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Beyond the Cape of Hope, and now are passid
Mozambic, off at sea north-east winds blow
Sabæan odours from the spicy shore
Of Araby the bless'd; with such delay

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Well pleased they slack their course, and many a league
Cheer'd with the grateful smell old Ocean smiles.

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Southward through Eden went a river large,
Nor changed his course, but through the shaggy hill
Pass'd underneath ingulfd; for God had thrown
That mountain as his garden mould, high raised
Upon the rapid current, which through veins
Of porous earth with kindly thirst up drawn,
Rose a fresh fountain, and with many a rill
Water'd the garden ; thence united fell
Down the steep glade, and met the nether flood,
Which from his darksome passage now appears ;
And now, divided into four main streams,
Runs diverse, wandering many a famous realm
And country, whereof here needs no account;
But rather to tell how, if art could tell,
How from that sapphire fount the crisped brooks,
Rolling on orient pearl and sands of gold,
With mazy error under pendent shades
Ran nectar, visiting each plant, and fed
Flowers worthy of Paradise; which not nice art
In beds and curious knots, but nature boon
Pour'd forth profuse on hill, and dale, and plain;
Both where the morning sun first warmly smote
The open field, and where the unpierced shade
Imbrown’d the noontide bowers. Thus was this place
A happy rural seat of various view:
Groves whose rich trees wept odorous gums and balm;
Others, whose fruit, burnish'd with golden rind,

Hung amiable, Hesperian fables true,
If true, here only, and of delicious taste.
Betwixt them lawns, or level downs, and flocks
Grazing the tender herb, were interposed;
Or palmy hillock, or the flowery lap
Of some irriguous valley spread her store;
Flowers of all hue, and without thorn the rose.
Another side, umbrageous grots and caves
Of cool recess, o'er which the mantling vine
Lays forth her purple grape, and gently creeps
Luxuriant; meanwhile murmuring waters fall
Down the slope hills, dispersed, or in a lake,
That to the fringed bank with myrtle crown'd
Her crystal mirror holds, unite their streams.
The birds their quire apply; airs, vernal airs,
Breathing the smell of field and grove, attune
The trembling leaves; while universal Pan,
Knit with the Graces and the Hours in dance,
Led on the eternal spring. Not that fair field
Of Enna where Proserpine gathering flowers,
Herself a fairer flower, by gloomy Dis
Was gather'd, which cost Ceres all that pain
To seek her through the world ; nor that sweet grove

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Of Daphne by Orontes, and the inspired
Castalian spring, might with this Paradise
Of Eden strive.

Id.

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XIV.

THE FIRST MAN AND WOMAN.

Two of far nobler shape, erect and tall,
Godlike erect, with native honour clad
In naked majesty, seem'd lords of all;
And worthy seem'd: for in their looks divine
The image of their glorious Maker shone,
Truth, wisdom, sanctitude severe and pure,
Severe, but in true filial freedom placed ;
Whence true authority in men: though both
Not equal, as their sex not equal, seemid;
For contemplation he and valour form'd,
For softness she and sweet attractive grace ;
He for God only, she for God in him.
His fair large front and eye sublime declared
Absolute rule; and hyacinthine locks
Round from his parted forelock manly hung
Clustering, but not beneath his shoulders broad :
She, as a veil, down to the slender waist
Her unadorned golden tresses wore
Disheveld, but in wanton ringlets waved
As the vine curls her tendrils; which implied
Subjection, but required with gentle sway,
And by her yielded, by him best received,
Yielded with coy submission, modest pride,
And sweet, reluctant, amorous delay.
Nor those mysterious parts were then conceald;
Then was not guilty shame: dishonest shame
Of nature's works, honour dishonourable,
Sin-bred, how have ye troubled all mankind
With shows instead, mere shows of seeming pure,

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And banished from man's life his happiest life,
Simplicity and spotless innocence!
So passed they naked on, nor shunned the sight
Of God or angel, for they thought no ill :
So hand in hand they passed, the loveliest pair
That ever since in love's embraces met;
Adam the goodliest man of men since born
His sons, the fairest of her daughters Eve.

Id.

XV.

EVE'S FIRST EXPERIENCE.

That day I oft remember, when from sleep
I first awaked, and found myself reposed
Under a shade on flowers; much wondering where
And what I was, whence thither brought, and how.
Not distant far from thence a murmuring sound
Of waters issued from a cave, and spread
Into a liquid plain; then stood unmoved,
Pure as the expanse of heaven: I thither went
With unexperienced thought, and laid me down
On the green bank, to look into the clear
Smooth lake, that to me seem'd another sky.
As I bent down to look, just opposite
A shape within the watery gleam appear’d,
Bending to look on me: I started back,
It started back; but pleased I soon return'd,
Pleased it return'd as soon with answering looks
Of sympathy and love: there I had fix'd

* An improvement on the charming original in the Metamorphoseon III. of Ovid—the story of Narcissus.

Mine eyes till now, and pined with vain desire,
Had not a voice thus warn'd me: What thou seest,
What there thou seest, fair creature, is thyself;
With thee it came and goes : but follow me,
And I will bring thee where no shadow stays
Thy coming, and thy soft embraces; he

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Whose image thou art, him thou shalt enjoy
Inseparably thine; to him shalt bear
Multitudes like thyself, and thence be callid
Mother of human race. What could I do,
But follow straight, invisibly thus led ?
Till I espied thee, fair indeed and tall,
Under a platane ; yet, methought, less fair,
Less winning soft, less amiably mild,
Than that smooth watery image. Back I turn'd:
Thou following criedst aloud, Return, fair Eve;
Whom fliest thou? whom thou fliest, of him thou art,
His flesh, his bone; to give thee being I lent
Out of my side to thee, nearest my heart,
Substantial life; to have thee by my side
Henceforth an individual solace dear.
Part of my soul, I seek thee, and thee claim,
My other half. With that thy gentle hand
Seized mine: I yielded : and from that time see

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How beauty is excelld by manly grace
And wisdom, which alone is truly fair.

So spake our general mother; and with eyes
Of conjugal attraction unreproved
And meek surrender, half embracing leaned
On our first father; half her swelling breast,
Naked met his, under the flowing gold
Of her loose tresses hid: he, in delight
Both of her beauty and submissive charms,
Smiled with superior love; as Jupiter

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