroaching. And besides the great power that Satan had obtained over mankind. And Ere to shew the similitude be

some epithet should be added to this he proves by what is related tween her and Eurynome, and of Ophion with Eurynome. Ophion why he takes the one for the with Eurynome, he says, had first other; and therefore in allusion the rule of high Olympus, and

to the name of Eurynome he were driven thence by Satan and styles Eve the wide-encroaching, Ops or Rhea, ere yet their son

as extending her rule and domiDictæan Jove was born, so called nion farther

than she should over from Dicte a mountain of Crete her husband, and affecting God. where he was educated. And head. This explanation may be Milton seems to have taken this farther confirmed and illustrated story from Apollonius Rhodius, by the following note of the Argonaut. i. 503.

learned Mr. Jortin. " Milton Ηειδεν δ' ώς πρωτον Οφιων Ευρυνομησι “ took this story from ApolloΩκεανις «φοεντος εχον κρατος Ουλυμ: “ nius i. who is quoted by Lloyd's

“ Dictionary, under the word Ωσε βιη και χερσιν, ο μεν Κρονω εικαθε ó

“Ophion. Prometheus in ÆsΗ δε Ρεη" επεσον δ' εν κυμασιν Ωκεανοιο. chylus, ver. 956. says, that two Οι δε τις μακαρεσσι θεους Τιτησιν ανασ- « Gods had borne rule before

Jupiter: where the Scholiast; Ο φρα Ζους ετι κερος επι Φρεσι νηπια

« έβασιλευσε πρωτον μεν ο Οφιων και

ó Δικταιον ναιεσκεν σπιος.

Ευρυνομη" επειτα Κρονος και Για':

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585

Ophion, with Eurynome, the wide
Encroaching Eve perhaps, had first the rule
Of high Olympus, thence by Saturn driven
And Ops, ere yet Dictæan Jove was born.

Mean while in Paradise the hellish pair
Too soon arriv’d, Sin there in pow'r before,
Once actual, now in body, and to dwell
Habitual habitant; behind her Death
Close following pace for pace, not mounted yet

,
On his pale horse: to whom Sin thus began.

590

Meta Tauta do ó Zrus xan Heuhas infinite allusions to places of “ Others will have it that Ouga- Scripture, I have only taken no

nos and in reigned first. I tice in my remarks of such as are “think the epithet wide-encroach- of a poetical nature, and which

ing belongs to Eve, not to Eu- are woven with great beauty

rynome. He calls Eve wide- into the body of his fable. Of encroaching, hecause, as he tells this kind is that passage in the

us, she wanted to be supe- present book, where describing " rior to her husband, to be a Sin and Death, as marching “ Goddess, &c.

through the works of Nature, 586. – Sin there in pow'r be- he adds,

fore, Once actual, now in body, and

-behind her Death to dwell

Close following pace for pace, not

mounted yet Habitual habitant ;]

On his pale horse : The sense is, That before the fall Sin was in power, or poten- Which alludes to that passage tially, in Paradise; that once, in Scripture, so wonderfully poviz. upon the fall, it was actually etical, and terrifying to the

. there, though not bodily; but imagination, Rev. vi. 8. And I that now, upon its arrival in Pa- looked, and behold a pale horse ; radise, it was there in body, and and his nanie that sat on hin was dwelt as a constant inhabitant. Death, and Hell followed with The words in body allude to him: and power was given unto what St. Paul says Rom. vi. 6. them, over the fourth part of the that the body of sin might be de- 'earth, to kill with sword, and with stroyed. Pearce.

hunger, and with death, and 590. On his pale horse :) Though with the beasts of the earth. Adthe author in the whole course dison. of his poem, and particularly in Milton has given a fine turn the book we are now examining, to this poetical thought, by say

Second of Satan sprung, all conqu’ring Death, What think'st thou of our empire now, though earn'd With travel difficult, not better far Then still at hell's dark threshold to have sat watch, Unnam’d, undreaded, and thyself half starv’d? 595

Whom thus the Sin-born monster answer'd soon. To me, who with eternal famine pine, Alike is Hell, or Paradise, or Heaven. There best, where most with ravin I may meet; Which here, though plenteous, all too little seems 600 To stuff this maw, this vast unhide-bound corpse.

To whom th’incestuous mother thus replied. Thou therefore on these herbs, and fruits, and flowers Feed first, on each beast next, and fish, and fowl, No homely morsels; and whatever thing

605 The scythe of Time mows down, devour unspar'd; Till I in Man residing through the race, His thoughts, his looks, words, actions all infect, And season him thy last and sweetest prey.

This said, they both betook them several ways, 610 Both to destroy, or unimmortal make All kinds, and for destruction to mature Sooner or later ; which th’ Almighty seeing,

ing that Death had not mounted plain enough. For Death though yet on his pale horse: for though lean is yet described as a vast he was to have a long and all- monster in book ii. And his conquering power, he had not skin was not tight-braced, and yet begun, neither was he for did not look sleek and smooth, some time to put it in execution. as when creatures are swoln and Greenwood.

full; but hung loose about him, 601. this vast unhide-bound and was capable of containing a corpse.] It is strange how Dr. great deal without being disBentley and others have puzzled tended. this passage. The meaning is

615

From his transcendent seat the saints among,
To those bright orders utter'd thus his voice.

See with what heat these dogs of hell advance
To waste and havoc yonder world, which I
So fair and good created, and had still
Kept in that state, had not the folly' of Man
Let in these wasteful furies, who impute
Folly to me, so doth the prince of hell

620

that

616. See with what heat these Phil, iii. 2. Without are dogs. dogs of hell advance &c.] We Rev. xxii. 15. Thus far perhaps may be certain I think that Mil- our author may be justified, but ton' had his eye upon this pas- in sume other parts of this speech sage in Sophocles, Electra, 1385. the metaphors are wonderfully

coarse indeed, and seem to be ιδεσ οσε προνέμεται Το δυσερισον αίμα φυσων αρης

beneath the dignity of an epic B:Caoi

αρτι δωματων υποσεγον poem, and much more unbeΜεταδρομοι κακων πανεργηματων, coming the majesty of the diΑφυκτοι κυνες.

vine Speaker; unless they may Behold, he comes! the slaughter. be vindicated by the folbreathing God

lowing passage in Scripture, Mars, ever thirsting for the mur

which is expressed by the Son of th'rer's blood;

God himself. Rev. iii. 16. I will And see the dogs of war are close behind.

Franklin, spue thee out of my mouth. The

foregoing quotation from ShakeAnd may we not suppose

speare, he alluded too to the following passage in Shakespeare's Julius Cry Havoc, and let slip the dogs of Cæsar? Act iii.

war, And Cæsar's spirit, ranging for re- Mr. Warburton thinks much

venge, With Atè by his side come hot from happier (as indeed it is) than hell,

this passage in our author, beShall in these confines, with a mo- cause havoc was formerly the narch's voice,

cry made use of when the irreCry Havoc, and let slip the dogs of gulars in an army destroyed all

before them with fire and sword. Homer often puts such language When Henry V. made his expeinto the mouths of his Gods and dition into France, he had rules heroes, and there are some such and orders of war drawn up, (a expressions in Scripture. For copy of which is in Lincoln's dogs have compassed me. Psal. Inn library,) where there is one xxii. 16. They are greedy dogs. chapter denouncing the punishIsai. lvi. 11. Beware of dogs. ment on those who сту Havoc.

war.

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