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Which when the Lord God heard, without delay
To judgment he proceeded on the accus'd
Serpent; though brute, unable to transfer
The guilt on him, who made him instrument
Of mischief, and polluted from the end
Of his creation; justly then accurs'd,
As vitiated in nature: (more to know
Concern'd not man, since he no further knew)
Nor alter'd his offence; yet God at last

To Satan, first in Sin, his doom applied,
Though in mysterious terms, judg'd as then best:
And on the serpent thus his curse let fall:

Because thou hast done this, thou art accurs'd
Above all cattle, each beast of the field;
Upon thy belly groveling thou shalt go,
And dust shalt eat all the days of thy life.
Between thee and the woman I will put
Enmity, and between thine and her seed;

Her seed shall bruise thy head, thou bruise his heel. » So spake this oracle, then verified

When Jesus, son of Mary, second Eve,

Saw Satan fall, like lightning, down from heaven,
Prince of the air; then, rising from his grave,
Spoil'd principalities and powers, triumph'd
In open show; and, with ascension bright,
Captivity led captive through the air,
The realm itself of Satan, long usurp'd;
Whom he shall tread at last under our feet;
Ev'n he, who now foretold his fatal bruise;
And to the woman thus his sentence turn'd:
Thy sorrow I will greatly multiply

By thy conception; children thou shalt bring


Ciò udito Iddio Signore, senza indugio
A dar sentenza ei procedè sul reo
Serpente; benchè bruto, a trar non atto
Colpa su lui che fecelo stromento

Di misfare e corruppel dal suo fine
Natio; fu a dritto maladetto allora
Qual guasto in sua natura: (il più sapere
Vano era all' uom dell' altre cose ignaro)
Nè il fallo gli scemava; alfine Iddio

Al primo reo Satan lanciò condanna
Benchè in arcano dir, qual me' gli piacque,
E si scagliò il suo maledire al serpe:

« Poichè tu festi ciò, sei maladetto
Su tutte belve ed animai del campo,
Sul petto tuo ti striscerai tu, e terra
Ciberai tutti i di della tua vita.

Inimistà porrò fra te e la donna,

Fra il tuo e il suo seme; schiaccerà il tuo capo Ella e farai tu insidie al suo calcagno.

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L'oracol si parlò, compiuto quando
Gesù di Maria figlio, altra Eva, vide
Qual folgore dal ciel tomar Satano
Prence dell' aria; e da sua tomba surto
Spogliati regi e posse, in magna pompa
Trionfo e con chiaro ascenso in l'aere
Captivitade trascinò captiva,
Regno usurpato a lungo da Satano.
Alfine ei fia dal nostro piè calpesto,
Per lui che il danno or suo fatal predisse;
Quindi alla donna proferi sentenza:

«Di molto io crescerò gli affanni tuoi Ne' tuoi concetti; nel dolore i figli

In sorrow forth; and to thy husband's will
Thine shall submit; he over thee shall rule. »

On Adam last thus judgment he pronounc'd:
«Because thou hast hearken'd to the voice of thy wife,
And eaten of the tree, concerning which
I charg'd thee, saying, thou shalt not eat thereof;
Curs'd is the ground for thy sake; thou in sorrow
Shalt eat thereof, all the days of thy life;
Thorns also and thistles it shall bring thee forth
Unbid; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field;
In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,
Till thou return unto the ground; for thou
Out of the ground wast taken, (know thy birth,)
For dust thou art, and shalt to dust return. »

So judg'd he man, both judge and saviour sent;
And the instant stroke of death, denounc'd that day,
Remov'd far off: then pitying how they stood
Before him naked to the air, that now
Must suffer change, disdain'd not to begin
Thenceforth the form of servant to assume;
As when he wash'd his servants' feet; so now,
As father of his family, he clad

Their nakedness with skins of beasts, or slain,
Or, as, the snake, with youthful coat repaid;
And thought not much to clothe his enemies;
Nor he their outward only with the skins
Of beasts, but inward nakedness (much more
Opprobrious) with his robe of righteousness
Arraying, cover'd from his Father's sight.
To him with swift ascent he up return'd,
Into his blissful bosom reassum'd

In glory, as of old; to him appeas'd,

Partorirai; e di tuo consorte al cenno
Serva starai; di te egli fia signore.
Sentenza alfin si pronunciò in Adamo:
«Perchè la voce udisti di tua donna,
E gustasti dell' arbor ch' io vietai
Dicendo, tu non dei cibar di questo;
Maledetta è la terra in l'opra tua;
Fra stenti vi trarrai tua vita intera;
Triboli pur germineratti e spine
Spontanea; e l'erba ciberai del campo;
Nel sudor di tua fronte il pane avrai,
Finchè ritorni in terra; chè fuor tratto
Di terra fosti, (origin tua conosci)
Chè tu se' polve, e fia che torni in polve. »>
Si l'uom, Giudice e Salvator mandato
Condannò, e morte istante in prima inditta
Allontano poscia pietoso ad elli

Che ignudi innanzi a lui si stanno e all'aere
Già già alterato, fin d' allor la forma
Non isdegnò pigliar di servo; e come
Poscia ei lavò a suoi servi i piè; così ora
Lor nudità, qual padre a figli suoi,
Con pelli ricoprì di belve estinte,

O rifatte, come angue, in giovin spoglio;
Anzi degnò vestire i suoi nemici;

Nè sol l' esterne qualità con pelli
Di belve, ma lor nuditàde interna
Più sozza,
di giustizia col suo manto
Velando, al guardo di suo padre ascose.
Con rapido salir su a lui tornossi,
Nel suo beante sen riassunto in gloria
Come dapprima; a lui placato il tutto

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All (though all knowing) what had pass'd with man
Recounted, mixing intercession sweet.

Meanwhile, ere thus was sinn'd and judg'd on earth,
Within the gates of hell sat Sin and Death,
In counterview within the gates, that now
Stood open wide, belching outrageous flame
Far into chaos, since the fiend pass'd through,
Sin opening; who thus now to Death began:

O Son! why sit we here, each other viewing
Idly, while Satan, our great author, thrives
In other worlds, and happier seat provides
For us, his offspring dear? it cannot be
But that success attends him; if mishap,
Ere this he had return'd, with fury driven
By his avengers, since to place like this
Can fit his punishment, or their revenge.
Methinks I feel new strength within me rise,
Wings growing, and dominions given me large
Beyond this deep, whatever draws me on,
Or sympathy, or some connatural force,
Powerful at greatest distance to unite,
With secret amity, things of like kind,
By secretest conveyance. Thou, my shade
Inseparable, must with me along :
For death from sin no power can separate
But, lest the difficulty of passing back
Stay his return perhaps over this gulf
Impassable, impervious; les us try,
(Adventurous work! yet to thy power and mine
Not unagreeable,) to found a path

Over this main, from hell to that new world
Where Satan now prevails: a monument

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