Page:Paradise lost by Milton, John.djvu/345

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339
BOOK X.

To rule, as over all he should have ruled.
True is, me also he hath judged, or rather
Me not, but the brute serpent, in whose shape
Man I deceived. That which to me belongs,
Is enmity, which he will put between
Me and mankind: I am to bruise his heel;
His seed—when is not set—shall bruise my head.
A world who would not purchase with a bruise,500
Or much more grievous pain? Ye have the account
Of my performance. What remains, ye Gods,
But up, and enter now into full bliss?"
So having said, awhile he stood, expecting
Their universal shout and high applause
To fill his ear; when, contrary, he hears
On all sides, from innumerable tongues,
A dismal universal hiss, the sound
Of public scorn. He wondered, but not long
Had leisure, wondering at himself now more.510
His visage drawn he felt to sharp and spare,
His arms clung to his ribs, his legs entwining
Each other, till supplanted down he fell,
A monstrous serpent, on his belly prone,
Reluctant, but in vain; a greater power
Now ruled him, punished in the shape he sinned,
According to his doom. He would have spoke,
But hiss for hiss returned with forked tongue
To forked tongue; for now were all transformed