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The force of those dire arms ?| Yet not for those, 95 Nor) what the potent Victor in his rage
Can else inflict, do I repent) or change,
That with the Mightiest raised me to contend, I 100 And to the fierce contention brought along
Innumerable force of Spirits armed,]
In dubious battle on the plains of Heaven,] 105 And shook his throne.] What] though the field be lost ? |
All is not lost ;| the unconquerable will,
And, what is else, not to be overcome ; 110 That glory never shall his wrath or might Extort from me.]
To bow and sue for grace
Doubted his empire ; | that were low indeed,) 115 That were an ignominy, and shame beneath
This downfall ;) since, by fate, the strength of Gods
94. The order is :-Yet not for those [arıns], nor for that,)) which the potent victor in his rage can else inflict, / do I repent,)) or, though changed in outward lustre, change that fixed mind, and high disdain, (tlowing] from sense of injured merit,]] that raised me to contend with the mightiest, / and brought along (with me) to the contention [an] innumerable force of armed spirits | that durst [dared to] dislike his reign, | and preferring me, opposed his utmost power with adverse power in dubious hattle on the plain of heaven.] and shook his throne.]
106. The unconquerable will ... to te
overcome All in apposition with that glory.
111. To bow and sue, &c.-Infinitives in appos, with that, in line 114.
113. This.-We use the demonst. pronouns like the Latin hic, in the sense of the Possessive Pron. of the first person. This arm is therefore equivalent to my arm ; as this country means our country. Comp. this, 1. 117.
116. Since by fate, &c.—These are adverbial sentences to that were an ignominy, showing the reason why.
117. Empyreal-Pure as fire or light, not gross as our bodies are.
In arms not worse, in foresight much advanced, 120 We may with more successful hope resolve
To wage, by force or guile, eternal war,
Sole reigning, holds the tyranny of Heaven.] 125 So spake the apostate Angel, though in pain,
Vaunting aloud, but racked with deep despair :/
[O Prince ! O Chief of many thronëd Powers,]
That led the embattled Seraphim to war 130 Under thy conduct, / and, in dreadful deeds
Fearless, endangered Heaven's perpetual King,
Too well I see and rue the dire event, | 135 That with sad overthrow, and foul defeat,
Hath lost us Heaven, and all this mighty host
Can perish ; | for the mind and spirit remains 140 Invincible, and vigour soon returns, |
Though all our glory extinct,) and happy state
Of force believe Almighty, / since no less 145 Than such could have o'erpowered such force as ours |
Have left us this our spirit and strength entire
121, Tyranny, in its Greek sense of usurped supreme power.
129. The antecedent to that is Powers, not Chief. This line is grammatically only an interjection, though it furnishes the antecedent to the following Adj. Sentences.
131 Perpetual.—The fallen angel grudges the Almighty the epithet eternal.
133. The notion of Fate as a mysterious power, to which even the gods must bend, is borrowed from the Greek mythology, and
entirely foreign to the Old as well as New Testament. In how far Milton was justified by poetical or theological motives to introduce it into his poem, is a very difficult and delicate question.
138. Adverbial adjunct to "low"-how low?
141. Supply is.
144. Take no less than such, as Subj., and such force as ours, as Obj.
Strongly to suffer and support our pains,)
Or do him mightier service, as his thralls 150 By right of war,) whate'er his business be |
Here in the heart of Hell to work in fire,
Strength undiminished, or eternal being 155 To undergo eternal punishment ? |
Whereto with speedy words the Arch-Fiend replied. |
[Fallen Cherub !] to be weak is miserable, Doing or suffering | but of this be sure,
To do aught good never will be our task, s 160 But ever to do ill our sole delight,
As being the contrary to his high will]
Our labour must be to pervert that end,
Which oft-times may succeed, / so as perhaps
But see !] the angry Victor hath recalled 170 His ministers of vengeance and pursuit
Back to the gates of Heaven :/ the sulphurous hail,
Of Heaven received us falling ; | and the thunder, 175 Winged with red lightning and impetuous rage,
147. Attributive clause to strength.
150. Whate'er his business be.-Adv. Sent. to do him service.
151. To work-in appos. with service. 153. What, repeated from line 143. 158. Doing
or suffering — Adverbial pbrase; or they might be regarded as agreeing with " to us” understood.
161. As being—Qualifying ill.
171. The sulphurous hail o'erblown-i.e., the o'erblowing, the passing away of the sulphurous bail.
173. Construe—that received us falling from the precipice of heaven.
Perhaps hath spent his shafts, and ceases now
Or satiate fury, yield it from our Foe. /
The seat of Desolation, void of light,
From off the tossing of these fiery waves ;] 185 There rest,] if any rest can harbour there ; |
And, re-assembling our afflicted Powers,
How overcome this dire calamity ;]
If not,] what resolution from despair.]
Thus Satan talking to his nearest mate
That sparkling blazed ;] his other parts besides, 195 Prone on the flood, extended long and large,
Lay floating many a rood ; in bulk as huge |
Briareos or Typhon) whom the den
Leviathan,) which God of all his works
176. His is used for the Neuter as well as Mascul. gender. The pronoun its rarely occurs in Milton, and never in the English Bible. It is of comparatively recent introduction. Ree Trench, English Past and Present ; Craig, The English of Shakspere.
177. Vast and boundless. The attribute boundless, coming immediately after vast, destroys all the specific power of the latter.
192. Supply spake after Satan.
195. Prone means properly lying forward on one's front; the opposite is supine.
197. The relative whom has Titanian, or Earth-born, for its antecedent, an order borrowed from the Latin.
199. Briareos or Typhon.-One of the Titans.
201. Leviathan, which.-Leviathan is here of the neuter gender, but v. 203, it is mas. culine. Thus, with reference to ship, we use she and which.
Created hugest that swim the ocean stream : 1
The pilot of some small night-foundered skiff 205 Deeming some island, oft,) as seamen tell,
With fixed anchor in his scaly rind
So stretched out huge in length the Arch-Fiend lay, 210 Chained on the burning lake :/ nor ever thence
Had risen,] or heaved his head] but that the will
That with reiterated crimes he might
Evil to others; and, enraged, might see]
Forthwith upright he rears from off the pool
In billows, leave i' the midst a horrid vale.] 225 Then with expanded wings he steers his flight
Aloft, incumbent on the dusky air, 1
202. Hugest must be read as a monosyllable to suit the verse, just as highest, ii. 30.
202. The ocean of the early Greek poets was a river flowing round the flat circular earth.
204. Night founder'd.-Foundered is here not the naval terin, meaning filled and sinking, but it means, stopped, overtaken by the night, prevented from proceeding, as it occurs in Comus, 488,
Either some one like us night-foundered
here. 205. Deeming governs him, 203. Construe, Deeming bim an island, the pilot moors by his side.
211. But-Prep. governing the Noun Sent. following
220. Supply might see.
224. Horrid vale.-Bentley very properly asks, Why should the vale be horrid ? and suggests gaping instead.