Pilgrims Progress

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Entering the Palace "Beautiful"

So I saw in my dream that he made haste and went forward, that if possible he might get lodging there. Now before he had gone far, he entered into a very narrow passage, which was about a furlong off of the porter’s lodge; and, looking very narrowly before him as he went, he spied two lions in the way. Now, thought he, I see the dangers by which MISTRUST and TIMOROUS were driven back. (The lions were chained; but he saw not the chains.) Then he was afraid, and thought also himself to go back after them; for he thought nothing but death was before him. But the porter at the lodge, whose name is WATCHFUL, perceiving that CHRISTIAN made a halt, as if he would go back, cried unto him, saying, "Is thy strength so small? (Mr 4:40) fear not the lions; for they are chained, and are placed there for trial of faith where it is; and for discovery of those that have none: keep in the midst of the path, and no hurt shall come unto thee!"

Then I saw that he went on, trembling for fear of the lions, but taking good heed to the directions of the porter. He heard them roar; but they did him no harm. Then he clapped his hands, and went on till he came and stood before the gate where the porter was. Then said CHRISTIAN to the porter, "Sir, what house is this? and may I lodge here tonight?" The porter answered, "This house was built by the Lord of the hill; and he built it for the relief and security of pilgrims." The porter also asked whence he was, and whither he was going?

Christian. I am come from the city of Destruction, and am going to Mount Zion; but because the sun is now set, I desire, if I may, to lodge here tonight.

Watchful, the Porter. What is your name?

Christian. My name is now CHRISTIAN; but my name at the first was GRACELESS: I came of the race of Japheth, whom God will persuade to dwell in the tents of Shem. (Ge 9:27)

Watchful. But how doth it happen that you come so late? the sun is set!

Christian. I had been here sooner; but that—wretched man that I am—I slept by the arbour that stands on the hillside. Nay, I had, notwithstanding that, been here much sooner, but that in my sleep I lost my evidence, and came without it to the brow of the hill; and then, feeling for it, and finding it not, I was forced, with sorrow of heart, to go back to the place where I slept my sleep, where I found it, and now I am come.

Watchful. Well, I will call out one of the virgins of this place, who will, if she likes your talk, bring you in to the rest of the family, according to the rules of the house. So WATCHFUL the porter rang a bell; at the sound of which, came out at the door of the house a grave and beautiful damsel, named DISCRETION, and asked why she was called.

Watchful answered, "This man is in a journey from the city of Destruction to Mount Zion; but being weary and benighted, he asked me if he might lodge here tonight: so I told him I would call for you, who, after discourse had with him, may do as seems good, even according to the law of the house."

Discretion. Then she asked him whence he was, and whither he was going: and he told her. She asked him also how he got into the way: and he told her. Then she asked him what he had seen and met with in the way: and he told her. And last, she asked his name: so he said, "It is CHRISTIAN; and I have so much the more a desire to lodge here tonight, because, by what I perceive, this place was built by the Lord of the hill for the relief and security of pilgrims." So she smiled, but the water stood in her eyes; and after a little pause, she said, "I will call forth two or three more of the family." So she ran to the door, and called out PRUDENCE, PIETY, and CHARITY, who, after a little more discourse with him, had him in to the family, and many of them meeting him at the threshold of the house, said, "Come in, thou blessed of the Lord! this house was built by the Lord of the hill on purpose to entertain such pilgrims in." Then he bowed his head, and followed them into the house. So when he was come in, and set down, they gave him something to drink; and consented together that, until supper was ready, some of them should have some particular discourse with CHRISTIAN, for the best improvement of time: and they appointed PIETY, and PRUDENCE, and CHARITY, to discourse with him; and thus they began: