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Round through the vast profundity obscure,
And said, Thus far extend, thus far thy bounds, 230
Thus be thy just circumference, O World.
Thus God the Heav'n created, thus the Earth,
Matter unform’d and void : Darkness profound
Cover'd th' abyss : but on the wat'ry calm
His brooding wings the Spi'rit of God outspread,
And vital virtue' infus'd, and vital warmth
Throughout the fluid mass, but downward purg'd
The black tartareous cold infernal dregs
Adverse to life: then founded, then conglob'd
Like things to like, the rest to several place 240
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,
Sprung from the deep, and from her native east
To journey through the airy gloom began,
Spher'd 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;
And light from darkness by the hemisphere 250
Divided : light the day, and darkness night
He nam'd. Thus was the first day ev'n and morn:
Nor pass'd uncelebrated, nor unsung
By the celestial quires, when orient light
Exhaling first from darkness they beheld ;
Birth-day of Heav'n and Earth; with joy and shout
The hollow universal orb they fill'd,
And touch'd their golden harps, and hymping prais'd
God and his works, Creator him they surg,
Both when first evening was, and when first mon,

Again, God said, Let there be firmanient :61
Amid the waters, and let it divide
The waters from the waters: and God made
The firmament, expanse of liquid, pure,
Transparent, elemental air, diffus'd
In circuit to the utiermost convex
Of this great round : partition form and sure,
The waters underneath from those above
Dividing : for as Earth, so he the world
Built on circumfluous waters calm, in wide 270
Crystalline ocean, and the loud misrule
Of Chaos far remov’d, lest fierce extremes
Contiguous might distemper the whole frame:
And Heay'n he nam'd the firinament: So even
And morning chorus sung the second day.

The earth was form’d, but in the womb as yet Of waters, embryon immature involvid, Appear'd not : over all the face of earth Main ocean flow'd, not idle, but with warm Prolific humor soft'ning all her globe, 980 Fermented the great mother to conceive, Satiate with genial moisturc, when God said Be gather'd now, ye waters, under Heav'n 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 bollow bottom broad and deep,
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 hasic; such flight the great command impress'd
On the swift floods: as armies at the call
Of trumpet (for of armies thou hast heard)
Troqp to their standard, so the wat’ry throng,
Ware rolling after wave, where wave they found,
If steep, with torrent rapture, if through plain,
Soft ebbing; nor withstood them rock or hill, 300
But they, or underground, 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,
All but within those banks, where rivers now
Stream and perpetual draw their humid train.
The dry land earth, and ihe great receptacle
Of congregated waters he callid Seas:
And saw that it was good, and said, Let th’ Earth
Put forth the verdant grass, herb yielding seed, 310
And fruit-trce 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 flow'rd
Opening their various colors, and made gay

Her bosom smelling sweet: and these scarce blown,
Forth flourish'd thrick the clust'ring vine, forth crepe
The smelling gourd, up stood the corny reed 321
Embattled in her field, and th' 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

With tufts the valleys, and each fountain side,
With borders long the rivers: that earth now
Seem'd like to Heav'ni,a seat where Gods might dwell,
Or wander with delight, and love to haunt

330 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 th' 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 th' Almighty spake, Let there be lights High in th' expanse of Heav’n, 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 Heav'n 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 Heav'n
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 Heav'n thick as a field;
Of light by far the greater part he took,
Transplanted from her cloudy shrine, and plac'd 360
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
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.
First in his East the glorious lamp was seen, 370
Regent of day, and all th' horizon around
Invested with bright rays, jocund to run
His longitude through Heav'n's high road; the grey
Dawn and the Pleiades before him danc'd
Shedding sweet influence : less bright the moon,
But opposite in levelld West was set
His mirror, with full face borrowing her light

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