To show him all earth’s kingdoms and their glory
Milton, Paradise Lost, Book XI, 383
Gaze at the past kings, clad in gold,
Their finery excelled by all their majesty.
The wonder of tumultuous apathy and heresy,
Of reigns a thousand years and revolt.
The glory of earth’s kingdoms lain out before my eyes
Now passes on as each of those people dies,
Some lain in pyramids, raised to the sky,
And others unmarked in poverty or adversity.
The world processes before you, and I ask you not to cry,
But instead marvel at its diversity.
The tempo of events slows a great deal in Book XI – and the point where Adam sees all of the future is one of those points. However, I admit that my historical studies make this rather irresistible as a subject.
The Hapless Neo-Romantic