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Raised on a mount, with pyramids and towers
770 Of counterfeited truth thus held their ears :
Thrones, Dominations, Princedoms, Virtues, If these magnific titles yet remain
[Powers-Not merely titular, since by decree Another now hath to himself engrossed All power, and us eclipsed under the name Of King Anointed; for whom all this haste Of midnight march, and hurried meeting here, This only to consult, how we may best, With what may be devised of honours new, Receive him coming to receive from us Knee-tribute yet unpaid, prostration vile ! Too much to one! but double how endured To one and to his image now proclaimed ? But what if better counsels might erect Our minds, and teach us to cast off this yoke ! Will ye submit your necks, and choose to bend The supple knee? Ye will not, if I trust To know ye right, or if ye know yourselves Natives and Sons of Heaven possessed before 790 By none, and, if not equal all, yet free, Equally free ; for orders and degrees Jar not with liberty, but well consist. Who can in reason, then, or right, assume Monarchy over such as live by right His equals--if in power and splendour less,
In freedom equal ? or can introduce
800 Of those imperial titles which assert Our being ordained to govern, not to serve !'
“ Thus far his bold discourse without control
“O argument blasphemous, false, and proud-
820 One over all with unsucceeded power ! Shalt thou give law to God ? shalt thou dispute With Him the points of liberty, who made Thee what thou art, and formed the Powers of Heaven Such as he pleased, and circumscribed their being ? Yet, by experience taught, we know how good, And of our good and of our dignity How provident, he is—how far from thought To make us less; bent rather to exalt Our happy state, under one head more near 830 United. But—to grant it thee unjust That equal over equals monarch reignThyself, though great and glorious, dost thou count, Or all angelic nature joined in one, Equal to him, begotten Son, by whom,
As by his Word, the mighty Father inade
So spake the fervent Angel ; but his zeal
“That we were formed, then, say'st thou? and the
“ He said ; and, as the sound of waters deep, Hoarse murmur echoed to his words applause Through the infinite host. Nor less for that
The flaming Seraph, fearless, though alone, Encompassed round with foes, thus answered bold :
6. O alienate from God, O Spirit accursed, Forsaken of all good! I see thy fall Determined, and thy hapless crew involved In this perfidious fraud, contagion spread
“ So spake the Seraph Abdiel, faithful found ;
THE END OF THE FIFTH BOOK.
Raphael continues to relate how Michael and Gabriel were sent forth to battle against Satan and his Angels. The first fight described : Satan and his Powers retire under night. He calls a council ; invents devilish engines, which, in the second day's fight, put Michael and his Angels to some disorder; but they at length, pulling up mountains, overwhelmed both the force and machines of Satan. Yet, the tumult not so ending, God, on the third day, sends Messiah his Son, for whom he had reserved the glory of that victory. He, in the power of his Father, coming to the place, and causing all his legions to stand still on either side, with his chariot and tounder driving into the midst of his enemies, pursues them, unable to resist, towards the wall of Heaven ; which opening, they leap down with horror and confusion into the place of punishment prepared for them in the Deep. Messiah returns with triumph to his Father.
“ALL night the dreadless Angel
, unpursued, Through Heaven's wide champaign held his
way, till Morn, Waked by the circling Hours, with rosy hand Unbarred the gates of Light. There is a cave Within the Mount of God, fast by his throne, Where Light and Darkness in perpetual round Lodge and dislodge by turns—which makes through
Heaven Grateful vicissitude, like day and night; Light issues forth, and at the other door Obsequious Darkness enters, till her hour To veil the heaven, though darkness there might well Seem twilight here. And now went forth the Morn Such as in highest heaven, arrayed in gold Empyreal; from before her vanished Night, Shot through with orient beams; when all the plain Covered with thick embattled squadrons bright,