Paradise Lost by John Milton: An Analysis

Topics: Epic poetry, John Milton, Paradise Lost Pages: 6 (1307 words) Published: January 22, 2015

Paradise Lost by John Milton. My aim is to do an essay to analyze Paradise Lost by the English poet John Milton. I want to concentrate in the three important new concepts which appear, for the first time, in the 17th century which are reflected in Milton’s Paradise Lost: man, nature, and experience. The 17 th century was a time when a great many issues that had arisen since the Reformation came to ahead: religion, politics, power and freedom were questioned as never before. John Milton was born in London in 1608 at the height oh the Protestant Reformation in England. His father had left Roman Catholicism and Milton was raised Protestand, with a heavy tendence toward Puritanism. Milton excelled in languages such as Latin, Greek, and Hebrew and in classical studies. For more than 20 years, Milton set aside poetry to write political and religious pamphlets for the cause of puritanism. For a time, he served as Secretary for Foreign Tongues under Cromwell. Milton was a mixed product of his time. On the one hand, as a humanist, he fought for religious tolerance and believed that there was something inherently valuable in man. As a puritan, however, he believed that the Bible was the answer and the guide to all. Where the Bible didn’t afford an answer, milton would turn to reason. At the end of the war, milton was imprisoned for a short time for his views. In 1660, he emerged blind and disillusioned with the England he saw around him. Milton died of kidney failure in 1674 and was buried in the church of St. Giles in London.

Paradise Lost is considered to be his master piece. It’s a biblical epic poem. It will be the first time in which an author will mix the epic, which was related to man with religion, which was related to God. All the texts written before Milton dealt with politics (king) or religion (God), but now something appears in the middle: the man and his experience. Paradise Lost is written in blank verse, since it was the only way in which the author could capture his experience (realism) in his work. The possibility of rhyme is lost because it bothers in the process of perception. Now, the poet does not want to write a word which rhyme with the previous one because, maybe, that is not the word to express what he really feels. The blank verse gives the poet more freedom to express his feelings and maybe that can represent the freedom which Milton was defending in his time. Milton used latin syntax which was useful to him to create his own syntax. This use shows that he was influenced by the classical poets but at the same time, it shows that English language was not important yet. As an epic poem, we find a hero (God) who represents the right side, and an antihero (Satan) who represents the evil. The main characters are disobedient, and revolutionary: Adan and Satan are punished because of their rebelliousness. The evil characters are more credible than those who represent the right side. The character of Satan can represent two kind of different person. On the one hand, Satan can be related to the monarchs who ruled during the 17 th century. From Milton’s point of view they were tyrants who were destroying England and they were only worried about getting their own interests:

Honour and Empire with revenge enlarg’d, by conquering this new world.
So fpake the Fiend, and with neceffitie, the tyrants plea, excus’d his devilifh deeds. On the other hand, Satan can be related to Milton himself since, as Satan, he was disobedient and revolutionary. Milton was considered to be an heretic. He denied the Trinity, he was against bishops, he defended divorce, freedom of the press and the regicide . Satan wants to take revenge on God not by using his force but...

Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • John Milton Paradise Lost Essay
  • The Political and Religious Context of Paradise Lost John Milton
  • Essay about Milton Paradise Lost Commentary
  • John Milton (1608-1674)- Paradise Lost Essay
  • Essay about Jon Milton Paradise Lost
  • John Milton Essay
  • Essay about Paradise Lost
  • "Paradise Lost" by John Milton/ the Transformation of Satan Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free