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From the sun's axle, they with labour push'd
673. -to Taurus] Dr. Bent The sun, as from Thyestean ley reads through Taurus, through banquet, turn'd &c.] it and Gemini, up to Cancer. Dr. Bentley says that Thy éstean And Mr. Pope approves this for Thyestéan is intolerable: but emendation, and it seems pro- I have shewn that Milton used bable, through Taurus and By 'gean for Ægéan, in my note Leo afterwards answering to on i. 745. and so our poet ir his each other.
Samson Agonistes, ver. 133. uses 686. --Estotiland,] A great Chalybean for Chalybéan. Intract of land in the north of stances of such a poetical liberty America, towards the Arctic may be found in the best an.. Circle and Hudson's Bay; as cient poets as well as in the Magellan is a country in South modern ones. Pearce. America, which together with Thyestes and Atreus,brethren, its straits took their name of hated each other ourageously; Ferdinandus Magellanus a Por- the first in spite lay with the tuguese, who in the year 1520 wife of Atreus, but he having first discovered them. Hume. gotten his brother's children in
687. - At that tasted fruit his power pretended a desire of
The sun, as from Thyestean banquet, turn'd
695 Of Norumbega, and the Samoed shore, Bursting their brazen dungeon, arm’d with ice And snow and hail and stormy gust and flaw,
reconciliation, and invited him rica. Samoieda, a province in to a banquet. Thyestes, that he the north-east of Muscovy, upon might see his children, dissem- the frozen sea. Hume. bling his augmented malice, 697. -arm’d with ice &c.] So came; the feast being over, his Claudian de Rapt. Pros. i. 69. brother let him know he had
-reu turbine rauco been entertained with the flesh
Cum gravis armatur Boreas, glacie. of his sons, and their blood
que nivali &c. mixed with the wine, and shewed
Richardson. him the sad proof of what he had told him, their heads and
698. --and stormy gust and hands, which he had reserved flaw] Gust and flaw seem to for that purpose. At this the be words much of the same imsun is said to have turned away, derived (as Junius says) from the
port, only flaw is the stronger, as Milton here says he did when the more dreadful banquet was
Greek praw, to break. Shake. made on the fruit of the forbid. speare uses both words in his den tree.
Venus and Adonis, Richardson. We may farther observe, that Like a red morn that ever yet be. it is called the Thyestean ban
token'd quet, though made not by him,
Gust and foul Naws to herdsmen and
to herds. but only for him: and Euripides in like manner calls it, dunyo 698. Flaw is a sea term for a utorov. Orest. 1010. and Horace sudden storm and gust of wind. cæna Thyeste. De Art. Poet. 91. In Shakespeare's Pericles, Prince and Mr. Pope would read here of Tyre, act iii. s. 1. Pericles in Thyestes'.
a storm at sea says, 696. Of Norumbega, and the Samoed shore) Norumbega, a
Courage enough; I do not fear the
flaw, province of the northern Ame It hath done to me the worst VOL. II.
Boreas and Cæcias and Argestes loud
And Hamlet, act v. s. 1.
ventus Lybicus, the south-west: Should patch a wall to expel the
Italian terms used by seamen of winter's flaw
the Mediterranean. Hume and
Dunster. Richardson. 699. Boreas] The north wind,
In this account of the winds is Cacias the north-west. Argestes
a needless ostentation of learnthe north-east. Thrascias blow- ing, and a strange mixture of ing from Thrace northward of ancient and modern Latin and Greece. Notus the south wind. Italian names together. These Afer or Africus, the south-west
are the foibles and weak parts from Africa,
of our author, and of these it
may too truly be said, Notusque ruunt creberque procellis Africus. Virg. Æn, i. 85. Such labour'd nothings, in so strange
a style, From Serraliona or Lion Moun
Amaze th' unlearn'd, and make the tains; a range of mountains so
learned smile. called because of the perpetua storms there roaring like a lion. 711. -to graze the herb all These are to the south-west of leaving, &c.] The word all here Africa, within a few leagues of makes strange sense of this pasCape Verd, the western point. sage, since according to common Eurus and Zephyr the east and construction it implies that beasts, west, called also Levant and Po- fowl, and fish, all grazed before nent winds, (rising and setting,) the fall, and immediately after the one blowing from whence it began all to prey upon each the sun rises, the other whence other, neither of which could
Sirocco ventus Syrus, possibly be Milton's meaning. the south-east ; and Libecchio How to restore the true reading I
Devour'd each other ; nor stood much in awe
do not pretend to determine, but And therefore according to this the following lines seem to con notion it may be said of fowl fine the devouring to the beasts, and fish as well as beasts; and might not therefore the
-to graze the herb all leaving, word those be substituted in the Devour'd each other place of all? Thyer.
But all here is not all and every Whether Milton's notion was one in particular, but only all in right or not is another question, general. Fowl prey upon fowl, but certainly it was his notion and fish upon fish, as much as that beast, fowl, and fish grazed beast upon beast. Beast, fowl, and the herb before the fall of the fish, all the three kinds, though beasts there can be no doubt; not all of the three kinds, devour and the fowl have the green herb each other. given them for meat as well as 713. or with countnance the beasts. Gen. i. 30. And lo grim every beast of the earth, and to
Glard on him passing.) every fowl of the air, I have given Palpably taken from Shakeevery green herb for meat. And speare, Julius Cæsar, act i. s. 4. the goose particularly is by the
-I met a lion poet who has best imitated Mil Who glar'd upon me, and went surly by, ton called close-grazer. Philips's Without annoying meCyder, b. i.
714. - These were from withOn the barren heath The shepherd tends his Aock, that
out &c.] The transition to Adam daily crop
here is very easy and natural, Their verdant dinner from the mossy and cannot fail of pleasing the turf
reader. We have seen great Sufficient ; after them the cackling alterations produced in nature,
goose, Close-grazer, finds wherewith to ease
and it is now time to see how her want.
Adam is affected with them, and
whether the disorders within are The greatest difficulty is with
not even worse than those without. regard to the fish, but of these
718. And in a troubled sea of Milton says expressly, vii. 404. that they
Thus to disburden sought with Graze the sea weed their pasture
Thus to disburden sought with sad complaint.
O miserable of happy! is this the end
A metaphor taken from a ship with such sentiments, as do not in a tempest, unlading, disburden only interest the reader in their ing to preserve itself from sink- afflictions, but raise in him the ing by its weight. Richardson. most melting passions of huma
The wicked ure like the trou. nity and commiseration. When bled sea, Isa, lvii. 20. Green Adam sees the several changes wood.
in nature produced about him, 720. O miserable of happy! he appears in a disorder of mind &c.] The parts of Adam and suitable to one who had forEve, or the human persons, come feited both his innocence and next under our consideration. his happiness; he is filled with Milton's art is no where more horror, remorse, despair; in the shown than in his conducting anguish of his heart he expostuthe parts of these our first pa- lates with his Creator for having rents. The representation he given him an unasked existence. gives of them, without falsifying
Did I request thee, Maker, from my the story, is wonderfully con
clay trived to influence the reader To muuld me Map ? &c. with pity and compassion to
He immediately after recovers wards them. Though Adam involves the whole species in mi
from his presumption, owns his
doom to be just, and begs that sery, his crime proceeds from a weakness which every man is him may be inflicted on him,
the death which is threatened inclined to pardon and commiserate, as it seems rather the
why delays frailty of human nature, than of
His hand to execute what his decree
Fix'd on this day ? &c. the person who offended. Every one is apt to excuse a fault which This whole speech is full of the he himself might have fallen like emotion, and varied with into. It was the excess of love all those sentiments which we for Eve that ruined Adam and may suppose natural to a mind his posterity. I need not add, so broken and disturbed. I that the author is justified in must not omit that generous this particular by many of the concern which our first father fathers, and the most orthodox shews in it for his posterity, and writers. Milton has by this which is so proper to affect the means filled a great part of his reader. Who can afterwards poem with that kind of writing behold the father of mankind which the French critics call the extended upon the earth, uttertender, and which is in a par- ing his midnight complaints. ticular manner engaging to all bewailing his existence, and sorts of readers. Adam and Eve, wishing for death, without symin the book we are now con- pathizing with him in his dissidering, are likewise drawn tress ? Addison.