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refuted by the Son of God with strong unaffected eloquence, is the peculiar excellence of this Poem. Satan here defends a bad cause with great skill and subtilty, as one thoroughly versed in that Craft,

Qui facere affúerat
Candida de nigris, et de candentibus atra.

Ovid, Met. XI.

314. His character is well drawn. In his speeches we may observe the following Particulars.

1. His pretended frankness and ingenuity, in confeffing who he was, when he found he was difcovered : B. I. 358.

'Tis true, I am that Spirit unfortunate, Who, leagu’d with millions more in rash revolt, Kept not my happy station.

II. His plea for himself, that he was not a creature quite lost to all good : B. I. 377:

For what he bids 1 do: though I have lost
Much luftre of my native brightness, lost
To be belov'd of God; I have not lost
To love, at least contemplate and admire,
What I see excellent in good, or fair,
Or virtuous; I should fo have lost all sense.
III. His ingenious, moving, and humble apology
for lying and shuffling; B. I. 468.

Sharply thoạ haft insisted on rebuke,
And urg'd me hard with doings, which not Will
But misery hath wrested from me. Where

Easily

Easily canst thou find one miserable,
And not inforc'd oft-times to part from truth,
If it may stand him more in stead to lie,
Say, and unsay, féign, flatter, or abjure ?
But thou art plac'd above me, thou art Lord;
From thee I can, and must, submiss endure
Check or reproof, and glad t escape so quit.
HARD are the ways of truth, and rough to walk;
Smooth on the tongue discours'd, pleasing to

th' ear,

And tuneable as silvan pipe or fong, &c.

V. His strong and lively description of his own wretched state. Chrift says to him, B. III. 198, &c.

But what concerns it thee, when I begin
My everlasting kingdom ? why art thou
Solicitous ? what moves thy inquifition?
Know'st thou not that my rising is thy fall,
And my promotion will be thy destruction?

To whom the Tempter, inly rack’d, reply'd: Let that come when it comes; all hope is loft Of my reception into grace; what worse? For where no hope is left, is left no fear : If there be worse, the expectation more Of worse torments me than the feeling can. I would be at the worst: worst is iny port, My harbour, and my ultimate repose; The end I would attain, my final good.

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VI. His artful flattery to Christ, B. III. 214.
I lhall, says he, be punish'd,

Whether thợu
Reign or reigni not; though to that gentle brów
Willingly I could flie; and hope thy reign
(From that placid aspect and meek regard,)
Rather than aggravate my evil state,
Would stand between me and thy Father's ire,
Whole ire I dread more than the fire of Hell;
A shelter, and a kind of shading cool
Interpofition, as a summer's cloud.

Isaiah, xviji. 4. Like a cloud of dew in the heat of barvest. xxv. 4. · Alhadow from the heat. xxxii. 2. As the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.

VII. His submissive and cunning reply, taught him by his fear, after he had endeavoured to persuade Christ to worship him, and had received a fevere reprimand : B. IV. 196.

Be not so fore offended, Son of God,
Though fons of God both angels are and men,
If I, to try whether in higher sort
Than these thou bear'st that title, have propos'd
What both from men and Angels I receive,
Tetrarchs of fire, air, flood, add on the earth
Nations besides, from all the quarter'd winds,
God of this world invok'd, and world beneath.
Who then thou art, whose coming is foretold
To me so fatal, me it most concerns.

The

1

The tryal hath endamag'd thee no way, Rather inore honour left, and more esteem; Me nought advantag'd, missing what I aim'd.

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Milton lays the accent on the last syllable of vanquish here, as elsewhere in triumph: and in many places, in my opinion, he imitates the Latin and Greek prosody, and makes a vowel long before two consonants.

V. 201,
When I was yet a child, no childish play
To me was pleasing:

Milton seems to allude to Callimachus, who says elegantly of young Jupiter. Hymn in Jov. 56.

Οξυ δ' αναβησας, ταχινοι δε τοι ηλθον τελοι.

Αλλ' ετι παιδος εων εφρασσαο παύλα τελεια. . Swift was thy growth, and early was thy bloom; But earlier wisdom crown'd thy infant days.

V. 222.

By winning words to conquer willing hearts. Virgil, Georg. IV. 561.

Victorque volentes Per populos dat jura. Whịch expression of Virgil's, by the way, seems to be taken from Xenophon, Oeconom. XXI. 12. Ου γαρ πανυ μοι δοκει όλον τελι το αγαθον ανθρωπινου ειναι, αλλα θειου, το εθελουλων αρχειν. I could add other passages of Xenophon, which Virgil has manifestly copied,

These growing though er foon perceiving,

Pric'd.
By words at times caft.
Virgil, Æn. I. 592.)

Latona tacitum pertentant auaia peatus.

***

V. 307
Or harbour'd in one cave.

Read, some cave."

v. 372.

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