Paradise Lost by John Milton: Analysis Essay
Paradise Lost by John Milton is an interesting story that vividly captures Satan’s supposedly rebellious acts against God, his subsequent expulsion from the heavenly kingdom together with the rebel angels, and how Satan convinced Adam and Eve in eating the forbidden fruit which led in their expulsion from the garden as captured by the title of the novel. This article highlights on two critical settings as depicted in Book 1 and 3 for their role in introducing the reader into the interesting piece acting as a reference point to further analyze the subsequent setting of these particular poem with specific roles played in these scenes as suggested by Milton.
The author starts the poem by providing a classical setting in Hell’s Lake of fire where Satan and his rebel angels find themselves helpless after being thrown out of heaven. Milton’s notable characters in this scene can be quickly associated with the devil and include; Osiris, Baal, Astarte, Moloch Thammuz among others. Satan and his team lament the situation they are in. However, this may seem to be the situation, they fail to acknowledge defeat and promise to make their new life worth of meaning, and further laments “the mind in its own place and in itself can make a heaven of a hell…” (Milton I. 254-255) The names of these characters are in fact reference to other gods whom humans have at one time worshiped, for instance Milton makes reference to Osiris, Isis and Osus whom the Egyptians worshiped in various forms and sorceries and further says that “…and her priests to seek their wandering gods disguised in brutish forms…” (I. 480-481)
The acts of Satan and his accomplices seeks to further provide a valid reason for existence of evil and different tribulations and suffering that bequeath man as a result of Satan “That with reiterated crimes he might heap on himself damnation, while he sought evil to others” (I. 215-216)
Book three is a literary piece of writing that is well set in heaven and ends when Satan flies approaching the earth. Important characters in this setting include God, God the son, Satan and Archangel Uriel who is identified as warden of the Sun. God act in a manner to disclaim responsibility for what has become of Satan, he asserts that “whom no bounds, prescribed no bars of hell nor all the chains that were heaped upon him.” (Milton III. 82-83) God actions further suggest that humanity’s fall is a free will and does not tolerate such, yet God the son seeks to offer justice and protection to humanity and asks God to reconsider this judgment and save humanity from Satan, he laments, “That far from thee, Father, who art judge… and judgest only right.” (III. 155-156) God responds that salvation has been provided for man and wants to use it so that his creation can be dependent on him and that there is punishment for every sinful act of humanity. The scene ends when the son of God plays a volunteering role to save mankind.
Milton introduces us to another setting when Satan approaches earth. As Satan stops over at the Sun where he meets Archangel Uriel, Satan plays his tricks on Uriel and appears as a lesser angel only interested in adventuring into God’s new creation of planet earth. Satan outwits Uriel and unaware of Satan’s evil plans, Uriel guides Satan on how to reach earth. Interestingly the first stop for Satan is ‘Niphates.’(699) this plot portrays acts of Satan as cunning and witty who can present himself in many forms just to accomplish his interests of deception and evilness.
Milton, John. Paradise Lost: A Poem in Twelve Books. Ed. Henry Warren Torrey. Oxford: Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1869.Print.