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They view'd the vast immeasurable abyss,
"Outrageous as a sea-dark, wasteful, wild-
"Up from the bottom turn'd by furious winds,

"And surging waves as mountains, to assault 215 "Heaven's height, and with the centre mix the pole. "Silence, ye troubled waves, and thou, deep, peace!' "Said then the omnific Word; your discord end!" "Nor staid; but, on the wings of Cherubim



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Uplifted, in paternal glory rode

"Far into Chaos, and the world unborn;

"For Chaos heard his voice. Him all his train
"Follow'd in bright procession, to behold
"Creation, and the wonders of his might.
"Then staid the fervid wheels; and in his hand
"He took the golden compasses, prepar'd
"In God's eternal store, to circumscribe
"This universe, and all created things:
"One foot he centred, and the other turn'd
"Round through the vast profundity obscure;

230 "And said, 'Thus far extend—thus far thy bounds—
"This be thy just circumference, O world!'
"Thus God the heaven created; thus the earth—
"Matter unform'd and void: darkness profound
"Cover'd the abyss; but on the wat'ry calm


"His brooding wings the Spirit of God outspread,
"And vital virtue infus'd, and vital warmth,

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Throughout the fluid mass; but downward purg'd "The black, tartareous, cold, infernal dregs, "Adverse to life: then founded, then conglob'd 240"Like things to like; the rest to several place Disparted; and, between, spun out the air:


"And earth, self-balanc'd, on her centre hung.

"Let there be light!' said God: and forthwith light "Ethereal-first of things-quintessence pure,


245 Sprung from the deep; and from her native East "To journey through the aery gloom began,


Sphered in a radiant cloud; for yet the sun

"Was not; she in a cloudy tabernacle

Sojourn'd the while. God saw the light was good; 250 "And light from darkness by the hemisphere

"Divided: light the Day, and darksome Night,
"He nam'd. Thus was the First Day ev'n and morn;
"Nor past uncelebrated, nor unsung,

"By the celestial quires, when orient light 255 "Exhaling first from darkness they beheld— "Birth-day of heaven and earth! with joy, and shout, "The hollow universal orb they fill'd;

"And touch'd their golden harps, and hymning prais'd "God and his works; Creator him they sung,

260" Both when First Ev'ning was, and when First Morn. "Again, God said, 'Let there be firmament



"Amid the waters, and let it divide

"The waters from the waters;' and God made
“The firmament-expanse of liquid, pure,

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Transparent, elemental air, diffus'd

"In circuit to the uttermost convex

"Of this great round-partition firm and sure,
"The waters underneath from those above
"Dividing for as earth, so he the world
"Built on circumfluous waters calm, in wide
Crystalline ocean, and the loud misrule

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"Of Chaos far remov'd; lest fierce extremes "Contiguous might distemper the whole frame. "And heaven he nam'd the firmament; so ev'n 275 "And morning chorus sung the Second Day. "The earth was form'd, but in the womb as yet "Of waters, embryon immature, involv'd,




Appear'd not over all the face of earth
"Main ocean flow'd, not idle; but, with warm
"Prolific humour soft'ning all her globe,
"Fermented the great mother to conceive,
"Satiate with genial moisture: when God said,
"Be gather'd now, ye waters under heaven,
"Into one place, and let dry land appear.'


"Immediately the mountains huge appear
Emergent, and their broad bare backs upheave

"Into the clouds: their tops ascend the sky: "So high as heav'd the tumid hills, so low "Down sunk a hollow bottom, broad, and deep290 "Capacious bed of waters: thither they "Hasted with glad precipitance, uproll'd, "As drops on dust conglobing from the dry: "Part rise in crystal wall, or ridge direct,

"For haste; such flight the great command impress'd 295 "On the swift floods: as armies at the call


"Of trumpets (for of armies thou hast heard) "Troop to their standard; so the wat'ry throng, Wave rolling after wave, where way they found; "If steep, with torrent rapture; if through plain, "Soft ebbing; nor withstood them rock or hill; "But they, or under ground, or circuit wide "With serpent error wand'ring, found their way, "And on the washy ooze deep channels wore; (Easy, ere God had bid the ground be dry,) 305 "All, but within those banks, where rivers now Stream, and perpetual draw their humid train. "The dry land, earth, and the great receptacle "Of congregated waters, he called seas;


"And saw that it was good: and said, 'Let the earth 310"Put forth the verdant grass, herb yielding seed, "And fruit-tree yielding fruit after her kind, "Whose seed is in herself upon the earth!'


"He scarce had said, when the bare earth, till then "Desert, and bare, unsightly, unadorn'd,


Brought forth the tender grass, whose verdure clad "Her universal face with pleasant green;

"Then herbs of every leaf that sudden flower'd,
"Opening their various colours, and made gay

"Her bosom, smelling sweet: and, these scarce blown, 320" Forth flourish'd thick the clust'ring vine-forth crept "The swelling gourd-up stood the corny reed "Embattled in her field, and the humble shrub, "And bush with frizzled hair implicit : last, "Rose, as in dance, the stately trees, and spread


"Their branches hung with copious fruit, or gemm'd "Their blossoms: with high woods the hills were crown'd; "With tufts the valleys, and each fountain-side; "With borders long the rivers; that earth now "Seem'd like to heaven, a seat where gods might dwell, 330 "Or wander with delight, and love to haunt








"Her sacred shades. Though God had yet not rain'd
Upon the earth, and man to till the ground
"None was; but from the earth a dewy mist
"Went up, and water'd all the ground, and each
"Plant of the field, which, ere it was in the earth,
"God made, and every herb, before it grew
"On the green stem. God saw that it was good:
"So ev❜n and morn recorded the Third Day.



Again the Almighty spake: Let there be lights "High in the expanse of heaven, to divide "The day from night; and let them be for signs, "For seasons, and for days, and circling years; "And let them be for lights, as I ordain "Their office in the firmament of heaven, "To give light on the earth:' and it was so.

"And God made two great lights, (great, for their use "To man,) the greater to have rule by day,

"The less by night, altern; and made the stars,
"And set them in the firmament of heaven,
"To illuminate the earth, and rule the day
"In their vicissitude, and rule the night,
"And light from darkness to divide. God saw,
Surveying his great work, that it was good:
"For of celestial bodies first the sun,


"A mighty sphere he fram'd, unlightsome first,
"Though of ethereal mould; then form'd the moon.
"Globose, and every magnitude of stars;

"And sow'd with stars the heaven, thick as a field:
"Of light by far the greater part he took,


Transplanted from her cloudy shrine, and plac'd "In the sun's orb, made porous to receive

"And drink the liquid light; firm to retain

"Her gather'd beams-great palace now of light.
"Hither, as to their fountain, other stars
365"Repairing, in their golden urns draw light;

"And hence the morning planet gilds her horns:
"By tincture, or reflection, they augment

"Their small peculiar, though, from human sight
"So far remote, with diminution seen.

370"First in his East the glorious lamp was seen,
"Regent of day, and all the horizon round
"Invested with bright rays, jocund to run

"His longitude through heaven's high road; the gray "Dawn, and the Pleiades, before him danc'd, 375"Shedding sweet influence. Less bright the moon, "But opposite in levell'd West was set

"His mirror, with full face borrowing her light "From him; for other light she needed none "In that aspect; and still that distance keeps 380Till night; then in the East her turn she shines, "Revolv'd on heaven's great axle, and her reign "With thousand lesser lights dividual holds, "With thousand thousand stars, that then appear'd "Spangling the hemisphere-then first adorn'd 385"With their bright luminaries, that set and rose. "Glad ev'ning and glad morn crown'd the Fourth Day. "And God said, 'Let the waters generate Reptile with spawn abundant, living soul: "And let fowl fly above the earth, with wings Display'd on th' open firmament of heaven!' "And God created the great whales, and each "Soul living, each that crept, which plenteously "The waters generated by their kinds;


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"And every bird of wing after his kind;

395 "And saw that it was good, and bless'd them, saying, "Be fruitful, multiply; and, in the seas,


“And lakes, and running streams, the waters fill:
"And let the fowl be multiplied on the earth!'

"Forthwith the sounds and seas, each creek and bay,

"With fry innumerable swarm, and shoals


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