Wednesday, July 28, 2010

"Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heav'n"

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From Milton, Paradise Lost (1674):
                                          Here at least
We shall be free; th' Almighty hath not built
Here for his envy, will not drive us hence:
Here we may reign secure, and in my choice
To reign is worth ambition though in Hell:
Better to reign in Hell, then serve in Heav'n. (I.258-263)

(Illustration is John Martin, Pandemonium, 1824-27.)

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