69. Jerusalem
Written by William Blake, 1804
From Preface to Milton: A Poem, by William Blake, 1810/11
Available via http://www.blakearchive.org/exist/blake/archive/work.xq?workid=milton&java=no


And did those feet in ancient time,
Walk upon England’s mountains green
And was the holy Lamb of God,
On England’s pleasant pastures seen!

And did the countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem built here,
Among these dark Satanic Mills

Bring me my Bow of burning gold;
Bring me my Arrows of desire;
Bring me my Spear; O clouds unfold.
Bring me my Chariot of Fire;

I will not cease from Mental Fight
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand;
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant Land.


Would to God that all the Lords people
Were prophets
(- Numbers 11:29)

On Jerusalem in England, Part One


The stolen and Perverted Writings of Homer & Ovid; of Plato & Cicero, which all Men ought to contemn: are set up by artifice against the Sublime of the Bible. But when the New Age is at leisure to Pronounce; all will be set right, & those Grand Works of the more ancient & consciously & professedly inspired Men, will hold their proper rank, and the Daughters of Memory shall become the Daughters of Inspiration. Shakespeare and Milton were both curbd by the general malady & infection from the silly Greek & Latin slaves of the Sword. Rouse up O Young Men of the New Age! Set your foreheads against the ignorant Hirelings! For we have Hirelings in the Camp, the Court and the University; who would if they could, for ever depress Mental and prolong Corporeal War, Painters! On you I call! Sculptors, Architects! Suffer not the fashionable Fools to depress your powers by the prices they pretend to give for contemptible works or the expensive advertising boasts that they make of such works; believe Christ & his Apostles that there is a class of Men whose whole delight is in Destroying. We do not want either Greek or Roman models if we are but just & true to our own imaginations, those Worlds of Eternity in which we shall live for ever; in Jesus our Lord.

- Transcription of Preface to Milton, by William Blake, 1809, London via The preface to Milton, as it appeared in Blake’s own illuminated version,




To the Jews.
Jerusalem the Emanation of the Giant Albion! Can it be? Is it a
Truth that the Learned have explored? Was Britain the Primitive
Seat of the Patriarchal Religion? If it is true: my title-page is
also True, that Jerusalem was & is the Emanation of the Giant
Albion. It is True, and cannot be controverted. Ye are united O
ye Inhabitants of Earth in One Religion. The Religion of Jesus:
the most Ancient, the Eternal: & the Everlasting Gospel—The
Wicked will turn it to Wickedness,
the Righteous to Righteousness. Amen! Huzza! Selah!
‘All things Begin & End in Albion’s Ancient Druid Rocky Shore.’

Your Ancestors derived their origin from Abraham, Heber, Shem,
and Noah, who were Druids: as the Druid Temples (which are the
Patriarchal Pillars & Oak Groves) over the whole Earth witness to
this day. You have a tradition, that Man anciently containd in his mighty
limbs all things in Heaven & Earth: this you received from the Druids.
‘But now the Starry Heavens are fled from the mighty limbs of Albion.’

Albion was the Parent of the Druids; & in his Chaotic State of
Sleep Satan & Adam & the whole World was Created by the Elohim.

The fields from Islington to Marylebone,
To Primrose Hill and Saint Johns Wood:
Were builded over with pillars of gold,
And there Jerusalem’s pillars stood.

Her Little-ones ran on the fields
The Lamb of God among them seen
And fair Jerusalem his Bride:
Among the little meadows green.

Pancras & Kentish-town repose
Among her golden pillars high:
Among her golden arches which
Shine upon the starry sky.’

- JERUSALEM: The Emanation of The Giant Albion, by William Blake, 1804, via Preterist Archives Online Books http://www.preteristarchive.com



William Blake. Born: 28 Bond Street, London, England, 28 November 1757. Died: 3 Fountain Court, London, England, 12 August 1827. Buried: Bunhill Fields cemetery, 17 August 1827.

1804: Blake begins to work to self-publish both Milton, A Poem, and Jerusalem. Both books were probably written during his time in Feltham, Sussex (he moved there in 1800). Blake spends most of the next six years putting the plates together.

While the text for Milton was probably written in 1804, the finished book was probably put together in 1810/11. Milton describes Blake’s visions and puts them not only in text form but in visual form as well. Blake upon entering his garden one evening saw Milton, in the form of a comet, enter his right heel. In other visions a girl comes to him and Milton emerges from Blake’s heel to confront her.

The language of the book is difficult because Blake has created a pantheon of angels and spirits which personify forces he sees active in the world. He uses these to talk about his visions. This makes understanding his book difficult without studying Blake’s personal religion carefully.’

- English Concept Art – William Blake. Tigertail Virtual Museum http://www.tigertail.virtual.museum/TIG/L_View/…/blake/blake.html



England @ the time of Blake’s Jerusalem: The 19th century

1800: Combination Acts of 1799 amended. Workers forbidden from joining trades unions on pain of up to three months’ hard labour. Alessandro Volta demonstrates his Voltaic cell – the first electric battery.

1801: Ireland added to Great Britain, creating the United Kingdom. Population of England and Wales estimated at nine million. Manchester is now home to 84,000 people – nearly a four-fold increase in 28 years. Raw cotton consumption has leapt to 54 million pounds – 10 times the figure of 20 years earlier. Manchester’s Whit Walks inaugurated.

1802: Treaty of Amiens between England and France brings a temporary halt to the Napoleonic War, and much-needed relief to British manufacturing industries. Richard Trevithick, freed of Watt’s patent constraints, builds his first high-pressure steam engine.

1803-15: Napoleonic Wars between Britain and France. Vienna Settlement confirms British control of St. Lucia, Tobago, and the Guiana colonies.

1803: Cotton overtakes wool as Britain’s biggest export. Napoleonic War resumes after Britain refuses to cede Malta to France. French army encamped at Boulogne, threatening invasion of England. [1]

1804: On January 1, St. Domingue is declared the republic of Haiti, the first independent black state outside Africa. [2]

1804: 11 January – Blake acquitted of sedition and assault charges at Chichester Quarter Sessions [3]

1804: Napoleon declared Emperor of France. Runcorn-Latchford Canal opened to by-pass Mersey mudflats and improve access to the Mersey and Irwell Navigation

1805: The Battle of Trafalgar. Nelson’s decisive victory over the French and Spanish fleet, breaking French naval power and establishing Britain as queen of the seas throughout the 19th century, is marred by his death during the battle. On land, Napoleon wins victories over Austria, Prussia, and Russia. In Salford, northern England, the first factory is lit by gas. The Rochdale Canal is completed.

1807: Distress throughout Lancashire caused by Napoleon’s ‘Continental System’ and Britain’s Orders in Council. Lancastrian inventor William Cockerill opens factory in Liege to produce spinning machines. In December, the US market is closed to both Britain and France. British take, and lose, Buenos Aires.

1807: Parliament abolishes the transatlantic slave trade.

1808: As recession caused by the war tightens its grip, riots throughout Lancashire call for a minimum wage. Rochdale jail burned down and prisoners released. Volunteer force deployed against Stockport weavers. Petition to Parliament calling for peace with France.

1808: Slave rebellions in the Cape Colony, newly acquired by the British. Although the slave trade was officially abolished in the British Empire by the Slave Trade Act of 1807, and slavery itself a generation later with the Slavery Abolition Act 1833, it took until 1850 to be halted in the territories which were to become South Africa. [4]

1809: Peninsular War begins. In May the weavers’ Minimum Wage bill is rejected by Commons. Up to 6,000 weavers assemble on St George’s Fields, Manchester, to renew their demands. Dragoons and police clear the field. Lt Col Joseph Hanson of Strangeways – known as the ‘Weavers’ Friend’ – is jailed and fined for aiding and abetting the weavers in a conspiracy to raise their wages.

1811: Raw cotton consumption now 90 million pounds (about 45,000 tons) a year, having almost doubled in 10 years. First steam railway opens at Middleton Colliery, Leeds. John Blenkinsop’s locomotive Salamanca is equipped with rack-and-pinion wheels. [5]



[1] ‘Cotton Times – Understanding the Industrial Revolution’. www.cottontimes.co.uk/chrono3.html

[2] ‘Timeline of Slavery. National Maritime Museum’. www.nmm.ac.uk/freedom/viewTheme.cfm/theme/timeline

[3] ‘The University of Oxford William Blake Website’. ox.ac.uk

[4] wikipedia.org/wiki/Slave_rebellion

[5] ‘Timeline of Slavery. National Maritime Museum’. www.nmm.ac.uk/freedom/viewTheme.cfm/theme/timeline



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