Paradise Lost Hero

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Devilish Ways or Heroic Displays

From an early age we are familiarized with the abstraction of a hero. The concept of a hero is something that is not defined with any amount of ease. Children are told tales of men and women whom, despite all odds to the contrary, overcome whatever obstacle that is preventing them from reaching their ultimate goal. For a person or a force to be accredited with the term “hero,” they need to remain indomitable in an occurrence of perplexity. Historically, heroes rarely make concessions to conciliate with their adversary; in contrast however, they overcome their opponent. A heroic quality is the ability to lead and persevere to accomplish any task that may consume you. One should not assume that the task a hero is trying to accomplish can not be for the betterment of the hero themselves. The character of Satan in Paradise Lost, is often the centre of much disputation. A simple way to describe Satan in Paradise lost would be to generalize him as the antagonist. Contradictory, however Satan arguably shows a copious amount of qualities that are similar to those that are often attributed to heroes. One stereotypical quality associated with a hero is leadership, a quality that is characteristic of Satan. Within his group of fallen angels, he is superior and possesses the strongest influence in decision making. He makes orders and does not receive them. Satan is not alone in his aspirations to seek revenge against God. He has a second in command, Beelzebub whose desire to overpower God is similar to that of Satan. Satan has followers that adhere to his wishes including Beelzebub. After the fallen angles are banished from heaven, they are all tattered and in great amounts of pain. Despite their obvious poor condition, when Satan demands “[a]wake, arise, or be for ever fallen!”[i] (Milton 11) they immediately obey as “[t]hey heard, and were abashed, and up they sprung” (Milton 11). They intentionally disregard their obvious pains and...
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