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Russet lawns and fallows gray,
Where the nibbling flocks do stray,
Mountains on whose barren breast
The laboring clouds do often rest,
Meadows trim with daisies pied,
Shallow brooks, and rivers wide.
Towers and battlements it sees
Bosomed 3 high in tufted trees,
Where perhaps some beauty lies,
The cynosure 5 of neighboring eyes.
Hard by, a cottage chimney smokes
From betwixt two agéd oaks,
Where Corydon and Thyrsis 6 met
Are at their savory dinner set
Of herbs and other country messes,
Which the neat-handed Phyllis dresses;
And then in haste her bower 8 she leaves,
With Thestylis to bind the sheaves,
Or, if the earlier season lead,
To the tanned haycock in the mead.

Sometimes with secure 9 delight
The upland hamlets will invite,
When the merry bells ring round,


1 fallows. Meaning ? Gray peasants the names of Virgilian here means light brown.

swains and shepherdesses. “Cory2 pied, of varied color.

don,” “Thyrsis," "Phyllis,” “Thes3 Bosomed. What is the exact | tylis,” occur in the idyls of Virgi! meaning of this word here? and other Latin poets. 4 lies, resides, dwells.

messes, different kinds of food cynosure, a center of attraction. served up at table. For its derivation, see Glossary. 8 bower, apartment.

0 Corydon and Thyrsis. Mil secure, void of care. See Gloston's classical fancy gives to English | sary.




And the jocund rebecs 1 sound
To many a youth and many a maid,
Dancing in the checkered shade;
And young and old come forth to play
On a sunshine holiday,
Till the livelong daylight fail;
Then to the spicy nut-brown ale,2
With stories told of many a feat:
How fairy Mab 3 the junkets 4 eat;
She was pinched and pulled, she said;
And he, by friar's lantern led;
Tells? how the drudging goblin 8 sweat
To earn his cream-bowl duly set,
When in one night, ere glimpse of morn,
His shadowy flail hath threshed the corn
That ten day-laborers could not end;
Then lies him down the lubbar' fiend,
And, stretched out all the chimney's 10 length,
Basks at the fire his hairy strength;
And crop-full 11 out of doors he flings, 12

1 rebec, a fiddle of three strings. 7 Tells. Supply he as subject.

2 spicy nut-brown ale (the same 8 the drudging goblin is the as Shakespeare's "gossips' bowl"'), Robin Goodfellow of British folka beverage consisting of ale, nut- lore, a “servant spirit that would meg, sugar, toast, and the pulp of grind corn for a mess of milk, cut roasted apples.

wood, or do any kind of drudgery 3 Mab, the queen of the fairies. work."

4 junkets, cream-cheese, and 9 lubbar=lubber, clumsy, awkother dainties.

ward. 5 She ... he, some of the story 10 chimney, fireplace, very ample tellers.

in the olden times. 6 friar's lantern, meaning the 11 crop-full, stomach-full. sprite known as Jack-o'-the-lan 12 flings, throws himself, rushes tern, or Will-o'-the-wisp.

(a classical construction).

Ere the first cock his matin rings.
Thus done the tales, to bed they creep,
By whispering winds soon lulled asleep.
Towered cities please us then,
And the busy hum of men,
Where throng of knights and barons bold,
In weeds? of peace, high triumphs: hold,
With store of ladies, whose bright eyes
Rain influence, and judge the prize
Of wit or arms, while both contend
To win her grace whom all commend.
There let Hymen 6 oft appear
In saffron robe, with taper clear,
And pomp, and feast, and revelry,
With mask and antique pageantry;
Such sights as youthful poets dream
On summer eves by haunted stream.
Then to the well-trod stage anon,
If Jonson's learned sock be on,


1 his matin rings. Explain.

pomp, feast, ... revelry, 2 weeds, garments. See Glossary. mask, pageantry, were

8 triumphs, tournaments, and various forms of entertainment other public pageants.

highly popular in the early part 4 influence. “Here used in its of the seventeenth century. They original sense of the rays, glances, were all the rage at court. Milton or aspects flowing from the stars to himself wrote a “ mask" called the earth. These aspects were be- Comus. lieved to have a great and myste- 7 If Jonson's ...on; that is, if rious power over the fortunes of one of the comedies of the learned

Ben Jonson were performing. The 6 Hymen, the god of marriage,

was a low-heeled light shoe who, in the old plays, was repre- worn by actors of comedy, and sented as clothed in a saffron-col- by a figure of speech came to mean ored robe.

comedy itself.






Or sweetest Shakespeare, Fancy's child,
Warble his native wood-notes wild.
And ever, against eating cares,
Lap me in soft Lydian 1 airs,
Married to immortal verse
Such as the meeting soul may pierce
In notes with many a winding bout 3
Of linkéd sweetness long drawn out
With wanton heed, and giddy cunning,4
The melting voice through mazes running,
Untwisting all the chains that tie
The hidden soul of harmony;
That Orpheus's self may heave his head
From golden slumber on a bed
Of heaped Elysian flowers, and hear
Such strains as would have won the ear
Of Pluto to have quite set free
His half-regained Eurydice."
These delights if thou canst give,
Mirth, with thee I mean to live.

1 Lydian, denoting an ancient and wondrous “cunning” that but Greek mode of music remarkable appears “giddy.” for its tender softness.

5 Orpheus' ... Euryd'ice. Or2 Married ... verse. Explain. pheus, son of Apollo, who, with 3 bout, niusical passage.

the music of his lyre, had the power 4 wanton

cunning. There to move inanimate objects. His is an apparent contradiction be- wife Eurydice having died, he foltween wanton (free, sportive) lowed her into the infernal region, and “heed;" 'giddy” and “cun- where the god Pluto was so moved ning" (skill); but the meaning is by the music, that Orpheus almost a “heed” (that is, à care, an art) succeeded in carrying her back to that only seems to be “wanton,” | earth.


[The following two hundred and eighty-six lines are from the First Book of Paradise Lost, and come almost immediately after the opening, or invocation,

“Of man's first disobedience, and the fruit
Of that forbidden tree, whose mortal taste
Brought death into the world, and all our woe,
With loss of Eden, .
Sing, heavenly Muse,” etc.

The inquiry is then put, as to what moved our first parents to disobey; and answer is made, that it was the seductions of “the serpent, or, rather, Satan in the person of the serpent,” — Satan, whose pride had caused him to be cast out of heaven, with all his rebel angels. Then follow the magnificent speeches in which the interlocutors are the “arch-enemy” Satan, and his “bold compeer” Beelzebub.]

Him the Almighty Power
Hurled headlong flaming from the ethereal sky,
With hideous ruin and combustion, down
To bottomless perdition; there to dwell
In adamantine 2 chains and penal 3 fire,
Who durst 4 defy the Omnipotent to arms.5

Nine times the space that measures day and night
To mortal men, he with his horrid crew
Lay vanquished, rolling in the fiery gulf,
Confounded, though immortal. But his doom
Reserved him to more wrath; for now the thought
Both of lost happiness and lasting pain,

1 Him; i.e., Satan.

3 penal. See Glossary. 2 adamantine. "Adamant” is, 4 durst=dared. literally, the unconquerable, usu- 5 Who ... arms. To what proally applied to the hardest metal; noun is this adjective clause an “adamantine,” not to be broken. adjunct?

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