We've posted on each of Blake's four major cities: London, Galgoonoza, Babylon and Jerusalem but there is more to be said. London was Blake's outward experience, with all its errors and contradictions; Golgonooza, the city within London (which through imagination may correct errors through vision, forgiveness and spiritual gifts), was created to provide an escape from the merely physical; Babylon was the expression of the soulless, self-centered, mercenary city which grows when man fails to develop his inner riches; and Jerusalem was the spiritual city, the potential for the inner and outer realization of Eternal values.
Although we have already posted four time on subjects related to Golgonooza, more needs to be said.
Blake speaks frequently of Golgonooza:
Milton, PLATE 6, (E 99)
"From Golgonooza the spiritual Four-fold London eternal
In immense labours & sorrows, ever building, ever falling,
Thro Albions four Forests which overspread all the Earth,"
Milton, Plate 17,(E 111)
"For travellers from Eternity. pass outward to Satans seat,
But travellers to Eternity. pass inward to Golgonooza."
Milton, Plate 20, (E 113)
"for in brain and heart and loins
Gates open behind Satans Seat to the City of Golgonooza
Which is the spiritual fourfold London, in the loins of Albion"
Milton, Plate 24, E( 119)
"I the Fourth Zoa am also set
The Watchman of Eternity, the Three are not! & I am preserved
Still my four mighty ones are left to me in Golgonooza
Still Rintrah fierce, and Palamabron mild & piteous
Theotormon filld with care, Bromion loving Science"
You O my Sons still guard round Los. O wander not & leave me
Milton, Plate 24, (E 120)
"But Golgonooza is namd Art & Manufacture by mortal men."
Milton, Plate 29, (E 128)
"Then Los conducts the Spirits to be Vegetated, into
Great Golgonooza, free from the four iron pillars of Satans
(Temperance, Prudence, justice, Fortitude, the four pillars of
That Satans Watch-Fiends, touch them not before they Vegetate."
Milton, Plate 35, (E 135)
"So spake Ololon in reminiscence astonishd, but they
Could not behold Golgonooza without passing the Polypus
A wondrous journey not passable by Immortal feet, & none
But the Divine Saviour can pass it without annihilation.
For Golgonooza cannot be seen till having passd the Polypus
It is viewed on all sides round by a Four-fold Vision
Or till you become Mortal & Vegetable in Sexuality
Then you behold its mighty Spires & Domes of ivory & gold"
Jerusalem, Plate 10, (E 153)
"Therefore Los stands in London building Golgonooza
Compelling his Spectre to labours mighty; trembling in fear
The Spectre weeps, but Los unmovd by tears or threats remains
I must Create a System, or be enslav'd by another Mans
I will not Reason & Compare: my business is to Create"
Jerusalem, Plate 12, (E 156)
"Go on, builders in hope: tho Jerusalem wanders far away,
Without the gate of Los: among the dark Satanic wheels.
Fourfold the Sons of Los in their divisions: and fourfold,
The great City of Golgonooza: fourfold toward the north
And toward the south fourfold, & fourfold toward the east & west
Each within other toward the four points: that toward
Eden, and that toward the World of Generation,
And that toward Beulah, and that toward Ulro:
Ulro is the space of the terrible starry wheels of Albions sons:
But that toward Eden is walled up, till time of renovation:
Yet it is perfect in its building, ornaments & perfection.
And the Four Points are thus beheld in Great Eternity
West, the Circumference: South, the Zenith: North,
The Nadir: East, the Center, unapproachable for ever."
Jerusalem, Plate 14, (E 157)
"Around Golgonooza lies the land of death eternal; a Land
Of pain and misery and despair and ever brooding melancholy:"
Jerusalem, Page 87, (E 368)
"Los performd Wonders of labour
They Builded Golgonooza Los labouring builded pillars high
And Domes terrific in the nether heavens for beneath
Was opend new heavens & a new Earth beneath & within
Threefold within the brain within the heart within the loins
A Threefold Atmosphere Sublime continuous from Urthonas world
But yet having a Limit Twofold named Satan & Adam"
Jerusalem, Page 100, (E 372)
"And upon Enitharmon & the Divine Countenance shone
In Golgonooza Looking down the Daughters of Beulah saw
With joy the bright Light & in it a Human form
And knew he was the Saviour Even Jesus & they worshipped
Astonishd Comforted Delighted in notes of Rapturous Extacy
All Beulah stood astonishd Looking down to Eternal Death
They saw the Saviour beyond the Pit of death & destruction
For whether they lookd upward they saw the Divine Vision
Or whether they lookd downward still they saw the Divine Vision
Surrounding them on all sides beyond sin & death & hell"
Four Zoas, Page 103, (E 376)
"In Golgonoozas Furnaces among the Anvils of time & space
Thus forming a Vast family wondrous in beauty & love
And they appeard a Universal female form created
From those who were dead in Ulro from the in Spectres of the dead"
In Golgoonooza: City of Imagination, Kathleen Raine sees Golgonooza as an attempt to make visible the archetypal city of Eternity by those who remember Eternal things. Lovers of wisdom, poets, painters, architects - those with imagination - are the agents (Los and his sons) for building Golgonooza. Within London the the spiritual Four-fold eternal city is to take form as multiple pathways or gates into Great Eternity.
Kathleen Raine: "Jerusalem can never, in the very nature of time and change be fully realized on earth , yet Jerusalem has in Golgoonoza, her refugees, her 'secret chambers' in the houses of London's inhabitants, and among these Blake's own house in 'lovely Lambeth', where he and Catherine lived in the early years of their marriage, where a vine grew unpruned in their small garden."
Image from the British Museum
Milton, Plate 1, (E 95)
"I will not cease from Mental Fight,
Nor shall my Sword sleep in my hand:
Till we have built Jerusalem,
In Englands green & pleasant Land."
Footnote: Field of Dreams; "Is this heaven?", "No, it's Iowa".