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ONCE there lived a man who dreamed a very wonderful dream. In that dream he
J beheld a man, named Christian, clothed in rags, bearing on his back a heavy
burden, and weeping bitterly, because he had read in a book that the city in which he
dwelt was to be burned with fire, and he knew not how to escape being destroyed. All
his friends laughed at him, and would not believe that destruction was coming upon them;
jo, bidding farewell to his wife and children, and turning his back on the city where they
lwelt, Christian set out alone. He travelled along a difficult road, sometimes reading in
the book which he carried with him, and sometimes weeping and crying aloud, What
shall I do to be saved? As he went along thus, a man named Evangelist came up to
him and asked him whither he was going? and what was the cause of his distress?
Christian told him he wept because of the burden on his back, which was so heavy that
le feared it would sink him down to the pit; and as to whither he was going, he knew not.
Evangelist gave him a roll of parchment, on which was written, Flee from the wrath to
come." "Whither shall I flee?" asked Christian. Evangelist pointed to a shining light
before them. Run thither," he said, keeping that light before your eye until you
come to a gate, at which, when thou knockest, it shall be told thee what thou shalt do."
So Christian ran as fast as he could, his friends running after him to bring him back, but
he would not be stayed. He had not gone far till he fell into a deep mire, called The
Slough of Despond, and, borne down by the weight of his burden, he was ready to sink,
when a man named Help came to him and drew him out, and set him on his way again.
Then came one Mr Worldly-Wiseman to Christian and talked with him, and persuaded
THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS.
him to turn aside out of the way with him, and he would bring him to one who would take
the burden off his back. He directed him to a house which stood on a hill close by, and
ask for one Mr Legality; but when Christian got to the hill, it sent forth flashes of fire, so
that he was afraid he should be burned, and he was sorry that he had taken the advice of
Mr Worldly-Wiseman. When he was in this state of fear he perceived Evangelist coming
to him again, who reproved him for turning out of the way, and charged him to look
neither to the right nor to the left until he came to the gate. In process of time Christian
got to the gate, on which he saw written, Knock, and it shall be opened unto you." So
he knocked two or three times, and the gate was opened to him by one Goodwill, who
gave him further directions for his way--this gate being only the entrance to the road
towards the Celestial City, whither Christian was now bound. He next came to the house
of one Mr Interpreter, who instructed him and showed him many wonderful things.
One thing which astonished Christian exceedingly, was a man in an iron cage, who looked
very miserable indeed, and sighed continually. Christian asked him who he was, and
why he was there. He answered Christian that once he was a fair professor, going on the
road to the Celestial City, but he had turned out of the way; and, for his sins and evil
deeds, he was shut up in this cage for ever, and was now called The Man of Despair.
Christian was very sad on hearing this, and prayed God to help him to watch and b~
sober." After Christian left the house of the Interpreter, the road on each side wa
fenced by a wall called Salvation. Up this road poor Christian tried to run, but the
burden which was still on his back hindered him. At last he came to a place where stood
a cross, and at the foot of the cross was a sepulchre. Just as Christian came up to the
cross his burden fell from him, and rolled down into the sepulchre, and he saw it no more.
Christian stood still, weeping and wondering why the cross should ease him of his load;
and while he stood three shining ones came to him. The first said, Thy sins be forgiven
thee;" the second stripped him of his rags, and clothed him with new raiment; and the
third set a mark on his forehead, and gave him a roll with a seal on it, into which he bade
him look as he ran; he bade him also deliver the roll at the gate of the Celestial City.
Then Christian gave three great leaps for joy, and went on his way singing. It was easy
for Christian to walk now, being rid of his burden; and reading in his roll as he went
along, and drinking of the brooks by the way to refresh himself, the time passed very
pleasantly. At one time, however, he fell asleep on the hill called Difficulty; and in
his sleep he let his roll fall from his hand. Then came one to him and awaked him,
THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS.
saying, "Go to the ant, thou sluggard!" Christian started up and hastened on his way,
without perceiving that he had lost his roll; but soon afterwards, wishing to read therein,
he put his hand in his bosom to pull out his roll, and behold it was gone! In great
distress Christian went back, looking carefully on every side for the roll, which he found
just where he had fallen asleep. He picked it up and put it in his bosom again, resolved
to slumber no more when he should be hastening forward. Then he came to a palace
called Beautiful, where three sisters-Prudence, Piety, and Charity-entertained him
with good discourse, and with great hospitality, showing him before he left "The
Delectable Mountains," or Immanuel's Land "-a country beautified with vineyards,
flowers, and numerous springs of water. Thither they bade Christian hasten; but before
he reached these beautiful mountains he had to pass through The Valley of Humiliation,"
in which he had a great battle with one Apollyon, who was like to have killed him, but
Christian fought very bravely, and escaped with his life, although carrying away many
wounds. At the end of this valley was another frightful place, called The Valley of
the Shadow of Death, in which Christian saw many horrible sights, and heard many
strange sounds, which filled him with terror, and made him very glad to get out of it.
Further on the road he met with one Hopeful, who also was a pilgrim to the Celestial
City, and the two joining company, held sweet discourse together about the beautiful land
to which they were going. As they journeyed they had to pass through a city called
Vanity Fair. There they were taken prisoners, and put into a cage as a spectacle to the
people, who jeered and laughed, and threw mud at them. But this was not the last of
their troubles; for not long after they got out of Vanity Fair, they were again taken
prisoners by a wicked old Giant Despair, who shut them up in a dungeon in Doubting
' " Castle, besides beating them with a great cudgel until they were ready to die. Then
the cruel old giant threatened to tear them in pieces, and doubtless would have done so,
but Christian remembered that he had in his bosom a key called Promise, which, when
he tried in the door of his dungeon, opened it at once, and the two made their escape
from Doubting Castle and from Giant Despair. Then they went on their way till they
reached the Delectable Mountains, with their vineyards, orchards, and fountains of water.
There they refreshed themselves, and stayed for a little with the shepherds whom they
found feeding their flocks on the mountains. Before leaving, these good shepherds caused
the two pilgrims to look through their perspective-glass, by which they saw the gates of
the Celestial City. At this the pilgrims were exceeding joyful; for they knew that their
THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS.
journey was drawing to a close; and after a few more trials and dangers they at last
reached the borders of the happy land. There the air was filled with delicious perfumes;
and the voice of the turtle, and the singing of birds, were heard continually. From these
borders, also, they beheld the pearly walls and the golden streets of their beautiful city.
Between them and the city, however, flowed a river, which they had to cross. The river
was very deep, and there was no bridge; but they passed through its billows, comforting
one another with these words:-" When thou passes through the waters, I will be with
thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee." Then they beheld two
shining ones waiting on the opposite bank for them, and they were received into the
Celestial City with great joy and singing.
Golden crowns were placed on their heads and harps in their hands, and there they
dwelt, for ever giving thanks to Him who had delivered them out of all their dangers,
and singing, Blessing, and glory, and honour, and power, be unto Him that sitteth on
the Throne, and unto the Lamb, for ever and ever."
Poor, sorrowful Pilgrims! they took the way
To the Beautiful City, in sad dismay;
Seeking relief from the burden of sin,
Striving salvation and glory to win.
Weeping, they came to the foot of the Cross!
Whence the world appeared but a mound of dross,
Because of the beauty which hung around
That spot where their burdens fell to the ground.
Triumphant Pilgrims! at last they stand
On the beautiful shores of the longed-for land,
Casting their crowns at the feet of the Lord,
Who victory o'er their foes did accord.
Parts I. and II.
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