John Milton Paradise Lost Analysis

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Grandiose, thought-provoking, formulaic: these are all adjectives evoked within us by epic poems and tales, driven by an unexplainable connection to a hero who through conquering strife and enduring tribulation ultimately is liberated and subsequently hailed and praised. From Gilgamesh to Beowulf to Hector and Odysseus, epic heroes and the stories that accompanied them have long driven themselves into the fabric of cultures creating a lure of nobleness, achievement, and godliness that ordinary men strived for and worshiped.
Verbally dictated in blank verse by a blind man in the 17th century, John Milton’s Paradise Lost takes no liberties to maintain the ideas of the long-standing epic poem. Instead, he throws tradition into the fiery depths of hell and manages not only to thoroughly entertain his readers but completely reshape the definition and context of the epic poem and the place of the author in such a work. Within Book III from lines 1-56, Milton opens with a plea or even a prayer of sorts through a voice separate from him yet equivalent to Satan; a poet’s voice. It isn’t only this voice that shapes what Milton is trying to do he bolsters this by incorporating a bounty of ethereal, holy imagery of light and God versus that of darkness and blindness. As a result, creating an opening that brings questions of how close Satan and Milton are in relation to one another as well as what Milton accomplishes by making this parallel. Through the use of imagery and narrative
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