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And fly, ere evil intercept thy flight.'

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"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 :—
"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
Both of thy crime and punishment. Henceforth
No more be troubled how to quit the yoke
Of God's Messiah. Those indulgent laws
Will not be now voutsafed; other decrees
Against thee are gone forth without recall;
That golden sceptre which thou didst reject
Is now an iron rod to bruise and break
Thy disobedience. Well thou didst advise;
Yet not for thy advice or threats I fly
These wicked tents devoted, lest the wrath
Impendent, raging into sudden flame,
Distinguish not: for soon expect to feel
His thunder on thy head, devouring fire.
Then who created thee lamenting learn
When who can uncreate thee thou shalt know.'
"So spake the Seraph Abdiel, faithful found;/
Among the faithless faithful only he;
Among innumerable false unmoved,
Unshaken, unseduced, unterrified,
His loyalty he kept, his love, his zeal;
Nor number nor example with him wrought

To swerve from truth, or change his constant mind,
Though single. From amidst them forth he passed,
Long way through hostile scorn, which he sustained
Superior, nor of violence feared aught;

And with retorted scorn his back he turned

On those proud towers, to swift destruction doomed."

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PARADISE LOST

BOOK VI

THE ARGUMENT

Raphael continues to relate how Michael and Gabriel we to battle against Satan and his Angels. The first fight descr and his Powers retire under night. He calls a council; inv engines, which, in the second day's fight, put Michael and h some disorder; but they at length, pulling up mountains, o both the force and machines of Satan. Yet, the tumult not God, on the third day, sends Messiah his Son, for whom he the glory of that victory. He, in the power of his Father, co place, and causing all his legions to stand still on either sic chariot and thunder driving into the midst of his enemies, pu unable to resist, towards the wall of Heaven; which opening down with horror and confusion into the place of punishme for them in the Deep. Messiah returns with triumph to his

"ALL night the dreadless Angel, unpursued, Through Heaven's wide champaign held his 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
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 mig
Seem twilight here. And now went forth the

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Such as in highest heaven, arrayed in gold
Empyreal; from before her vanished Night,

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Shot through with orient beams; when all the plain
Covered with thick embattled squadrons bright,
Chariots, and flaming arms, and fiery steeds,
Reflecting blaze on-blaze, first met his view.
War he perceived, war in procinct, and found
Already known what he for news had thought
To have reported. Gladly then he mixed
Among those friendly Powers, who him received
With joy and acclamations loud, that one,
That of so many myriads fallen yet one,
Returned not lost. On to the sacred hill
They led him, high applauded, and present
Before the seat supreme; from whence a voice,
From midst a golden cloud, thus mild was heard:-
"Servant of God, well done! Well hast thou fought
The better fight, who single hast maintained
Against revolted multitudes the cause

Of truth, in word mightier than they in arms,
And for the testimony of truth hast borne
Universal reproach, far worse to bear
Than violence; for this was all thy care-
To stand approved in sight of God, though worlds
Judged thee perverse. The easier conquest now
Remains thee-aided by this host of friends,
Back on thy foes more glorious to return
Than scorned thou didst depart; and to subdue
By force who reason for their law refuse-
Right reason for their law, and for their King
Messiah, who by right of merit reigns.
Go, Michael, of celestial armies prince,
And thou, in military prowess next,
Gabriel; lead forth to battle these my sons
Invincible; lead forth my armed Saints,
By thousands and by millions ranged for fight,
Equal in number to that godless crew
Rebellious. Them with fire and hostile arms
Fearless assault; and, to the brow of Heaven

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Pursuing, drive them out from God and bliss
Into their place of punishment, the gulf
Of Tartarus, which ready opens wide
His fiery chaos to receive their fall.'

"So spake the Sovran Voice; and clouds be
To darken all the hill, and smoke to roll
In dusky wreaths reluctant flames, the sign
Of wrath awaked; nor with less dread the lou
Ethereal trumpet from on high gan blow.
At which command the Powers Militant
That stood for Heaven, in mighty quadrate jo
Of union irresistible, moved on

In silence their bright legions to the sound
Of instrumental harmony, that breathed
Heroic ardour to adventurous deeds
Under their Godlike leaders, in the cause
Of God and his Messiah. On they move,
Indissolubly firm; nor obvious hill,

Nor straitening vale, nor wood, nor stream, div
Their perfect ranks; for high above the groun
Their march was, and the passive air upbore
Their nimble tread. As when the total kind
Of birds, in orderly array on wing,

Came summoned over Eden to receive
Their names of thee; so over many a tract
Of Heaven they marched, and many a provinc
Tenfold the length of this terrene. At last,
Far in the horizon, to the north, appeared
From skirt to skirt a fiery region, stretched
In battailous aspect; and, nearer view,
Bristled with upright beams innumerable
Of rigid spears, and helmets thronged, and shie
Various, with boastful argument portrayed,
The banded Powers of Satan hasting on
With furious expedition: for they weened
That self-same day, by fight or by surprise,
To win the Mount of God, and on his throne
To set the envier of his state, the proud
Aspirer. But their thoughts proved fond and

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In the mid-way; though strange to us it seemed
At first that Angel should with Angel war,
And in fierce hosting meet, who wont to meet
So oft in festivals of joy and love
Unanimous, as sons of one great Sire,
Hymning the Eternal Father. But the shout
Of battle now began, and rushing sound
Of onset ended soon each milder thought.
High in the midst, exalted as a God,
The Apostate in his sun-bright chariot sat,
Idol of majesty divine, enclosed

With flaming Cherubim and golden shields;
Then lighted from his gorgeous throne-for now
'Twixt host and host but narrow space was left,
A dreadful interval, and front to front
Presented stood, in terrible array

Of hideous length. Before the cloudy van,
On the rough edge of battle ere it joined,
Satan, with vast and haughty strides advanced,
Came towering, armed in adamant and gold.
Abdiel that sight endured not, where he stood
Among the mightiest, bent on highest deeds,
And thus his own undaunted heart explores :-

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"O Heaven! that such resemblance of the Highest Should yet remain, where faith and realty

Remain not! Wherefore should not strength and
might

There fail where virtue fails, or weakest prove
Where boldest, though to sight unconquerable?
His puissance, trusting in the Almighty's aid,
I mean to try, whose reason I have tried
Unsound and false; nor is it aught but just
That he who in debate of truth hath won
Should win in arms, in both disputes alike
Victor. Though brutish that contést and foul,
When reason hath to deal with force, yet so
Most reason is that reason overcome."

"So pondering, and from his armed peers
Forth-stepping opposite, half-way he met

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