Page images

any thing, God and his Son excepted, and thus with a disdainful Look begun first :

Thou execrable Shape! whence and what art thou? that darest, though grim and terrible, to advance thy miscreant Form athwart my Way to yonder Gates ? Be assured that I mean to pass through them, without aneing any Leave of thee: Give Way, or feel the Effects of thy Folly; and learn by Proof, Hellborn! not to contend with Spirits of Heaven.

To whom full of Wrath, the Phantom replied, art thou the Traitor Angel ? Art thou he, who firft didit break Peace in Heaven, and Faith, which 'till then had never been broken, and in proud rebellious Arms, drew after him a third part of the Sons of Heaven, covenanted against the Highest ; for which both thou and they are here condemned, outcast from God, to pass Eternity in Woe and Misery? And doft thou reckon thyself with the Spirits of Heaven? Helldoomed! dost thou breathe Scorn and Defiance here, where I reign King? (and more to enrage thee, thy King, and Lord) Back, thou Fugitive, to thy Punishment, and add Wings to thy Speed; lest I pursue thy lingering Steps with a Whip of Scorpions (@; or at one Stroke of this Dart strange Horror shall leizę thee, and such Pangs as thou hast never felt before.

The hideous Shadow spoke thus; and so speaking and threatening, grew in Shape ten times more dreadful and deformed. On the other Side, SATAN stood unterrified, and incensed with Rage, and burned like a Comet, that fires the Length of OphiucUS (6)


(a) Scorpion ; Gr. Lat. i. e. Knots, wherewith it kills Men Throwing out Poison. A Scorpi and Beasts. on is a black, short, and very (c) Ophiucus; Lat. from the poisonous Serpent, with a small Gr. j. e. A Serpent-Bearer. An Head like a Craw-filh, and a Afron. T. A Northern Conftellong Tail with fix or seven lation, called also the Serpent, re


in the Artic (c) Sky, and from his horrid Hair is believed to shake War and Pestilence. Each at the others Head levelled his mortal Aim, their fatal Hands intending no second Stroke ; and they cast such a Frown at one another, as when two black Clouds full of Thunder, come rattling on over the Caspian (d) Sea, then stand Front to Front, hovering for a Space, 'till the Winds blow a Signal for them to join their dark Encounter in the Midst of the Air; so these mighty Combatants frowned, insomuch that Hell grew darker ; so matched they stood : For never but once more was either of them ever like to meet so great a Foe. And now great Deeds had been performed, of which all Hell would have rung, had not the other Snaky Form, that sat close by Hell Gate, and who kept the fatal Key, risen up, and rushed between with hideous Outcry.

She cried, Oh Father! what does thy Hand design against thy only Son? Oh Son! what Fury porsesses thee, to bend that mortal Dart against the Head of thy Father? And knowest for whom too; for him who lits above, and only laughs at thee, who art ordained his Drudge, to execute whatever his Wrath

presenting a Man holding a The Caspian Sea is not a Sca proSerpent in his Hand ; and con. perly so called, nor a Bay of the Gifts of twenty-nine Stars, ac Northern Ocean, as the Antients cording to Prolomy. The Fable thought; but a Lake ; and the is taken from Hercules, who greatest in the World. It lies squeezed two Serpents to Death between Perfia, Tartary, Geor. in his Cradle.

gia, and Mufcovy: about three(c) Artic; Lat. Gr. An A. thousand Miles in Compass ; for Atron. T. The Northern Circle, though the Volga (which alone where there are two Stars that discharges more Water in a go by this Name, near the North Year, than all the other Rivers Pole; the Great Bear and the in Europe) and a bundred Rivers Little Bear. The opposite Pole

The opposite Pole besides, run into it ; yet it hath is called Antartic, or the Sox no visible Outler. Therefore thern Pole.

some think it rises up in the (2) Caspian ; Scyth. from the Persian Gulph, after sunning unCafpii, an ancient People, who der Ground above two-thousand dwelt upon the South Side of it. Miles.


commands, which he calls Justice; his Wrath, which sometime or other will destroy ye

both. Thus she spoke, and at her bidding the hellish Phantom forbore, and SATAN made Answer to her.

The Outcry, and thy Words, which thou hast interposed, are so strange, that my Hand has been prevented by them, from letting thee know by Deeds what I intend; till I know first of thee what thou art, thus double-formed, and why on first meeting me on this infernal Vale thou hast called me Father, and that horrid Shape my Son: I know thee not, nor ever 'till now faw a Sight more detestable than thee and him.

To whom the Portress of the Gate of Hell made Answer,

Hast thou forgot me then ? And do I seem so very foul in thine Eye now, who was once esteemed so fair in Heaven, when at the Assembly, and in Sight of all the Seraphim, who combined with thee in bold Conspiracy against the great King of Heaven, all on a sudden a miserable Pain seized on thee, thy Eyes grew dim, and swam in Darkness, while thy Head threw forth Flames thick and fast, 'till it opened on the Left Side ; from whence I fprung, a Goddess armed, most like to thyself in Shape and Brightness of Countenance, then shining heavenly fair : All the Host of Heaven were seized with Amazement ; they started back, being at first afraid, and called me Sin, and held me for an unlucky Omen ; but grown more familiar, I pleased, and with attracting Graces, won thofe who before were most averse, and thee chief of all, who viewing in me a perfect Image of thyself, becamest enamoured of me, and such Joy didst often take with me in Secret, that my Womb conceived a growing Burthen : Mean while War' arose in Heaven, and Battles were fought, whereon remained (for what


else could) to our Almighty Foe a compleat Victory; to our Part Loss and Defeat through all Heaven ; down they fell, driven headlong from the Skies, into this Deep, and in the general Fall I fell also; at which Time this powerful Key was given into my Hand, with Charge to keep the Gates shut for ever, which none can pass without opening. Here I fat, penfive and alone ; but not long, before my Womb, made pregnant by thee and now grown excessively, felt prodigious Motion, and Pains of Child-birth; at last this odious Offspring, whom thou seest here, thine own Begotten, violently breaking his Way, tore through my Entrails, so that distorted with Fear and Pain, my nether Parts grew thus transformed: But he, my inbred Enemy, issued forth, terribly shaking his fatal Dart made to destroy: I fed away, and cried out, Death! at that hedious Name Hell trembled, and sighed from all her Caves, and resounded back, DEATH! I fed, but he pursued, (though more infamed, it seems, with Lust, than with Rage) and being far swifter, overtook me his Mother, quite overcome with Fear; and in forcible Embraces, and foul engendering with me in that Rape, begot these yelling Monsters, that as thou faweit surround me with ceaseless Cry; with infinite Sorrow to be hourly conceived, and hourly born ; for when they list they return into the Womb that bred them, and howl and gnaw all my Bowels for their Food; then bursting forth, put me to fresh and terrible Pain, so that I neither find Reft or Intermission. Directly opposite and before my Eyes sits grim DEATH, my Son and Foe, who sets them on; and full soon would even devour me, his parent, but that he well knows that his End is involved with mine; he knows that I should prove a bitter Morsel and his Bane, whenever that shall happen; so was it pronounced by Fate.

pronounced by Fate. But I forewarn thee, my Father! do thou shun his deadly Arrow; neither vainly have Hope to be invulnerable in those bright Arms of thine, though they were made in Hea


ven, for that mortal Stroke there's none can resist, excepting He who reigns above.

She finished here, and the fubtle Fiend soon learned what was beit for him to do; so that now grown milder, he answered thus smoothly:

Dear Daughter I since thou claimest me to be thy Father, and Thewest me my fair Son here, (the dear Pledge of Dalliance which I had with thee in Heaven, Joys then sweet, now sad to mention, through the fatal Change that has befallen us, quite unthought of and unforeseen) I come not here as an Enemy, but to fet free from out this dismal and dark House of Pain, both him and thee, and all the Host of heavenly Spirits, that armed in our juft Pretences fell with us from on high ; I now go from them alone, so has it been my Choice, on this uncouth Errand, and expose myfelf, one for all, to tread with lonely Steps the fathomless Deep, and through Immensity search with wandering Enquiry a Place, which was foretold fhould be created : and if we may judge by concurring Signs it is now created; a large Globe, a Place of Blils, on the Borders of Heaven, and already therein is placed a Race of upstart Creatures, to supply, it may be, our vacant Room, though removed farther off, lest Heaven being over-stocked with too powerful a Multitude, new Broils might happen : Whether this be, or any Thing more secret now designed, I am hastening to know, and this once known, I shall soon return, and conduct ye to the Place, where thou and DEATH shall dwell at Ease, and filently and unseen pass to and fro; there shall ye both be fed, and filled immeasurably, for all Things shall be your Prey.

He ceased here, for they both seemed highly pleased, and Death grinned horribly a ghastly Smile, at hearing that his Hunger should be satisfied, and blest his Maw, that was destined to so good an Hour ;

« PreviousContinue »