Psyche. Canto XVIII. The Poyson.

Psyche: or Loves Mysterie. In XX. Canto's: displaying the Intercourse betwixt Christ, and the Soule. By Joseph Beaumont, Mr. in Arts and ejected Fellow of S. Peters College in Cambridge.

Rev. Joseph Beaumont

After delivering an elegy on his wife, Joseph Beaumont describes the Den of Heresy in a passage modeled on Spenser's Cave of Error in the first book of the Faerie Queene. Misled by her reason, Psyche must be rescued by her instructor Phylax; the ensuing catalogue of heresies is truly impressive.

Herbert E. Cory: "It seems quite reasonable for Phylax to have supposed that, after his extraordinary biography of Christ, intellectual exhaustion alone would have so completely subdued Psyche's moods for unhealthy explorations that she would present in effect an adamantine front to sin. But as soon as he leaves her the busy devil seeks out 'a special Fury's den' and despatches the monster against his victim. In short, Psyche is tempted by Heresy and is won over. But Phylax once more intervenes and takes her to her new-found Doctor's tower, to the birthplace of Heretick Sin, where they find 'Swarms of Doors and Cells and Galleries, | Which by quaint Turnings to and fro did wind.' They come to a room where 'A goodly Crucifix was there displaid, | Altars were rear'd and reverend Bibles ope'.... But at the entrance of Phylax all the falsity becomes apparent. 'Glazing Deceits and handsome Lyes stood there, | With gentle meek demure Hypocrisy, | All which in goodly state attended were | By treacherous Rhetorick and Phylosophy'.... No doubt the unruly Psyche needed even more persuasion than could come from the disconcerting spectacle of syllogisms in human semblance. So she was shown a long procession of the heretical sects of all ages pressing downward to Death's living fountains" "Spenser, the Fletchers, and Milton" UCPMP 2 (1912) 338-39.

The rankling Bane of Error on the heart
Of heedless Psyche greater strength doth get:
Fond Logos plyeth his capricious part,
And slie Agyrtes works the deadly Feat.
Phylax returns, and in his Pupil's eye
Rakes up the nasty Sink of Heresy.

No more did wretched I; who lately thought
My self pitch'd safe on Happiness's throne:
Ah slippery Throne! how sadly hast thou taught
My credulous Joys no more to build upon
A mortal bottom, nor my Solace trust
On what so soon falls into mouldring Dust.

O where shall I my just Complaint begin,
Which must no Ending know! How am I lost
In Sorrow's Maze! fain would my mourning Pen
Vie with mine Eyes, and drop my Grief as fast;
Fain would my Muse, to complement my Smart,
Indite the funeral Elegy of my Heart.

But by the Ruins of my high Delight
Such vast Confusion overwhelms my Mind,
That it can prompt me nothing now to write
But meer Perplexity. Thy pardon, kind
Reader, thy pardon then: since 'tis not I
Abuse thy patience, but Necessity.

I am not I; O no, my I is gone,
That precious Self who mighty value gave
To worthless Me. What 'tis to be Undone
None more profoundly knows than I, who live
Torn and in sunder cleft, whilst lost I see
That Half which was more than the Whole to me.

Sweet Soul how goodly was the Temple which
Heav'n pleas'd to make thy earthly Habitation!
Built all of graceful Delicacy, rich
In Symmetry; and of a dangerous fashion
For youthful eyes, had not the Saint within
Govern'd the Charms of her inamoring Shrine.

How happily compendious didst Thou make
My study when I was the Lines to draw
Of genuine Beauty! never put to take
Long journies was my fancy; still I saw
At home my Copy, and I knew 'twould be
But Beauty's wrong further to seek than Thee.

Full little knew the World (for I as yet
In studied silence hugg'd my secret Bliss,)
How facil was my Muse's task, when set
Virtue's and Grace's features to express!
For whilst accomplish'd Thou wert in my sight
I nothing had to do, but Look and Write.

How sadly parted are those words; since I
Must now be Writing, but no more can Look!
Yet in my Heart thy precious Memory
So deep is grav'd, that from this faithful Book
Truly transcrib'd, thy Character shall shine;
Nor shall thy Death devour what was divine.

Hear then, O all soft-hearted Turtles, hear
What you alone profoundly will resent:
A Bird of your pure feather 'tis, whom here
Her desolate Mate remaineth to lament,
Whilst She is flown to meet her dearer Love,
And sing among the winged Quire above.

Twelve times the glorious Sovereign of Day
Had made his progress, and in every Inn
Whose golden Signs through all his radiant way
So high are hung, as often lodged been;
Since in the sacred Knot this noble She
Deign'd to be ty'd to (then how happy) me.

Ty'd, ty'd we were so intimately, that
We strait were sweetly lost in one another.
Thus when two Notes in Musick's wedlock knit
They in one Concord blended are together:
For nothing now our life but musick was,
Her Soul the Treble made, and mine, the Base.

How at the needless Question would she smile
When ask'd, what she desir'd or counted fit?
Still bidding me examine mine own will,
And read the surest answer ready writ.
So center'd was her heart in mine, that She
Would own no wish if first not wish'd by Me.

Delight was no such thing to her; if I
Relish'd it not: the Palate of her Pleasure
Carefully watch'd what mine could taste, and by
That standard her content resolv'd to measure.
By this rare art of sweetness did she prove
That though she joy'd, yet all her Joy was Love.

So was her Grief: for wrong'd her self she held
If I were sad alone; her share, alas,
And more than so, in all my Sorrow's field
She duly reap'd: and here alone she was
Unjust to me. Ah dear injustice, which
Mak'st me complain That I was lov'd too much!

Yet tenderest she, was no less stiff and stout
In Virtue's service: from our nuptial Bed
A lovely flower no sooner peeped out,
But it into the grave withdrew its head.
And let it go; the Method's just, cry'd She,
My firstfruits are for Heav'n and not for Me.

A second sprouted then; who for a while
Flatter'd our Joys; but withering in his bud,
Did only them the deeplyer beguile.
When lo, my valiant Dear discretely shed
Such moderate Tears as testify'd that she
Would Mother here and yet not Woman be.

To loose the fruit, said she, shall not dismay
My heart, so long as it enjoys the Tree.
I am content the streams should slip away,
Since still the Spring, the Spring, remains with me;
Whilst I th' Original at large possess,
Of two small Copies little is the loss.

What wonder now that Heav'n was pleased this
Twice-tryed Patience doubly to requite;
And for one Pair it snatch'd away, to bliss
Her afterward with two, on whom she might
Transcribe her virtuous self, and make them be
Her Soul's as well's her Body's Progeny.

And to this welcome task betimes she fell,
Moulding the soft and tender Wax; on which
Of Discipline she claps the early seal,
That it not Art might seem, but Nature: such
Was her Indulgencie's sagacity
That on the future still she kept her Eye.

Her tender Twigs, whilst fitted any way
To bend, she wisely banded to the best
And this was Upward, that thus thriving They
Might grow to Heav'n. How oh has she profest
'Twas not th' ambition of her prime endeavour
To have them live, but have them live for ever.

Nor could her Servants scape her pious care,
Whom she more truly serv'd than they did Her,
Watching to keep them in religious fear
And in the bounds of sober Order: for
Unless their God they learn to serve, said she,
How can they faithful service do to me?

But o'r her self her watch was most severe,
Jealous of nothing more than of her heart.
Her richest Virtues, which admired were
By others' eyes, her own suspected: Art,
Art still she fear'd, and right profoundly wise
Judg'd artificial Virtue real Vice.

And this such deep and bitter quarrels bred
Between her Soul and Her, that often I
Ran in to part the fray, and help her read
The Error of her Zeal: and though she by
Mine eyes resolved were to see, yet ne'r
So lothly kept She that resolve as here.

For in her self meek She so much below
Her self was sunk, that all her high Deserts
From her own prospect vanished, and though
Those Graces which imbellish'd others' hearts
Were to her reverent observation known,
Her own were not, because they were her own.

To Heav'nward open'd She her morning eyes,
And darted her Devotion's preface thither:
Before she rose, thus did she duly rise
And then get up, and call'd her thoughts together,
Her Matin's sacrifice to kindle for
All Offrings but by fire did she abhor.

Then for her morning's Draught, unto the spring
Of life and bliss, the Book of books, she flew;
Which her with various Nectar furnishing,
Sometimes she quaff'd the Old, sometimes the New:
And knew both Tastes so fully, that 'twas clear
The New at length was not the New to her.

All David fairly she transcribed on
The tables of her faithful Memory;
There likewise wrote she Soul-inamoring John;
Nor e'r was more exact Orthography.
That from Love's Laws her Soul might never start,
She thus had Piety it self by heart.

But that her time might in the Chanel run
Of pure Devotion, she for every day
Cut out her holy work, by which alone
She knew how Weeks both came and went away,
Right Christian Account, which thus could make
Her dearest Jesus be her Almanack.

For by the Wonders of His Love did she
Distinguish all the Week: She first descended
With Him from Heav'n, and His Humility
Traced to Bethlehem; where she attended
His simple Cratch, and learn'd those Pomps to scorn
In which true Glory's Prince would not be born.

The next Day led her to that Desert where
Grapling with Hunger and with Satan, she
Beheld her Lord. The Third invited her
To meditate His scorn and Injury
When by His Scholar at a sordid price
Sold and betray'd to bloody Enemies.

Her thoughts were highly entertained by
The fourth at that dear Board of purest Bliss,
Which Jesus furnish'd with the Mystery
Of His own Blood's and Bodie's Sacrifice.
Deep in her heart, upon the fifth she strove
To print the sacred Wounds and Death of Love.

The Sixth, as duly found her at His Grave
Embalming Him with sweet Devotion's spice.
But on the Seventh, His Resurrection gave
Her cheerlyest Contemplation leave to rise;
Nor could the Clouds convey Him from its view,
For after His Ascension too she flew.

And by this bless'd hebdomadary Round
(The Heav'nly Orb which she on Earth contriv'd)
Weaned from our Worldly motions, she found
Her circled self in solid Rest, and liv'd
Above that Cheat which makes fond Mortals prize
For true Content, heart-vexing Vanities.

Her Soul resolv'd to keep its home within,
And not dwell fluttering in her outward Tire
Her Rule was, what was fit, not, what was fine;
Not to be sold, but cloth'd, was her desire.
Miscall it not; it is, said she to me
No Suit, unless it suits with my Degree.

Preposterousness she counted it, to wear
Her purse upon her back: yet with no less
Abhorrence look'd she on that sordid Care
Which blush'd not to appear in open Dress.
Right prudently she cut her way between,
Approving nothing Golden, but the mean.

She ne'r took post to keep an equal pace
Still with the newest Modes, which swiftly run:
She never was perplex'd to hear her Lace
Accus'd for six months old, when first put on:
She laid no watchful Leigers, costly-vain
Intelligence with fashions to maintain.

On a Pin's point she ne'r held consultation,
Nor at her Glass's strict tribunal brought
Each Pleit to scrupulous examination:
Asham'd she was that Titan's coach about
Half Heav'n should sooner wheel, than she could pass
Through all the petty stages of her Dress.

No gadding Itch e'r spurr'd her to delight
In needless Sallies; none but civil care
Of friendly correspondence could invite
Her out of doors; unless she pointed were
By Visitations from Heav'n's hand, where she
Might make her own in tender sympathy.

Abroad, she counted but her Prison: Home,
Home was the region of her Liberty.
Abroad Diversion throng'd, and left no room
For Zeal's set task, and virtue's bus'ness free:
Home was her less incumbred Scene, though there
Angels and God she knew Spectators were.

Yet this Retirement's cloud ne'r overcast
Those beams of leggiadrous Courtesy
Which smil'd in her Deportment; and exprest
Full confutation of their Calumny.
Who lumpish, sullen, and the source of all
Affected Soureness, strict Devotion call.

Nor was this sweetness partial, and design'd
In complemental Gracefulness to vy
But full as facil to the plainest Hind
As to the courtlyest Gallant: Poverty
She ne'r could count a reason of neglect,
Who did so oft on Bethlehem Cratch reflect.

This made her trade with such sincere delight
In frequent Alms: her self she satisfy'd
When she the Needy fill'd; and that she might
As ready be as was their want, she ty'd
Her self to spare a weekly sum, and be
Provided of a Bank of Charity.

Nor did her sympathetick Soul with less
Tenderness yearn the publick Woes to see,
When bolster'd up with long-abus'd Success
Sedition, Rapin, Murder, Perjury,
Schism, Heresy, Rebellion, Usurpation
Reign'd on the stage of this distracted Nation.

But when the monstrous Tempest tam'd she saw
To Peace's Calm; when glorious Charles ascended
His rightful throne, restoring both the Law
Of Earth and Heav'n; when Truth no more was branded
For Superstition; when the Church had to
The Temple liberty again to go:

Such was her Joy, as if the total Bliss
Had been her own: for by the common Good
On her Particular she set the price;
And not contented with the vulgar Mode,
Besides what flaming at her gate she had
True Triumph's Bonfire in her heart she made.

Yet sadly cool'd that Fervor was, when she
Observ'd how those who deeplyest were ingaged
To flie the Crimes whose importunity
Had lately Vengeance rous'd, and Heav'n enraged
Back to their Vomit tumid, as if their Peace
Had only come to let them Sin at ease.

How did she sigh! to see fantastick Pride,
Restless Ambition, studied Luxury,
All in a fresh carreer eagerly ride;
Forgeting quite that injur'd Lenity
To Fury boils; that Justice, when constrain'd
New Covenants and new Presbiters can find.

Oft did she chew this heavy Meditation,
Crying, Are these the thanks and praise we pay
To Him who from the jaws of Desolation
Snatch'd us! did He the Rebels' powers destroy
To make free room for our Contempt to swell
And shamelessly against Himself rebel!

This wean'd her weary heart from things below
And kindled it with strong desire to gain
Her Hopes' high Aim. Life could no longer now
Flatter her love, or make her prayers refrain
From begging (yet with humble resignation)
To be dismissed from her mortal station.

Long in this earnest fervour did she fry,
Until a Fever's mighty flame begun
To cool it, and incourage her with high
Expectance that she had not far to run
Before her tedious Race would ended
In never-ending Rest's felicity.

O how she welcomed her courteous Pain,
And languished with most serene Content!
No Paroxysms could make her once complain
Nor suffer'd she her Patience to be spent
Before her Life; contriving thus to yield
To her disease, and yet not loose the field.

This trying furnace wasted day by day
(What she her self had always counted Dross,)
Her mortal Mansion, which so ruin'd lay
That of the goodly fabrick nothing was
Remaining now but skin and bone; refin'd
Together were her Body and her Mind.

At length the final hour (sad hour to me!)
Releas'd the longing Soul: no Ejulation
Tolled her knell; no dying Agony
Frown'd in her death; but in that lamb-like fashion
In which she livid (O righteous Heav'n, said I
Who clos'd her dear eyes,) she had leave to die.

She dy'd; but to that Life's possession flew
In hopes of which alone before she lived.
Alas, I only perish'd, who in shew
Was left alive; and she who dy'd, survived
None, none this woful Riddle feels but I,
Hers was the Death, but mine the Tragedy.

O ever-precious Soul, yet shall that flight
Of thine, not snatch thee from thy wonted Nest:
Here shalt thou dwell, here shalt thou live in spight
Of any death, here in this faithful Breast.
Unworthy 'tis, I know, by being Mine;
Yet nothing less, since long it has been Thine.

Accept thy dearer Pourtraiture, which I
Have on my other Psyche fixed here;
Since her ideal Beauties signify
The truth of thine: as for her spots, they are
Thy useful foil, and shall inservient be
But to inhance and more illustrate Thee.

PSEUDAGIUS, whose fairfaced Piety
Possession of the Virgin's heart had won,
Now fully feasts his hungry Tyranny
Upon his tender yielding Prey; and soon
Instils his Poisons with such holy art
That their contagion rul'd in every part.

Both in the Suburbs of her Soul, and in
The Capitol she found it domineer;
And quickly grown completely Nazaren,
She fondly joy'd that slavish yoke to wear;
Esteeming it to be his gentle Lore
Whom as her only Lord she did adore.

Satan, who lurk'd in ambush to espy
His slie resigns' effect; triumph'd to see
That Psyche by this moderate Heresy
Was so extreamly charm'd: for crafty He
When but a little Leven had crept in,
The whole Lump's body oft had tainted seen.

He knew a petty Gap might quickly turn
A mighty Chasme: he knew one Spark might thrive
Into a fulgrown Flame, and serve to burn
The strongest Fort: he knew one Wheel might drive
A thousand more: he knew a careless Slip
Might cause a Fall, as well's a wilful Skip.

He knew that they who once a foot had set
In Error's labyrinth, would easily be
Allured further to proceed in it
By their own tickling Curiosity;
And having turn'd from Truth's meridian light,
Might soon inamored be of blackest Night.

Yet to secure his Plot, he Logos fill'd
With greater Pride and Confidence, since he
Saw Thelema and Psyche forc'd to yield
At last, to what he did at first agree;
And they abashed with unhappy shame
His domineering carriage durst not blame.

By this unbrideled Impudence he grew
So vainly bigger than himself, that he
Presum'd far more than all the World he knew
In Truth's judicious discovery.
Thus foolish Dreamers think they view the skies
When dusky Sleep has sealed up their eyes.

O miserable Soul, whose Blindness is
The argument by which she thinks her Sight
Acute and pure! who, 'cause she once did miss,
Her way, is confident of going right!
Who on her Fall doth build her Arrogance,
And counts her Knowledge by her Ignorance.

For when the Morn call'd early psyche out,
And led her to the sacred Sepulchre;
Full in her way the watchful Tempter brought
One who no common Mortal's aspect wore:
Grave was his garb, but graver far his look:
And him for some deep-learned Man she took.

Capricious Logos could not rest content
Till he had sounded what the Man could say:
Big with a spruce and eloquent Complement,
He brings it forth and strews it in his way,
And bowed to the ground with it: which done.
Agyrtes stay'd, and Logos thus went on:

Sir, if your Soul be to your Body true
It must be Science's vast Treasury;
And those spiritual Riches never knew
What Loss or Diminution meant, when by
Ingenuous Impartment they were sown
In other's breasts, yet not plucked from their own.

For though his radiant Largise on the Moon,
And every Star, and all the World besides
He poureth out; yet still the copious Sun
On in his undiminish'd Glory rides.
Though thousand Brooks it grudges not to fill.
The teeming Fountain lives in fulness still.

A portion of your Streams, and of your Light,
Which by this spending are the more to you
Increas'd, is that we beg: Our stupid Night
To knowing Day may by your Influence grow:
Our arid barren Intellect may be
By your Effusions taught Fertility.

That natural Desire which did inflame
Your Industry to reach at Knowledge, is
Common to Us; nor will your Wisdom blame
Our free and bold Obedience to this
Potent Instinct, by following which have You
Attain'd that Blessing which we sue for now.

So Logos spake; and bowing down again
Press'd his Petition by his fauning gesture:
Nor could his ceremonious Lips refrain
But kiss'd the margin of the Stranger's vesture;
Thus craving with his closed mouth, and wooing
With all his courtlyest Art his own Undoing.

When by a gravely graceful Pause the Man
More reverence had won, with friendly eye
He first their Welcome look'd; then thus began
To speak it: though safe silence suits with my
Devout Profession, more than Words, yet now
To Courtesie's strong Law my tongue must bow.

If I to Strangers should not Kindness show
I should affront that Lord who owned me
A Stranger to himself. Yet must you know
That I pretend not by my industry
To have acquir'd that mystick wealth in which
Your not mistaking fancy counts me rich.

Alas, Agyrtes had as sottish been
As is the heavyest He that sees the light
Had Heav'n's sweet Rays not pleas'd to intervene
Between my heart and Ignorance's Night
But Jesus, who is King of Love as well
As Wisdom, deign'd with both my breast to fill.

Yet this no Wisdom is but only what
Concerns his Truth and Him: if therefore you
For any other Learning thirst but that,
Pray seek where Vanity and Error grow.
That that, or none, sweet Sir, said Psyche; We
Would only in Heav'n's Wisdom learned be.

This yielding Answer made him smile within,
And promise his proud heart the Victory:
Yet sure to make, and grace his holy Sin
To heav'n he turn'd his hell-directed Eye
And lifting up his hands, seem'd thence to take
The copy of what next he meant to speak.

Then on the ready grass, which offer'd there
Its gentle service, jointly sitting down;
Although said he, you yet but Strangers are,
Your holy Wish thus far has made you known
That I perceive you are not yet to be
Inform'd, there is a Christ and Piety.

But as the noblest things besieged are
With thornyest difficulties, so is this
Religion and Truth yet never were
Enthron'd so high, but saucy Wickedness
Would muster as aspiring Errors, and
Before their face in flat defiance stand.

Yet if a Candidate you ever were
In great Cerinthus's School, what need I now
Open my bottles to your thirst, who there
All fulness from the Fount were taught to draw?
My School, cry'd Psyche, gentle Sir, alas
Only in blind and barbarous Albion was.

Know then, that when kind Heav'n implanted had
(Replyed he) its Gospel here below
Ten thousand Weeds a conjuration made
To choke it when it first began to grow:
The Blade no sooner peeped forth, but there
These pois'nous Tyrants strove to domineer.

And surely all the harvest Hopes had been
Slain in their birth, had Jesus's watchful Care
Into his Field not sent Cerinthus: Sin
Ev'n in the spring presum'd the Crop to shear
And Truth her infant head sought where to hide;
So rampant Error was, and spread so wide.

But this sage Gardner with his timely hook
Cut those Intruders down, and clear'd the ground
The Church's soil strait cheer'd its doleful Look,
And rescu'd Truth, full room to flourish found.
The mystick Paradise began to be
From all th' insidious Serpent's dangers free.

The reverend Law, whose flaming Majesty
Flashed from Sinai, now brake out again
And chasing all licentious Mists which by
Heretick Sloth had gain'd Religion's rein
Mingled its Lustre with the Gospel's Ray,
And doubled beauteous Truth's unspotted Day.

And wonder not if that severity
Which could not but attend this Reformation
Gall'd Error's soul, and made Cerinthus be
The Butt of all despightful Indignation
Since gallant He durst check the World, and ride
Against ev'n Catholick Corruption's tide.

Blind Ignorance was grown so bold, that she
Would needs perswade the World it had no Eyes,
Making the lazy name of Mystery
In stead of Demonstration suffice,
From this black Pit those Prodigies of blear
Hoodwink'd abused Faith vomited were.

For who can fancy Heav'n would e'r obtrude
On reasonable Souls such shameless Fictions
As full against all Reason's Rules conclude,
And founded are on jarring Contradictions!
Sure God so strange a Law did never give,
That Men must not be Men if they believe.

No; 'twas not God's, but Man's most lawless Law,
Who by enacting it usurped more
Than Godlike Power on those he won to bow
Their superstitious Necks to this new Lore;
By which to brutish Sotishness they are
Enslav'd, who Free by Christian Title were.

'Tis not enough, forsooth, that we believe
Mary the Mother was to Jesus; but
Into the bargain needs we must receive
That she a Virgin still remain'd
And what More likely Proof, than her Virginity
The truth of His blest Birth to nullify?

If she a Mother be, she must be so:
But if a Virgin, she a Virgin is.
He that in One ties these repugnant Two,
May reconcile the Poles into a Kiss,
May Midnight in the face of Highnoon throw,
May cement in one Center, ay and No.

But by this Trick such Forgers pave a way
How their new Doctrines may embraced be
For most unspotted virgin Truths, though they
Prove Mothers of a numerous Progeny:
A Progeny of canonized Fictions,
Religious Lyes, and reverend Contradictions.

Yet well it were, had Mary been alone
The subject of this holy Nonsense: but
With greater impudence upon her Son
It ventur'd, and madly forging what
Unbias'd Reason cannot but detest,
This as the sacred Rule of Faith profest.

For though the Maveilmongers grant that He
Was moulded up but of a mortal metal,
And that his Substance was the same which We
Find in our selves so sadly weak and brittle;
Yet an eternal God they make him too,
And angry are that We will not do so.

(The idle Madness of a dreaming Brain
Thus counts one thing a Mountain and a Mite:
Fancies the Sun, Light's royal Sovereign,
To look like swarthy and ignoble Night
Imagins wretched Worms, although it see
Them crawl in dirt, illustrious Kings to be.)

But Heav'n forbid our Tongues should so blaspheme
And call our God as poor a thing as We.
How can Eternity be born in Time!
How can Infinitude a Baby be!
Or how can Heav'n and Earth's Almighty Lord
To Egypt fly for fear of Herod's sword!

How can the Spring of Wisdom wiser grow!
How can the most immeasurable Nature
By bounded years assistance from a low
And childish pitch, rise to a manly Stature!
How more than sottish is that Forgery,
That He should higher wax, who is Most High!

Can He be hungry who doth all things feed?
Can boundless Joy's eternal Monarch weep?
An Angel's help can Angel's Maker need?
Is He all Eye, and yet can fall asleep?
Can Man the Prince of Power crucify?
Can He, life's everlasting Fountain, die?

Such Gods as these indeed were Jupiter,
Mars, Saturn, Neptune, Mercury, Appolo,
And all that Rout to whom blind Pagans rear
Their cursed Altars: and must Christians follow
Such goodly Leaders, and their copy take
Religion worse than Atheism to make!

Surely much thank their Maker ows to them
Whose glorious Faith hath been so studious to
Heap all those vile Indignities on Him
Which they themselves abhor to undergo.
If God be such a wretched Thing, no more
Will I (and 'tis no proud word) Him adore.

But He is as impassible as they Would make
Him weak and faint: nor can He bow
To yield His high almighty Self a Prey
To our Infirmities who crawl below.
His superglorious most refined Nature
As far from Suffring is, as from a Creature.

I know they strive to mince the Matter by
Distinguishing His Natures; for their Art
(Resolv'd to blush at no Absurdity,)
Doubts not Himself ev'n from Himself to part.
Yet durst not We admit a Deity
Which must upon Distinctions builded be.

First let them prove that Contraries are one,
And that Immensity can bounded be:
That Height and Depth can friendly meet, and run
Into one Center's common Unity:
That Truth is double: that one Person can
Be Adam's genuine Son, yet more than Man.

But O how madly mad their Doctrine is,
And how transcending Pagan Blasphemy,
Who not content to make a God of this
Both passible and mortal Jesus: try
To thrust Him into one substantial Knot
With an eternal Sire who Him begot!

Two, yet not Two, but One these Two must be;
Nay and a Third into the Knot must cling:
The Spirit in they twist to make up Three:
Yet vouch these Three for but One single thing;
Thus fast and loose they play, or ev'n and odd,
And we a juggling Trick must have for God.

If God be one; then let Him be so still:
Why jumble We we know not what together?
Discerned not the World their God, until
This old blind Age discovered Him? Did neither
The Patriarks believe, nor Seers see
Aright, because they took not One for Three?

I and my Brethren are full well content
Ne'r to aspire to other Paradise
Than that to which those holy Heroes went
Whose Faith knew no such curious Prodigies.
No; Faith's a grave and sober Maid: and she
Loves neither Quirk nor Trick nor Forgery.

Let love and duty make of Christ as high
And glorious a Thing as Wit can reach;
Provided that against the Deity
No sacrilegious injury they preach.
If He that only way may honored be,
Him to neglect is Piety, say We.

But we neglect Him not, who merits more
Of us, than all our Reverence can pay:
Our necks we yield to His most gentle Lore,
And His Commands ambitiously obey.
His royal Law, is Love; and hated be
They who love not so sweet a Lord as He.

For our parts, we can willingly defy
Whatever dares our Love to Him oppose;
No Persecution frights our Loyalty,
Nor durst we think those lives are lost we loose
In His dear quarrel, who by Dying hath
Op'd us a way to Life through any Death.

You see how freely our Profession we
Impart to Strangers; being confident
That honest Truth can never shamed be.
Yet whither you will bow down your Consent
To our meek Doctrines, since I doubtful am.
Expect not I should further lavish them.

For if your Faith relies on Men, who are
Themselves but founded upon mouldering Dust;
If you by Reason's rule disdain to square
Your Piety, and take your God on trust.
(Which Heav'n forbid!) you only are a Prize
To foul Imposters' fairtongu'd Fallacies.

He ceased here. When Logos louting low
His fauning head to Psyche, gave her joy
That she had met so grave a Doctor now
Whose piercing Judgment's edge could cut the way
So plain and clear through those thik fogs which had
Religions' region sadly overspread.

Err not, said he, your former Error, but
Think how unjustly you Authades sleighted.
O what substantial Arguments, and what
Strong Motives has he muster'd and united
In this concise Discourse, whose depth might well
Be owned by the holyest Oracle.

Psyche, whose shier heart not long ago
Would have abhor'd this venomous Language more
Than doth the Lamb the Wolf's or Lyon's, who
Nothing but barbarous slaughter to it roar;
Had now forgot her pious jealous fear.
And knew not what it meant to be aware.

She from the Nazaren Cup already had
Sipped some drops of Bane; which having won
Her fond heart's approbation, it made
An open chanel for full streams to run
Into her bosom. Thus an Army by
One little breach pours in its Victory.

Nay though a strange reluctant Tremor through
Her bones did glide, she would not hearken what
That secret Item whispered, nor know
What dangerous Knowledge she affected; but
With monstrous Weakness conquers her own Might
And to her fatal Wo yields with delight.

She yields to swallow this Cerinthian Bait,
And studies to her Murderer thanks to pay.
Dear Sir, said she, your solid Reason's weight
Doth on my heart such sound Persuasion lay
That needs it must submit, and henceforth learn
Your further Favour thankfully to earn.

Scarce had she spoke; when lo, her Doctor, who
Had spy'd her Guardian flying thither, took
His leave as handsomly as haste and wo
Would him permit. Alas the Angel's look
Frighted the Cheater, who suspicious was
That Phylax would his holy Fraud uncase.

But as away he sneaked; Psyche's friend
Hot in th' impatience of loving Wrath
The whining air with sprightful wings did rend
And shot himself through the directest path
To reach his Charge; for whom his heart did quake.
Because her own, though ruin'd, would not shake.

For by Love's Faithful Sympathy (though He
About his other work far distant were,)
He still preserv'd a soft Vicinity
With Psyche's Soul, and felt each wound: which there
Sophistick Darts had made, though foolish she
Perceived not her sugar'd misery.

At his approach, for joy the Virgin wept,
Not thinking that those tears to Shame were due
For still Syneidesis securely slept,
And to her heart forbore her heart to shew.
She to her Self was more a Stranger, than
The Tarter to the Aetheopian.

But Phylax, almost out of breath for haste,
Suck'd in fresh spirits, and strictly then demanded
Who 'twas that gather'd up his heels so fast.
And fled from his arrival? if offended
He at my presence were, 'tis meet that I
Said he, suspect him for your Enemy

No sure, replyed she; for neither I,
Nor Logos, could discover ought but love.
He freely taught us many a Verity,
And what he undertook, did clearly prove.
Misconster not his haste; twas no Offense
At you, but sudden bus'ness snatch'd him hence.

But Phylax better knowing him, than She,
The total matter gently sifted out;
And wrought upon her Softness so, that He
His kind Design right subtly brought about:
For full confession from her charmed tongue
Of both her Doctors's Principles he wrung.

Which heard; he groan'd, and smote his pitying breast
And fixed upon hers his speaking eye;
By which the mixed language he exprest
Of love and wrath, of hope and jealousy:
And in this Prologue setting ope the door,
He from his lips his troubled Mind did pour.

Left I my Charge, O Psyche, to the Wind
When hence I took my journey, or to Thee?
If in my dearest cabinet, thy Mind,
I my Advice deposed, could it be
That every Cheater's breath should open lay
Thy breast, and blow that solid Pawn away?

If ever yet I fail'd to justify
My tenderest Affection's truth to thee;
Thou thence mightst patch up some Apology
Wherewith to cloke thy proving False to me.
But see what Logick thou hast learnt of late.
Who mak'st Love's Premisses conclude in Hate.

'T had been but fair, if thou hadst staid to hear
What I against those Arguments could say.
Whose Charms have stoll'n thy faith out at thine ear.
But Phylax was not worth Expecting; nay
Not worth Remembring; else how could thy lip
Seal'd up by mine, Cerinthus's kisses sip!

My heart misgave me when away I went,
Or rather when with thine I left it here:
Ask but thy self what earnest pains I spent
To arm thy tender Soul with sacred fear.
O why with foolish confidence wouldst thou
Disarm thy self, and make room for the Blow?

That Blow, which struck so deep into thy breast
That if some sovereign Balsam makes not speed
If strait thy Wounds be not as deeply drest;
If Heav'n be not as quick new life to shed
Into thy Soul, as Hell was to betray
It unto death; this is thy fatal Day.

Alas those Doctrines only Poisons were
Squeez'd from the dregs of Satan's direful Pit.
Less pestilential those Venoms are
Which desperate Basilisks and Vipers spit.
Nor Aphrodisus's, nor Agenor's tongue
With such sure Bane thy careless bosom stung.

And canst thou Psyche, thus requite thy Lord
For all the treasures of His Love which He
So freely into thy poor heart hath pour'd?
What? plainly rob Him of his Deity,
And tear Him from his throne, whilst royal He
His heav'nly Realm prepares for worthless Thee?

Brisk Logos here no longer patience had;
For pricking up his insolent crest, he cry'd,
Good Sir, and take you me for one so mad
That in my proper road I cannot ride;
But both my Self, and Way, so wildely loose.
And willingly deep Precipices choose?

If Eyes of Colours sober judges be,
If Tongues can censure what is sour and sweet,
If Ears can Discords know from Harmony,
If Touching may decide in Cold and Heat;
Why may not I, who sit in Reason's chair.
Presume to judge what Proofs convincing are?

Unless I to my Essence give the Lye,
These Doctrines builded are on Demonstration.
But if you only must be Psyche's Eye;
Ev'n pull me out, that by no perturbation
The progress of your Plots I may forestal:
Pray let me be my Self, or not at all.

Psyche was glad to hear this Challenge beat
So high, and hop'd that Phylax would relent.
And were Angelick love's heroick Heat
Less resolute than it is, just Discontent
Had quenched Phylax's flames, which braved now
By this bold Opposition stouter grew.

For from her heav'n with secret instance He
Drew Charis down, to join her Powers with his.
Strait viewing Psyche's wounded bosom, she
Melted with pity at her deep distress;
And by victorious Sweetness op'd a way
Into her heart, and Thelema made her prey.

For with all heav'nly Operations, Speed
Contempor'd is; that in the quick Effect
The dullest Eye apparently may reed
Omnipotence's dint. Thus Charis checks
Stout Thelema, and in a moment press
Her to a Willingness not to Resist.

Which Phylax marking: Logos strives in vain,
Said he, to countermine my care of thee.
I these Affronts, and greater, can sustain
Rather than Psyche should destroyed be;
All this, and more, I will forget, so thou
Wilt see one Spectacle I have to show.

Logos look'd big, and strugled might and main;
But Thelema was tractable and tame,
And vow'd the sullen Rebel to constrain
Unto her pliant mind his own to frame.
Poor Psyche sigh'd and wept, and half afraid,
Phylax with her to do his pleasure pray'd.

He weighing well that her Disease had need
Of nothing more than Haste in her Physitian;
Stay'd not to parle, but made all loving speed
To snatch her from these jaws of deep Perdition;
Whilst yet with Charis's soulsubduing heat
Her melted and convicted heart did beat.

Ready at hand his welknown Chariot stood,
In which he takes her up; and shakes the rein:
Forthwith the sprightful Steeds tearing the road
Which open lay upon th' ethereal plain,
Soon reached Gitton in Samaria; where
Phylax as quickly curbed their carreer.

Then lighting down, Lo Psyche, this, said he,
Is those thy newfound Doctor's native Town;
Here thou their true Original shalt see,
And from what kind of Nest they all are flown.
This House their Father's was: Come, let us in,
And view the Birthplace of Heretick Sin.

Thus entred they: when in the house they find
Such swarms of Doors, and Cells, and Galleries,
Which by quaint Turnings to and fro did wind,
That Psyche quickly lost her rolling eyes;
As she had done her Self, had Phylax not
Of all the Labyrinth full knowledge got.

But through a thousand snarl'd Meanders, to
A goodly Room he soon conducted her;
Where she another Door espy'd, but no
Cause to suspect what Dens in ambush were
Lurking behind it; so alluring was
The holy beauty of its cheating face.

A goodly Crucifix was there displaid,
Altars were rear'd, and reverend Bibles ope.
By which majestick Liturgies were laid,
And lofty-tuned Anthems; on the top
Art plac'd a Quire of Angels hovering,
And made the gorgeous Roof all seem to sing.

Truth's best Dissembler, old Apelles heir
Had quickned those dead Walls, and made them live
In many a holy History; whose fair
And breathing Colours did such welcome give.
That all Spectators' hearts leap'd to their eyes
To feast, though but on painted Rarities.

There Faith appeared with her eagle's Eye,
Hope with both hands her Anchor clasping fast,
And with wide-open bosom Charity;
Whose looks with such beseeming beams were drest.
That those who thoroughly scann'd them not, might deem
She at heav'n's genuine fire had kindled them.

With these were ranked Zeal, Austerity,
Devotion, Meekness, Gentleness, Content:
And whatsoe'r might advantageous be
The brave Imposture wisely to present.
Baits which might easly work a greater feat
Than Psyche's soft Simplicity to cheat.

She gaz'd, and copied in her foolish heart
With Fancie's pencil, what her Wonder saw.
But sober Phylax, whom no Painter's art
Could into rash (because blind) Error draw,
As easily return'd his Pupil back
As she had slipt into her fond Mistake.

What credit thou to those fair Looks may'st give
Said he, thou shalt behold when I have shown
What ugliness those beauteous Porters strive
To palliate. With that, he bent his Frown
Upon th' inchanting Hypocrites, and they
To his imperious Anger strait gave way.

The holy Pageantry it self confest,
And yielded into naked Truth; for what
Before, the life of Goodliness express,
Repented now into its native Blot:
No quintessence of ink, or soot, or pitch,
The blackness of that Chamber's walls might reach.

Nor could the Door sustain his piercing Look,
But started into shivers: when, behold,
An hideous Grot, belching out stink and smoke
A cloud of Terror upon Psyche roll'd;
In which her groping thoughts were lost, and she
Quite buried in blind Perplexity.

But Phylax shot from his illustrious Eye
Such potent lightning us subdu'd that cloud;
When lo about the Cavern's sides a Fry
Of frighted Toads into their holes did croud
And thousand Spiders, at the sight agast.
Into the centers of their webs made haste.

But O what Man's, or Muse's tongue can tell
The other Monsters which were hissing there!
Huge Snakes, preposterous Amphisbaenas fell,
And fiery Basilisks discover'd were
With angry Hydras, Scorpions, Dragons, and
Of foul Chimaeras many a marshall'd band.

Yet these all fled before the Angel's face,
And in their several dens loud howling lay:
But he intending for a further place
With these less monstrous Monsters made no stay:
Strait to a closer darker door he goes.
Things far more deadly pois'nous to disclose.

Glozing Deceits, and handsom Lyes stood there,
With gentle meek demure Hypocrisy;
All which in goodly state attended were
By treacherous Rhetorick and Phylosophy;
With Syllogisms in rank and file array'd
Whose hands three-forked massy halberts sway'd.

But dreadfully abashed, on the ground
All these before the hasting Angel fell;
Who entring by that damned Portal, found
To such a Porch a correspondent Hall.
The Stinks he met before, pure Odours were
To these which reek'd in every corner here.

The Master of the house, grim Simon, who
Wore Magus for his cussed sirname, sate
Full in the midst; whose pois'ned stomack so
Surcharged was with crude Opinions, that
Its pestilential Load, which belk'd and wrought.
Into a brazen bowl, he spewed out.

And this that indigested Chaos was
Wherein all Heresies did jumbled lie;
The fertile Womb which fostered the Mass
Of every kind of breeding Blasphemy;
The Seed and Matter whence Sin's foul Creator
Of all black hideous Fancies fram'd the feature.

As this dire Vomit smoked in the bowl,
A croud of desperate Men throng'd round about;
Whose most Accursed Thirst betray'd their soul,
To covet this black draught. No scalding drought
Of chased if arts e'r bred such strong desire
In cooling springs to quench their raging fire.

The first Sup bold Menander got, and by,
That cankering liquor so infected grew
That Simon he outspit in Heresy,
And higher than his spewing Father flew.
Much he disdain'd that God or Man should be
However noble, nobler thought than He.

Cerinthus next to lapping fell, and then
His hungry Younglings with the Venom fed;
'Mongst whom Agyrtes suck'd his part: whom when
Psyche beheld, Guilt dy'd her cheeks with red.
But Ebion thrusting in took off her eye:
He Scripture's Mangler, Fo of Chastity.

Yet Nicholas madder prov'd himself than He,
And drunk so deep, that of all learned Lust
He tumid Professor, and attain'd to be
The Hate of God. Behind him Elxai thrust,
And foul Jexeus, bretheren no less
In Nature than in lustful Putidness.

Then Saturnine, whose draught so strangely wrought,
That Purity it self he judg'd impure;
Chaste Matrimony he abhorr'd as fraught
With shameful odiousness; nor would endure
That any creature's blood his lips should stain.
Though they all humane lawful Births had slain.

Then Basilides, from this loathsome fount
Like dangerous Poison drunk: right pure and clean
Uncleanness seem'd in his corrupt account.
Nor had this Liquor different relish in
Carpocrates his mouth, and Valentin's,
The Oracles of all libidinous Sins.

From these dire Parents flow'd that numerous spawn
Of most portentuous Gnosticks, Antitacks,
Zacchaeans, Coddians, Ophites, Cainites; known
By their profession of such shameless facts
As Hell would blush at: yet these facts were those
Which they for proofs of pure Religion chose.

Next these, about the bowl's brim licking lay
The Nazarens: amongst whose sneaking fry
Were both Anthades and Pseudagius, they
Who tainted Psyche's heart with Heresy.
She saw them there, and stood amaz'd to see
Saint-seeming Souls in deep-damn'd Company.

Her woful indignation on her breast
She seated with a loud and hearty stroak;
And having thus her venturous Crime confest
Under her own hand, into tears she broke.
But Phylax charg'd her to observe the rest
Who forward to Death's living fountain prest.

For after those, appear'd the Marcosites,
Epiphanes, Secundus, Isidore;
Bold Cerdonists, and fond Heracleonites;
Marcion, Apelles; with blasphemous store
Of their Disciples: Lucan, Lucian.
Photinus, Basiliscus, Hermogen.

Then proud Montanus; with Quintilians,
Ascites, Pepuzians, and Artotyrites,
Priscillians, pharisaik Tatians,
Abstemious yet profane Severianites;
Archonticks, Adamites, Quartadecimans.
Vain Alogists, and Melchisidekians.

Tertullianists, Arabicks, Symmachists,
Homousiasts, Elxites, Origenians,
Valesians, Agrippinians, Catharists,
Hydroparastates, Patripassians.
Apostoticks, Angelicks, Chiliasts.
Samosatenian Paulianists.

Mad Maniches, outrageous Donatists,
Curs'd Arians, Colluthians, Audianites,
Marcellians, and Macedonianists,
Aerians, Acacians, Eustathites,
Eunomians, Messalians, Luciferians.
Agnoites, Hypsistarists, Apollinarians.

Timotheans, Selcucians, Collyridians
Rhetorians, Venustians, Proclianites,
Foul-mouth'd Jovinianists, and black Helvidians,
Bonosians, Campensians, Agapites;
Pelagius, Nestorius, Eutyches.
Accompany'd with all their Progenies.

Innumerable more besides were there
Whose several Poisons' Nature Phylax read
To his attentive Pupil, though they ne'r
As yet were to this world discovered.
Yea those he shew'd her, who at length would fill
With soul-destroying Bane her native Isle.

New-coyned Catharists were they; who bread
All Tribes and Kinds of raging Monsters, and
By traitorous Heresy upon the head
Of trampled Church and State presum'd to stand.
Yet these to Him but petty Vermin were
Who brandish'd now his vaster terror there.

A Prodigy of such commanding Look
That all those awed Suckers gave him way:
Three times his mighty head and locks he shook,
Three times he stoop'd, and seem'd too proud to lay
His lips so low; yet bowing down at length.
Upon the Bowl he shew'd his cursed strength:

For every drop of that foul Vomit he
Ingorged strait; and kick'd the Bowl away.
When lo the Venom's rampant potency
Made all the desperate Man its frightful Prey.
In's staring eyes, and all about his face
Infernal Horror freely took its place.

Two ragged horns brake from his brazen brow,
From's sulphury mouth impatient Blasphemy;
Big with all rancorous Spight his bosom grew;
His soul was stretch'd with arrogant Majesty.
Nor was's a wonder that he thus did swell
Who quaffed had and drunken was with Hell.

He swore, and with a thundering oath, that he
Would make the whole World to his pleasure bow.
He threatned all Heav'n's starry Bravery
Down from their highest strongest Orbs to throw;
And vow'd by his own Head, no God should be
Thenceforth believed or ador'd but He.

Forthwith he proudly bent his brawny fists,
And mounted up his more than Dragon's tail
With that artillery entering the lists,
And impudently trusting to prevail.
Nor was his Insolence in vain, for he
From Heav'n it self snatch'd down his victory.

From th' Evangelick Heav'n he boldly drew
Millions of Souls, whom he in sunder tore
Or with his breath's most Murdering Venom slew,
Bellowing his triumph in a dismal Roar:
Which made th' Heretick Frie terribly quake.
Curs'd Simon start, and honest Psyche shake.

But to allay the tempest of her fear,
Mark, Phylax cry'd, mark but what bounds restrain
The Monsters pride; for He's a pris'ner here,
And cannot break that adamantine Chain
Which Him and all his viperous Company
Though at some distance, fast to Hell doth tie.

She look'd, and saw her Guardian told her true:
She saw the Chain, which led into a Pit
Whence thick sulphureous Eructations flew,
And boiling Iron fiery terror spit.
Aloud she shriek'd, and turn'd about to spy
How from that gaping mouth of death to fly.

But shelter'd by his Wings' Security,
And by his trusty Word incouraged,
Into the Grot she ventured her eye;
Which there a more prodigeous Object read,
Than she had seen imprinted in the book
Of hideous Antichrist's portentuous Look.

It was that Beldame Hag from whose black breast
Simon his rank unwieldy Poison drew;
Never was Fury so completely drest
In all the bravery of Horror's hue:
All shapeless shapes together tumbled were
To mould up Shame's extremity in Her.

Two heads she had, which on her Legs did grow;
Two faces, and two mouths, but ne'r an eye;
Six rows of teeth, whose task it was to gnaw
What of her Carkase they could reach: Her thigh
From an eternal Sore did poison drain
Into her throat, which spew'd it up again.

About her nasty hide the Vermins swarms
Young Adders, Slow-worms, Toads, and Spiders were:
Out at her Loins she reach'd her scaley Arms;
An hundred Nails on either hand did tear
Her dangling Dugs, and when they weary grew.
The tatter'd budgets o'r her shoulders threw.

High on her neck a twisted Tail did sprout
Arm'd with a thousand forked stings, which she
For her own torture us'd, and round about
Her self its lashes threw: prodigiously
Her pois'ned Paunch was swoll'n, and thick beset
With snarled throngs of cole-black cloven feet.

These scratch'd and scrambled every way, and drew
Her sometimes forward, sometimes back again:
If yet this most confounded Monster knew
What back and forward meant; for 'twas in vain
For any Eye to hope in her to find.
What might be term'd Before, and what Behind.

As Psyche shiver'd at this baleful sight,
And now, said Phylax, do'st not see and feel
That Logos's counsel solid was and right,
By which sage He engag'd thy heart to dwell
In this fine Ladie's family: for she
Is Grandame to that hideous Progeny.

Since thou hast made this choice, and scorned Me,
And my Advice; ev'n take thy chosen place,
Or in Pseudagius his company,
Or in Agyrtes: nay do not disgrace
Thy learned Prudence so as to retract:
Judicious Logos will not like the fact.

Poor Logos heard this word; which through his heart
Such Shame and Sorrow shot, that humbled He
Resolved ne'r to trust his proper art
Unless with Phylax' mind it did agree.
But yet in Psyche's tender breast the Wound
More stinging was, more fatally profound.

For prostrate at his feet, in silence she
Grappled a while with her outrageous Grief:
But when she saw the woful Victory
Growing upon her, and found no relief
In all her soul; she mingles with her sighs
Her Deplorations, and thus she cries:

Alas, Pseudagius' or Agyrtes' Place,
Though sunk in horrors, are too high for me:
That dreadful Hag's prodigious embrace
Is doubly due to my Apostasy:
Deserv'd have wretched I that she should hug
Me with her Tail, and feed me with her Dug.

For had Pseudagius' or Agyrtes' heart,
Like mine, been by a Phylax fortify'd;
No Mines, no Onslates of heretick Art
Had won their Forts: but I, by sottish Pride
Sleiting the Potent help of thy supply,
Chose on mine own bold Weakness to rely.

I fain would pardon beg; but mighty Shame
Seals up my mouth, and Guilt beats back my breath:
I fain would invocate His gracious Name
Who gave His Life to rescue me from death:
But Horror stifles my Attempt, since I
Have prov'd a Traytor to His Deity.

But thou, sweet Phylax, never did'st displease
Our sacred Sovereign, nor force His frown;
Seal'd sure on Thee His endless Favour is,
And thy Desires He with success will crown;
Would'st thou but plead for me, though not for mine.
He will for thy dear sake His ear incline.

I know my Impudence strains high, who dare
Crave thus much favour of abused Thee;
But thy brave Charity delights to war
Against the most perverse conspiracy
Of my Demerits, witness its divine
Battle against, Agenor's Pride and Mine.

O why shall my ingrateful Error be
Able to frustrate thy strong Love's Design!
Why may'st thou not be Phylax still to me,
And, spight of all my Darkness, freely shine
With heav'nly Help! why must Hell's Tyrant bost
That Heav'n and You your pains and me have lost!

If ever more from thy Advice I start,
By bold and traiterous Curiosity,
Amidst those Furies may I reap my part
Of my already-earned misery;
And may thy Wing no more for me be spread.
No more thy Tongue for my reprievement plead.

Divided here 'twixt trembling hope and fear,
On Him she fix'd her lamentable Eye:
Urging the rest by Looks; which louder were
Than all her former Cries. This modesty
A potent charm to her soft Guardian was.
Who took her up, and bad her wipe her face.

Your holy Resolution hold, said he,
And with the Issue trust my love and care:
Into false paths you ne'r were lur'd by me
Who more discerning eyes than Logos wear.
The ways I set may craggy seem, and high;
But such lead up to heav'n's sublimity.

Here by her hand then tenderly he led,
Gathering the steps by which he came into
The Grot: the curs'd Inhabitants were glad
(Though vex'd withal) that he had pass'd then, so.
The Serpents creeping from their holes again,
Hiss'd after him, and spit their angry pain.

[1702; Grosart (1880) 2:110-23]