(Ruins of Rome 22: 303-308; Spenser 1959: 512) In contrast with this regressive perspective, in The tears of the Muses Spenser returns from the descensive
view to an ascensional image of the eternal universe, with the crystal dome (which points to a flat earth model), the celestial hierarchy, the stars, spheres, spirits, beautiful intelligences, angels and the divine throne:
One thus finds contemplations upon or discussions of the term, as in dictionaries, here from 1813: "Deference is an ascensive, condescension a descensive
, and complaisance a level attentiveness.
4) The moderately descensive phase: Elmer Gantry (1927), Dodsworth (1929).
5) The descensive phase, comprising smaller peaks: everything that followed.
The last verses may speak of the silence of celestial tears uniting heaven and earth in man's heart, thus leading the soul ("the eye") in a paradoxical descensive
ascent ("lift down the eye"): the consciousness descends from the brain (the spaces of reason) to the spaces of the heart (of emotion, the Uranian), uniting in man's heart the human with the divine, the natural with the supernatural.