Page:Paradise lost by Milton, John.djvu/411

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BOOK XII.

With glory and spoil, back to their promised land.
But first the lawless tyrant, who denies
To know their God, or message to regard,
Must be compelled by signs and judgements dire.
To blood unshed the rivers must be turned;
Frogs, lice, and flies must all his palace fill
With loathed intrusion, and fill all the land;
His cattle must of rot and murrian die;
Blotches and blains must all his flesh emboss,180
And all his people; thunder mixed w4th hail,
Hail mixed with fire, must rend the Egyptian sky,
And wheel on the earth, devouring where it rolls;
What it devours not, herb, or fruit, or grain,
A darksome cloud of locusts swarming down
Must eat, and on the ground leave nothing green;
Darkness must overshadow all his bounds,
Palpable darkness, and blot out three days;
Last, with one midnight-stroke, all the first-born
Of Egypt must lie dead. Thus with ten wounds190
The river-dragon tamed at length submits
To let his sojourners depart, and oft
Humbles his stubborn heart, but still, as ice,
More hardened after thaw; till, in his rage,
Pursuing whom he late dismissed, the sea
Swallows him with his host; but them lets past,
As on dry land, between two crystal walls,
Awed by the rod of Moses so to stand
Divided, till his rescued gained their shore: