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The heroic song in Paradise lost and Paradise regained Hilder, Monika Barbara 1983

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THE HEROIC SONG IN PARADISE LOST AND PARADISE REGAINED By " MONIKA BARBARA HILDER B.A., The Univ e r s i t y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1980 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT.OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of English We accept .this t h e s i s as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r t l 1983 (_) Monika Barbara Hilder In presenting t h i s thesis i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of B r i t i s h Columbia, I agree that the Library s h a l l make i t f r e e l y available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of t h i s thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. I t i s understood that copying or publication of t h i s thesis for f i n a n c i a l gain s h a l l not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The University of B r i t i s h Columbia 1956 Main Mall Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 DE-6 (3/81) i i ABSTRACT In the following study, I propose to pursue the subject of heroism in Milton's Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained. The M i l t o n i c d e l i n e a t i o n of heroic v i r t u e in these two works emerges from the tension between seventeenth-century E n g l i s h Puritanism and the strong influence of six.t;eent;h-centuxy Renaissance humanism—-between the r e l i g i o u s view that human v i r t u e i s contingent upon the a c t i v e power of d i v i n e beneficence' and the more secular b e l i e f in the capacity of natural man to assert his e s s e n t i a l d i g n i t y . Conscious of t h i s ostensible dichotomy between the temporal and the eternal maintained by secular humanism and s t r i c t ' P u r i t a n i s m r e s p e c t i v e l y , Milton \ transcends the impasse in a r e l i g i o u s v i s i o n of human grandeur. In a Baroque fusion of apparent opposites, Milton synthesizes d i v i n e grace and f r e e w i l l : God's w i l l d o v e t a i l s with man's, and the two are, for a l l intents and purposes, interdependent, inseparable. And t h i s synthesis i s founded on the c r u c i a l d i s t i n c t i o n between theocentric and egocentric humanism—the f i r s t recognizing that the centre for man . i s God, and the second, asserting that the i n d i v i d u a l i s the centre and measure of a l l things. Man manifests the heroic song in d i r e c t proportion to h i s t h e o c e n t r i c i t y ; h i s magnanimity i s contingent upon h i s moral o r i e n t a t i o n , and i t i s t h i s r e l i g i o u s humanism which i n s p i r e s Milton's works. Thus, the.theocentric heroic v i s i o n i s a conscious transcendence of the heroic norm inherited from Western t r a d i t i o n . In general terms, an epic poem i s a n a r r a t i v e of considerable length in which the main character or characters demonstrate in deeds, us u a l l y of a v i o l e n t nature and d i r e c t l y r e l a t e d to war, t h e i r capacity to r e a l i z e a l e v e l of human achievement that i s "larger t h a n . l i f e . " But Milton, in h i s choice to write c l a s s i c a l epic on a C h r i s t i a n theme, consciously alludes to the Graeco-Roman precedent i n order to e s t a b l i s h a new, revolutionary heroic ethos. The c l a s s i c a l heroic norm, s p e c i f i c a l l y i l l u s t r a t e d i n the I l i a d and the Aeneid, c e l e b r a t i n g deeds motivated l a r g e l y by personal ambition and I l l r e s u l t i n g in a recognizable secular glory, i s wholly inadequate to Milton's v i s i o n . Milton thus r e j e c t s the Western heroic t r a d i t i o n , describing mythic, "superhuman" feats only to transcend them. He demonstrates the i n f e r i o r i t y of the "long and tedious havoc [caused by] fabl'd Knights./ In B a t t l e s feign'd" (Paradise Lost, IX, 30-31) in c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to "the better f o r t i t u d e / Of Patience and Heroic Martyrdom i hitherto] Unsung" (11. _31-33)"'. While the more p r i m i t i v e c l a s s i c a l epic i s o l a t e s only the value of worldly success, M i l t o n , the product of a C h r i s t i a n age, i d e n t i f i e s and embraces a heroic ethos celebrating the sacredness of the human s p i r i t . In Paradise Lost and in Paradise Regained, Milton orchestrates h i s epic v i s i o n through Satan, the Son, and Adam and Eve. Satan he creates as the embodiment of the c l a s s i c a l i d e a l , underscoring the p a r a l l e l p o r t r a i t in d i r e c t a l l u s i o n to "the wrath/ Of stern A c h i l l e s " (PL, IX,. 14-15), the "rage/ Of Turnus" (11. 16-17), and "Neptune 1s i r e or Juno's" (1. 18). In Satan's f u t i l e heroism, Milton d e f l a t e s the v a l i d i t y of "might" not subject" to the character and w i l l of d i v i n e beneficence. The Son, l a t e r the incarnate Christ in Paradise Regained, i s the one true hero who f u l l y embodies Milton's new and "better f o r t i t u d e , " the i n i t i a t o r of the heroic song. While the c l a s s i c a l s p i r i t h a i l s human achievement for i t s own sake,. Milton eulogizes: in the Son the paradox that what is. most often considered weak exemplifies. . greater s p i r i t u a l strength—"By Humiliation and strong Sufferance:/ His weakness s h a l l o'ercome Satanic strength" (Paradise Regained, I, 160-161). And i n man Milton consolidates h i s view that genuine heroism i s the exercise of moral magnanimity i n the cosmic b a t t l e between good an d . e v i l . Edenic man knows that b l i s s i s contingent upon his obedience, and f a l l e n man, r a i s i n g himself from the depths of despair, r e a l i z e s that the pursuit of s p i r i t u a l heroism coincides with his possession of "A paradise within... happier f a r " (PL, XII, 587). TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract Chapter I: The Heroic I d o l : "strength from Truth 1 d i v i d e d . " Chapter I I : The Heroic Image: "His weakness s h a l l 34 o'ercome Satanic strength." Chapter I I I : The Heroic Achievement: "A paradise within 66 ... happier f a r . " Conclusion \ 114 Notes 117 Bibliography 122 1 CHAPTER I: The Heroic I d o l : "strength from Truth divided.". Fundamental to Milton's revolutionary v i s i o n of heroism' i n both Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained i s the c o n t r o v e r s i a l f i g u r e of Satan'. Satan exemplifies the v i o l e n t c l a s s i c a l heroism f u t i l e in a C h r i s t i a n universe; t h i s c o n f l i c t between c l a s s i c a l and C h r i s t i a n ethics has raised two major c r i t i c a l responses to Satan. F i r s t , as C..S. Lewis, implies, Satan i s a contemptible f o o l deserving d i v i n e laughter.^ Secondly, as A.J.A. Waldock suggests, he i s the sole epic hero in an arena populated with 2 . ' . . ' • • i n s i p i d and ignoble characters. But Milton's d e p i c t i o n of Satanic energy defie s the narrow and apparently, mutually exclusive categories of "hero or 3 f o o l " f i r s t defined by S i r Walter Raleigh. The t i t l e " f o o l " implies that Satan i s i n t e l l e c t u a l l y i n f e r i o r , which he i s not, and the c r i t i c a l approach i s o l a t i n g h i s r e b e l l i o u s stance as the sole heroic a c t i v i t y in epics c r i t i c i z i n g that very heroic convention i s equally absurd. A discussion of the Satanic r o l e i n Milton's epic v i s i o n must consider the nature of the secondary epic where i t i s the poetic custom to delineate an older heroic ethos which the poet at once r e j e c t s . Satan, l i k e Turnus of the Aeneid, displays a magnificent heroism which i s , t r a g i c a l l y , opposed to the laws of the universe and therefore morally f o o l i s h . The gl o r i o u s antagonist of heaven in both Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained embodies an outmoded heroic ethos and, i n the poet's v i s i o n , t h i s t r a g i c hero i s the moral f o o l . . Milton unmistakably creates Satan as the embodiment of the c l a s s i c a l ideal,.underscoring the p a r a l l e l p o r t r a i t i n d i r e c t a l l u s i o n to "the wrath/ Of stern A c h i l l e s " (PL, IX, 14-15), the "rage/ Of Turnus f o r Lavinia disespous'd" (IX, 16-17), and "Neptune's i r e or Juno's" (IX, 18). Satan e x h i b i t s the combined m a r t i a l prowess and e g o i s t i c wrath of an A c h i l l e s . He surpasses Odyssean deception i n the accomplishment of h i s grand enterprise the beguilement of innocent man. John M. Steadman even compares him to Aeneas concealing ac t u a l despair from his companions in an attempt to r a i s e 2 ' 4 t h e i r s p i r i t s , knowing his own high words to be f a l s e . But in the s i g n i f i -cance of h i s c l a s s i c a l p o r t r a i t Satan i s closer to Turnus as the t r a g i c anti-type of the espoused heroic ethos. And Milton chooses to sing an "Heroic Song" (IX, 25) which i s "more Heroic" (IX, 14) than the combined v i o l e n t rage of Satan's predecessors. Relegating c l a s s i c a l m a r t i a l valour to the l e v e l of f a b l e , the unreal and i n s u b s t a n t i a l — Not sedulous by Nature to i n d i t e Wars, h i t h e r t o the only Argument Heroic deem'd, chief mastery to d i s s e c t With long and tedious havoc f a b l ' d Knights In B a t t l e s feign'd (IX, 27-31) — M i l t o n elevates rather "the better f o r t i t u d e / Of Patience and Heroic Martyrdom [ h i t h e r t o ] Unsung" (IX, 31-33). In Satan's f u t i l e heroism Milton d i s p e l s the v a l i d i t y of "might" which i s not subject to the character and w i l l of d i v i n e beneficence. Satan i s true to the c l a s s i c a l heroic code where action i s motivated by the love of secular glory, personal honour and pride, and, in Milton's universe t h i s f i d e l i t y to the e g o t i s t i c a l s e l f i s h e l l — a s Satan exclaims, "Which way I f l y i s H e l l ; myself am H e l l " (IV, 75). Satan i s the parody of genuine heroism who bears only the "Semblance of worth, not substance" ( I , 529), the demonic anti-hero s e l f - r a i s e d "with calumnious Art / Of counterfeited t r u t h " (V, 770-771) . As Steadman observes, Satan presents the fraudulent version of genuine heroism which finds i t s summation in the Son: in c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to the Son's i d e n t i t y as the "True Image of the Father" (PR, IV, 596) , Satan i s the magnificent but i n f e r n a l " I d o l of Majesty Divine" (FL, VI, 101). 5 Thus, in Paradise Lost, Milton orchestrates h i s epic v i s i o n in both the d e l i n e a t i o n of the f u t i l i t y of. m a r t i a l valour for i t s own sake and i n Satan's t r a g i c awareness of that f u t i l i t y . 3 In Paradise Lost, the moral d e f l a t i o n of Satanic heroism i s woven into the very grandeur of his c l a s s i c a l p o r t r a i t . The f a l l e n Arch-angel i s "beyond/ Compare of mortal prowess" ( I , 587-588), the epitome of conventional heroic ardour: ... he above the rest In shape and gesture proudly eminent -Stood l i k e a Tow'r; his form had yet not l o s t A l l her O r i g i n a l brightness, nor appear'd Less than Arch-Angel ruin'd, and th'excess Of Glory obscur'd .... (I , 589-594) Satan i s the pre-eminent leader asserting' himself "with Monarchal pride/ Conscious of highest worth" ( I I , 428-429), the seemingly i n v i n c i b l e hero disp l a y i n g the c l a s s i c a l q u a l i t i e s "Of dauntless courage, and considerate Pride/ Waiting revenge" ( I , 603-604). And Milton's usage of the extended epic s i m i l e depicts Satan's superior m a r t i a l grandeur. ... the superior Fiend Was moving toward the shore; his ponderous s h i e l d Ethereal temper, massy, large and round, Behind him cast; the broad circumference Hung on h i s shoulders l i k e the Moon, whose Orb Through Optic Glass the Tuscan A r t i s t views At Ev'ning from the top of Fesole, ^ Or i n Valdarno, to descry new Lands, -Rivers or Mountains i n her spotty Globe. His Spear, to equal which the t a l l e s t Pine Hewn on Norwegian h i l l s , to be the Mast Of some great Ammiral, were but a wand, 4 He walkt w i t h to support uneasy steps ( I , 283-295) Determined to counter s u f f e r i n g by sheer endurance and the e x e r c i s e of m i l i t a r y might, the Arch-Angel i n r u i n cuts a g l o r i o u s f i g u r e . He c a l l s to h i s "Abject and l o s t " ( I , 312) f o l l o w e r s w i t h a "General's V o i c e " ( I , 338) "so loud, that a l l the hollow Deep/ Of H e l l resound[s]" ( I , 314-315): " P r i n c e s , P o t e n t a t e s , / Warriors .... Awake, a r i s e , or be f o r ever f a l l ' n " ( I , 315-316, 330). But M i l t o n ' s usage of the extended epic s i m i l e to portray a l s o the malign nature of Satanic grandeur undercuts h i s h e r o i c stance. With Head u p - l i f t above the wave, and eyes That s p a r k l i n g b l a z ' d , h i s other P a r t s besides Prone on the Flood, extended long and l a r g e Lay f l o a t i n g many a rood, i n bulk as huge . As whom the Fables name of monstrous s i z e , T i t a n i a n , or Earth-born, that warr'd on Jove, B r i a r e o s or Typhon, whom the Den By ancient Tarsus h e l d , or that Sea-beast Leviathan, which God of a l l h i s works r Created hugest that swim th'Ocean stream: Him haply slumb'ring on the Norway foam The P i l o t of some small night-founder'd S k i f f , Deeming some I s l a n d , o f t , as Seamen t e l l , " With f i x e d Anchor i n h i s s c a l y r i n d Moors by h i s s i d e under the Lee, w h i l e Night I n v e s t s the Sea, and wished Morn delays .... ( I , 193-208) As A.S.P. Woodhouse e l a b o r a t e s , M i l t o n compares Satan's g i g a n t i c s t a t u r e to beings who are a l s o the enemies of God, defeated and subject to punishment: 5 . Briareus who, according to V i r g i l , strove against the thunderbolts Typhon the serpent so huge that he reached the s t a r s , but Zeus overcame and imprisoned him; Leviathan, c a l l e d by Isaiah the serpent and dragon that i s in the sea'and said to be reserved  for God's s p e c i a l vengeance, but more commonly thought of (and by Milton) as the whale. ^ Milton's c l a s s i c a l hero i s the Arch-deceiver, and those readers who see him as the sole epic hero i n an arena populated with i n s i p i d and ignoble characters are l i k e the deluded mariners mistaking the Sea-beast Leviathan for a p r o t e c t i v e i s l a n d . In the character of Satan, Milton d e f l a t e s the c l a s s i c a l v e i n of egocentric humanism. Satan extols to Beelzebub the heroic nature of his own r e b e l l i o u s n e s s — " t h a t f i x t mind/ And high d i s d a i n , from sense of i n j u r ' d merit,/ That with the mightiest r a i s ' d me to contend" ( I , 97-99)--and argues for the v i r t u e of i r r e c o n c i l a b l e revenge: What though the f i e l d be l o s t ? A l l i s not l o s t ; the unconquerable W i l l , And study of revenge, immortal hate, And courage never to submit or y i e l d : And what i s else not to be overcome? (I , 105-109) He assumes the r o l e as the very a n t i t h e s i s of God, bent on a course of negative c r e a t i v i t y counter to the moral order. Rejecting the weakness cent-^ r a l to theocentric heroism, Satan confirms to Beelzebub h i s resolve to r e s i s t God with either' v i o l e n c e or treachery. ... to be weak i s miserable Doing or S u f f e r i n g : but of t h i s be sure, To do aught good never w i l l be our task, But ever to do i l l our sole d e l i g h t , As being the contrary to his high w i l l Whom we r e s i s t . If then his Providence Out of our e v i l seek to bring f o r t h good, Our labor must be to pervert that end, And out of good s t i l l to f i n d means of e v i l .... ( I , 157-165) Whereas the God of love p r o t e c t i v e l y creates the universe, "as with a Mantle" ( I I I , 110) investing l i f e into chaos, Satan i s motivated by malice "to confound the race/ Of mankind i n one root, and Earth with H e l l / To mingle and involve" ( I I , 382-384), to rob man of h i s " b l i s s f u l Seat" (1,5). But the f a c t that the egocentric energy which Satan prizes as h i s "Glory" (I , 110) i s animated only by whatever r e s o l u t i o n he may gain from despair ( I , 191) condemns him. In a C h r i s t i a n universe, h e l l i s h glory i s f i n a l l y impotent: "Thir s p i t e s t i l l serves/ His glory to augment" ( I I , 385-386). The reader experiences Satan "Vaunting aloud, but rackt with deep despair" (I , 126), and i t i s c l e a r that the Arch-angel i n r u i n , both t r a g i c and formidable, i s engaged in a s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e enterprise. Milton's i n v a l i d a t i o n of c l a s s i c a l humanism i s further underlined i n the p o r t r a i t of Satan endorsing the Romantic delusion.that only the autonomous i n d i v i d u a l enjoys l i b e r t y . In the speech o f - h i s r e c o n c i l i a t i o n to h e l l ( I , 242-270), Satan voices an,indomitable determination to overcome damnation i t s e l f , but h i s contradictory r h e t o r i c undermines the assumed heroism. His opening words appear to assert a s u p e r l a t i v e example of c l a s s i c a l courage: Is t h i s the Region, t h i s the S o i l , the Clime, Said then the l o s t Arch-angel, t h i s the seat That we must change for Heav'n, t h i s mournful gloom For that c e l e s t i a l l i g h t ? ' Be i t so .... ... Farewell happy F i e l d s Where Joy for ever dwells: H a i l horrors, h a i l 7 In f e r n a l world, and thou profoundest H e l l Receive thy new Possessor .... (I, 242-245, 249-252) . . Satan f i r s t d i s t i n g u i s h e s between "mournful gloom" and " c e l e s t i a l l i g h t , " acknowledging the eternal l o s s of joy in exchange for the horrors of h e l l , then proceeds to a s t o i c embrace of doom. But h i s subsequent d e n i a l of t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n between heaven and h e l l throws the heroic r h e t o r i c into question Satan eulogizes h i s presumption that the s e l f i s the centre of the universe, that personal l i b e r t y i s the r e s u l t of autonomy from God, and that moral laws are subject to the i n d i v i d u a l ' s w i l l . The mind i s it's own place, and i n i t s e l f , Can make a Heav'n of H e l l , a H e l l of Heav'n .... Here at least We s h a l l be free ... Here we may reign secure, and in my choice To rei g n i s worth ambition though in H e l l : Better to reign in H e l l , than serve in Heav'n. (I, 254-255, 258-259, 261-263) But the euphoria generated by the r h e t o r i c i a n countering the "Universe of death...worse/ Than Fables yet have feign'd, or fear conceived" ( I I , 622, 626-627) with c l a s s i c a l humanism i s s h o r t - l i v e d . The s e l f - d e c l a r e d master of h i s f a t e has already undercut h i s own argument, and h i s weak conclusion completes the process. The h e l l b r i e f l y embraced as the seat of a worthy' empire i s again r e f e r r e d to as " t h ' o b l i v i o u s Pool" (1,266), " t h i s unhappy Mansion" (1.268),, and an i r r e s o l u t e Satan concludes the fraudulent heroic d e c l a r a t i o n by asking Beelzebub i f they ought not "to t r y what may be yet/ Regain'd i n Heav'n, or what more l o s t i n H e l l ? " ( I , 269-270) Satan thus attempts to assert the supremacy of his ego through a r h e t o r i c a l equation of heaven and h e l l , but h i s own understanding of the moral universe d e f l a t e s 8 the f i e r c e n e s s of h i s claim to "make a Heav'n of H e l l , a H e l l of Heav'n." S i m i l a r l y , Satan i n v a l i d a t e s h i s own argument on the i n d i v i d u a l ' s l i b e r t y i n the war in heaven. In the speech c a l l i n g h i s congregation to cast off the "Yoke" (V,786) of submission, Satan argues that the introduction of the Son c o n s t i t u t e s the beginning of a monarchy which would deprive angels of t h e i r r i g h t f u l l i b e r t y . But in introducing the democratic argument Satan infuses h i e r a r c h i c a l language, thus suggesting a t t r a c t i v e e q u a l i t y while maintaining h i s own p o s i t i o n . The l i n e s " i f not equal a l l , yet f r e e , / Equally free; for Orders and Degrees/ Jar not with l i b e r t y , but w e l l c o n s i s t " (V, 791-793) i l l u s t r a t e the deceptive language which, i r o n i c a l l y , c o n t r a d i c t s the r e b e l l i o u s argument. Again, Satan attacks the Son's r u l e in democratic language—"Who can i n reason then or r i g h t assume/ Monarchy over such as l i v e by r i g h t / His equals" (V, 794-796)—while prudently protecting himself with the subclause " i f i n power and splendor l e s s , / In freedom equal?" (V, 796-797) The irony of Satan's argument on the preferable state of self-government i s that the l i c e n s e to exercise power i s always an i d o l , never the genuine l i b e r t y enjoyed by u n f a l i e n beings. As A.S.P. Woodhpuse argues, the Romantic conclusion that Satan i s the hero of Paradise Lost " o b l i t e r a t e s . Milton's oft-repeated distinction.between l i b e r t y and l i c e n s e , hi s cherished p r i n c i p l e that only the good can be t r u l y f r e e . " ^ And in Book VI, Abdiel voices the poet's view that r e b e l l i o n i s only a f a l s e l i b e r t y , that Satan s u f f e r s from enslavement to the ego: This i s servitude, To serve th' u n w i s e , or him who hath r e b e l l ' d Against h i s worthier, as thine now serve thee Thyself not f r e e , but to t h y s e l f e n t h r a l l ' d .... ( I I , 178-181) Milton's i r o n i c d e l i n e a t i o n of Satan's m a r t i a l pre-eminence conveys h i s r o l e as the fraudulent hero. The moral context of Satan's presentation as 9 the epitome of conventional ardour d e f l a t e s h i s exalted p o r t r a i t . As Stanley Eugene Fish also observes, the subversion of the i d e a l of m a r t i a l valour begins as early as when Satan "Darts h i s experienc't eye"(I, 568) through the armed f i l e s of h i s legions posing " i n guise/ Of Warriors o l d " (11. 564-565): Thir number l a s t he sums. And now h i s heart Distends with pride, and hard'ning in h i s strength G l o r i e s : For never since created man, Met such embodied force, as nam'd with these Could merit more than that small in f a n t r y 8 Warr'd on by Cranes .... (I, 571-576) Satan's b a t t a l i o n surpasses the merit of "noblest temper Heroes o l d " who "instead of rage/ Deliberate v a l o r breath'd" (11. 552-554), but the reference to c l a s s i c a l heroes as "that small i n f a n t r y / Warr'd on by Cranes" (11. 575-576) r i d i c u l e s the d i s t i n c t i o n . In extending "that small i n f a n t r y / Warr'd on by Cranes" (11. 575-576) by the subsequent catalogue of mythic and h i s t o r i c heroes and armies, Milton d i s p e l s the very i d e a l of m a r t i a l valour i n which Satan i s pre-eminent. ... though a l l the Giant brood Of Phlegra with t h ' Heroic Race were j o i n ' d That fought at Thebes and Ilium, on each si d e V Mixt with a u x i l i a r Gods; and what resounds In Fable or Romance of Uther's Son Begirt with B r i t i s h and Armoric Knight; And a l l who since, Baptiz'd or I n f i d e l Jousted i n Aspramant or Montalban, Damasco, or Marocco, or Trebisond, Or whom B i s e r t a sent from A f r i c shore • - 10 When Charlemain with a l l h i s Peerage f e l l By Fontarabbla. Thus f a r these beyond Compare of m o r t a l prowess .... (11. 576-588) . Without exception, M i l t o n r e l e g a t e s m a r t i a l g l o r y to the delusory s t u f f of "Fable or Romance" (1. 580). With one stroke,'"Baptiz'd or I n f i d e l " (1.582), he d e f l a t e s even the aura of r e l i g i o u s i d e a l i s m surrounding warfare. The t r a d i t i o n a l use of the epic catalogue to e u l o g i z e m i l i t a r y conquest serves here to i n v a l i d a t e the conventional i d e a l i t s e l f . The l a s t item—"When. Charlemain w i t h a l l h i s Peerage f e l l " (1. 5 8 6 ) — s h a t t e r s whatever grandeur these names may suggest to the reader: m a r t i a l warfare i s the t e x t u r e of the f a l l e n world, and i t s s o - c a l l e d g l o r i e s can b r i n g no genuine v i c t o r y over the human c o n d i t i o n . The f a c t that Satan's b a t t a l i o n ranks "beyond/Compare of m o r t a l prowess" (11.587-588) s i g n i f i e s t h e i r condemnation. The poet reminds the reader that the Satanic empire founded on m a r t i a l grandeur i s merely a ,"God-like i m i t a t e d S t a t e " ( I I , 511), a sham parodying d i v i n e g l o r y . Pandemonium i s a " S t r a w - b u i l t C i t a d e l " ( I , 773), a c i t a d e l that appears grand but i s i n s u b s t a n t i a l , a fraudulent v e r s i o n of the grandeur of God's c i t a d e l and one that i s i n h a b i t e d by parpdic angels who "to smallest forms/ Reduc'd t h i r shapes immense" ( I , 789-790). Here the i n f e r n a l "Champions b o l d " ( 1 . 763) are b e t t e r compared to bees (1. 768) than awarded the l a u r e l s of epic heroes: So t h i c k the aery crowd Swarm'd and were s t r a i t ' n ' d ; t i l l the s i g n a l g i v ' n Behold a wonder! they but now who seem'd In bigness t o surpass Earth's Giant Sons Now l e s s than, smallest Dwarfs, i n narrow room Throng numberless, l i k e that Pigmean Race 11 Beyond the Indian Mount .... (11. 775-781) The apparent s u p e r i o r i t y of c l a s s i c a l m a r t i a l valour i s , i n Milton's universe, e s s e n t i a l l y t r i v i a l . The comic d e f l a t i o n of i n f e r n a l heroism at the end of Book I foreshadows 'the c l i m a c t i c metamorphosis i n Book X. Like the "Pigmean Race" (T, 780) .ignorant of the fraudulent nature of "Thir Straw-built C i t a d e l " ( I , 773), Satan ends h i s exultant n a r r a t i v e on the f a l l of man with the Son's curse: True i s , mee also he hath judg'd, or rather Mee not, but the brute Serpent i n whose shape Man I deceiv'd ... ... I am to bruise h i s heel; His Seed, when i s not set, s h a l l bruise my head: A World who would not purchase with a bruise, Or much more grievous pain? (X, 494-496,.498-501) He f a i l s to r e a l i z e though that the consequences of h i s pseudo-heroic ex p l o i t are not endurable pain but f i n a l damnation, and h i s erroneous expectation of "high applause" (X, 505) i s best answered with the f u l l irony of "A dismal u n i v e r s a l h i s s , the sound/ Of public scorn" (X, 508-509). In h i s involuntary degradation to "A Monstrous Serpent on h i s B e l l y prone" (X, 514), Satan experi-ences the implications of the curse he had f a i l e d to comprehend. And A.J.A. Waldock, arguing that Satan in Paradise Lost i s a f i g u r e who does not degen-erate but i s degraded by the poetic method, charges Milton with manipulating - 9 t h i s metamorphosis by using the technique of a "comic cartoon." , But i n Milton's i r o n i c p o r t r a i t of Satanic heroism, t h i s metamorphosis i s rather the" successful comedy of poetic j u s t i c e . Answering Waldock's complaint on the technique of a "comic cartoon," Steadman points out that the demonic d i s f i g -urement was a recurrent convention i n Medieval and Renaissance art and 1.2 l i t e r a t u r e , arguing that Milton was a c t u a l l y innovative in delaying the trans-it; formation from the r e v o l t u n t i l a f t e r the f a l l of man. Furthermore, Satan's f i n a l metamorphosis into a serpent "exposes his 'godlike' pretensions as f a l s e and h i s apparent heroism as brutishness;" the c l i m a c t i c penalty "repre-sents Milton's condemnation of v i r t u a l l y the e n t i r e epic t r a d i t i o n , the f i n a l humiliation of the conventional heroic ideal.""'''1" Satan's degeneration i s the reverse of man's p o t e n t i a l movement "From shadowy Types to Truth, from Flesh to S p i r i t , / From imposition of s t r i c t Laws, to f r e e / Acceptance of large Grace" (XII, 3 03-305): Satan exchanges the genuine freedom of man with God, thus f a l l i n g from h i s o r i g i n a l i d e n t i t y to a mere shadow of himself. The f o l l y of m a r t i a l valour divorced from i t s moral centre i s acutely evident i n the war i n heaven. As Raphael i n s t r u c t s Adam, i t would be a mistake to i n t e r p r e t the war in heaven too l i t e r a l l y . Raphael asks "how s h a l l I r e l a t e / To human sense t h ' i n v i s i b l e e x p l o i t s / Of warring S p i r i t s " (V, 564-566), s t a t i n g that h i s account i s an accommodation of c e l e s t i a l events to the scope of human cari vprehension: ... yet for thy good -This i s dispens't, and what surmounts the reach Of human sense, I s h a l l delineate so, By l i k ' n i n g s p i r i t u a l to corporeal forms, As may express them best, though what i f Earth Be but a shadow of Heav'n, and things therein Each to other l i k e , more than on Earth i s thought? (V, 570-576) Thus, the war i n heaven should be read as a d i v i n e a l l e g o r y where the meaning rather then the form i s c r u c i a l . In t h i s sense,' Statn's grim c l a s s i c a l war-f a r e i n a universe where s t r i f e i s e s s e n t i a l l y s p i r i t u a l i s p a r t i c u l a r l y l u d i c r o u s . The comparative d e s c r i p t i o n of the c e l e s t i a l and r e b e l l i o u s armies at 13 the onset of the war i n heaven underscores the r i d i c u l o u s . n a t u r e of the c l a s s i c a l e n t e r p r i s e waged i n a moral u n i v e r s e . The heavenly army, "Of Union i r r e s i s t a b l e " (VI, 63), advancing "In s i l e n c e ... to the sound/ Of i n s t r u -mental Harmony that breath'd/ Heroic Ardor" (11. 64-66), i s the p o r t r a i t of e t e r n a l grandeur: v i c t o r y i s a counterpart of the genuine heroism s e r v i n g " i n the Cause/ Of God and h i s Messiah" (11. 67-66). Against t h i s , the " b a t t a i l o u s aspect" (1. 81) of "The banded Powers of Satan hasting on/ With f u r i o u s e x p e d i t i o n " (11. 85-86) i l l u s t r a t e s sheer f o l l y : the " b o a s t f u l Argument" (1. 84) of p h y s i c a l v i o l e n c e a s p i r i n g against unchanging s p i r i t u a l s t r e n g t h i s misspent. L i k e w i s e , Satan's hope to i m i t a t e heavenly thunder i n v i t e s a parodic comparison of h i s e n t e r p r i s e t o omnipotence. The bombastic r h e t o r i c and e x c e s s i v e l y i n f l a t e d d i c t i o n d e s c r i b i n g cannon warfare r e f l e c t s the a b s u r d i t y of Satan's stance: ... Which i n t o hollow Engines long and round Thick rammed, at th'other bore w i t h touch of f i r e D i l a t e d and i n f u r i a t e s h a l l send f o r t h From f a r w i t h thund'ring noise among our foes Such implements of m i s c h i e f as s h a l l dash To p i e c e s , and o'erwhelm whatever stands Adverse, that they s h a l l f e a r we have disarm'd The Thunderer of h i s only dreaded b o l t . (VI, 484-491) With a general's sense, Satan attempts to r a i s e courage i n h i s f o l l o w e r s : "Meanwhile r e v i v e ; / Abandon f e a r ; t o s t r e n g t h and counsel j o i n ' d / Think nothing hard, much l e s s to be d e s p a i r ' d " (VI, 493-495). But the comedy of a s e l f - r a i s e d general s o l e l y occupied w i t h " T r a i n i n g h i s d e v i l i s h Enginry, impal'd/ On every s i d e w i t h shadowing Squadrons Deep,/ To hide the f r a u d " (11. 553-555) confirms h i s f o l l y . Satan's adoption of the conventional " s t r i f e of G l o r y " ( V I , 290) does not reap the expected v i c t o r y . When he 14 confronts "the g r i s l y t e r r o r " ( I I , 704) of Death at H e l l ' s gates, wearing the menacing appearance worthy of an Aeneas— Incens't with indignation Satan stood U n t e r r i f i e d , and l i k e a Comet burn'd, That f i r e s the length of Ophiucus huge . In t h ' A r t i c Sky, and from hi s h o r r i d hair Shakes P e s t i l e n c e and War. ( I I , 707-711) — t h e contest turns into a drama of self-awareness. The comic i n t r u s i o n of Sin prevents Satan from exercising m a r t i a l v a l o u r — " a n d now great deeds/ Had been achiev'd" (11. 722-723)—and the would-be hero i s forced to recognize the "miscreated" (1. 683) foe as a mirror of himself, the ugliness of Sin as his "perfect image" (1. 764). This d e f l a t i o n of the c l a s s i c a l contest also takes place in the encounter between Michael"and Satan. Milton depicts 'the two as s u p e r l a t i v e examples of conventional heroism: ... for l i k e s t Gods they seem'd, Stood they or mov'd, in stature, motion, arms F i t to decide the Empire of great Heav'n. (VI, 301-303) The sight of these two gods l i k e "Two Planets rushing from aspect malign/ Of f i e r c e s t opposition i n mid Sky" (11. 313-314) e l i c i t s "expectation ... In horror" (11. 306-307). But the expectation of the i n d i v i d u a l deciding f a t e on the merit of h i s p h y s i c a l strength i s not met. When Milton associates Michael's v i c t o r y with d i v i n e power—"the sword/ Of Michael from the Armory of God/ Was giv'n him temper'd so, that neither keen/ Nor s o l i d might r e s i s t that edge" (VI, 320-323)—he surpasses even the convention where the v i c t o r ' s success i s due to Olympia's int e r v e n t i o n . Here the p o t e n t i a l g l o r i e s of the p h y s i c a l combat become wholly i r r e l e v a n t : Satan cannot conquer the moral order where b a t t l e i s e s s e n t i a l l y s p i r i t u a l . And the impotence of Satanic 15 heroism i s further underlined i n j u x t a p o s i t i o n to Abdiel. The force of Abdiel's singular f a i t h f u l n e s s exposes Satan's fraudulent heroism. Abdiel i s the s o l i t a r y hero, "Among innumerable f a l s e , unmov'd/ Unshak'n, unseduc'd, u n t e r r i f i ' d " (V, 898-899), constant i n l o y a l t y , love, and z e a l (V, 900). He possesses a f a i t h p a r a l l e l to what F i s h c a l l s "an e x i s t e n t i a l assurance of God's love," and i s thus the p o s i t i v e counterpart 12 to Satan. The adversary "thought himself impair'd" (V, 665) at the i n t r o -duction of the Son, but Abdiel concludes from experience that the event i s "bent rather to e x a l t " (V, 829) the angelic state. I t i s out of t h i s unalter able assurance of d i v i n e beneficence that Abdiel voices the f i n a l doom awaiting Satan's self-imposed a l i e n a t i o n : "Then who created thee lamenting l e a r n , / When who can uncreate thee thou shalt know" (V, 894-895). Abdiel f u l f i l l s the Son's command to "stand only" (VI, 810), and receives the praise awarded the righteous servant f o r having "fought/ The better f i g h t ... Of Truth, i n word mightier than they i n Arms" (VI, 29-30, 32). This d i s t i n c t i o n between, the s u p e r i o r i t y of tr u t h against sheer v i o l e n c e i s c e n t r a l to Mi l t o n ' negation of c l a s s i c a l heroism. The Father r e f e r s to the subsequent war in heaven as by f a r "the easier conquest" (VI, 37) i n comparison to the test of s o l i t a r y f a i t h f u l n e s s . Abdiel understands that the s p i r i t u a l v i c t o r necess-a r i l y succeeds i n a ph y s i c a l contest: ... nor i s i t aught but just., That he who i n debate of Truth hath won, Should win i n Arms, i n both disputes a l i k e V i c t o r ; though b r u t i s h that contest and f o u l , When Reason hath to deal with force, yet so Most reason i s that Reason overcome. (VI, 121-126) And the f i g u r e of Satan r a i s e d on h i s "Royal seat ... A f f e c t i n g a l l equality with God,/ In i m i t a t i o n of that Mount whereon/ Messiah was declar'd i n sight 16 of Heav'n" (V, 756, 763-765), i n f u s i n g unwary a s s o c i a t e s "with calumnious A r t / Of c o u n t e r f e i t e d t r u t h " (V, 770-771), i s thus an i d o l of genuine heroism* He e x h i b i t s the M i l t o n i c p r i n c i p l e that "strength from Truth d i v i d e d " (VI , 38.1) must f a i l . As Mi c h a e l l a t e r r e l a t e s to Adam, might f o r i t s own sake i s confused w i t h "Valour and Heroic V i r t u e , " but i s only d e s t r u c t i o n , never v a l i d heroism ( X I , 689-697). The appearance of the great Ensign of the Messiah (VI, 775) on the t h i r d day of the war i n heaven i s emblematic of the f i n a l defeat Satan must meet i n a moral u n i v e r s e . Autonomous m a r t i a l v a l o u r d i s i n t e g r a t e s i n the encounter w i t h manifested Truth: • " • . ... they a s t o n i s h t a l l r e s i s t a n c e l o s t , A l l courage; down t h i r i d l e weapons dropp'd .... His arrows .... ... with e r ' d a l l t h i r s t r e n g t h , And of t h i r wonted v i g o r l e f t them d r a i n ' d , Exhausted, s p i r i t l e s s , a f f l i c t e d , f a l l ' n . ( V I , 838-839, 845, 850-852) Furthermore,it i s s i g n i f i c a n t that the Son "meant/ Not to dest r o y , but root them out of Heav'n" (VI, 854-855) and that the f a l l e n angels "headlong them-selv e s threw/ Down from the verge of Heav'n" ( V I , 864-865). Satan's act of r e b e l l i o n i s one of s e l f - n e g a t i o n : the Son r e s t o r e s order to heaven, but Satan himself embraces d e s t i n y . C e n t r a l to M i l t o n ' s r e f u t a t i o n of the c l a s s i c a l h e r o i c i d e a l i n Paradise  Lost i s Satan's consciousness of the t o r t u r e that e v i l i s . As Satan approaches the climax of h i s e n t e r p r i s e i n Eden, he experiences the i n t r i n s i c chaos of . h i s i n f e r n a l c o n d i t i o n — a psyche d i v i d e d between unabated rage and d e b i l i t a t -ing d e s p a i r . Satan, now f i r s t inflam'd w i t h rage, came down, The Tempter ere th'Accuser of man-kind, i To wreck on innocent f r a i l man h i s l o s s Of that j u s t B a t t l e , and h i s f l i g h t to H e l l : Yet not r e j o i c i n g i n his speed, though bold, Far o f f and f e a r l e s s , nor with cause to boast, Begins his d i r e attempt, which nigh the b i r t h Now r o l l i n g , b o i l s i n h i s tumultuous breast, And l i k e a d e v i l i s h Engine back r e c o i l s Upon himself; horror and doubt d i s t r a c t His troubl'd thoughts, and from the bottom s t i r The H e l l within him, for within him H e l l He brings, and round about him, nor from H e l l One step no more than from himself can f l y By change of place: Now conscience wakes despair That slumber'd, wakes the b i t t e r memory Of what he was, what i s , and what must be Worse: of worse deeds worse suf f e r i n g s must ensue. (IV, 9-26) Here the narrator's v o i c e l i n k s the rage characterizing c l a s s i c a l heroes to the i n t r i n s i c v a n i t y of Satan's odyssey. Satan i s the v i c t i m of imprison-ing e g o c e n t r i c i t y where he experiences the emptiness of his e a r l i e r boasts on the glory of autonomy from God. The i n i t i a l heroic boast that "The mind i s i t s own place, and in i t s e l f / Can make a Heav'n of H e l l , a H e l l of Heav'n" ( I , 254-255) now takes on a t r a g i c s i g n i f i c a n c e : the autonomous mind i s no longer able to d i s t i n g u i s h between heaven and h e l l because i t i s . i t s e l f h e l l . Satan i s the v i c t i m of a self-induced moral schizophrenia, the h e l l of conscious r e b e l l i o n from which there i s no escape. The f a c t that h i s choice to "wreck on innocent f r a i l man his l o s s " (IV, 11) " l i k e a d e v i l i s h Engine back r e c o i l s / Upon himself" (11. 17-18) i l l u s t r a t e s the M i l t o n i c v i s i o n of s i n as the continuous act of s u i c i d e . As Jon S. Lawry comments, For Satan, " r e c o i l " i d e n t i f i e s a warlike and war-engineering 18 pride that must return d e s t r u c t i v e l y upon i t s inventor's head, thereby i d e n t i f y i n g s i n as a form of s u i c i d e and H e l l i t s e l f as a perverse and h e l p l e s s l y vacant r e f l e c t i o n of Heaven .... We scarcely n o t i c e that the immediate image or metaphor for F a l l is. that of war and "Bat t l e proud" (1,43), but i t i s well to f i t that sense: any erroneous choice i s d i r e c t warfare against both c r e a t i v i t y and e t e r n i t y , as w e l l 13 as a s u i c i d a l antagonistic " r e c o i l " against the chooser. S i m i l a r l y , M.M. Mahood describes h e l l as the concave mirror for heaven where 14 good things are not excluded but perverted. And C.S. Lewis captures the tragedy of Satan's inner a n t i t h e t i c a l dilemma: "he has become more a L i e than a L i a r , a pe r s o n i f i e d s e l f - c o n t r a d i c t i o n . " ^ In the pr i v a t e p o r t r a i t of Satan, the poet i l l u s t r a t e s that i n f e r n a l heroism n e c e s s a r i l y " r e c o i l s " (1. 17) upon i t s e l f because i t i s the erroneous choice of warfare against both God and the created s e l f , the very inversion of p o s i t i v e r e a l i t y . In the privacy of the s o l i l o q u y , Satan expresses e x i s t e n t i a l conscious-ness of the horror of self-imprisonment. He experiences the consequent punishment of egocentric r e b e l l i o n of which God says .. him who disobeys Mee disobeys, breaks union, and that day Cast out from God and blessed v i s i o n , f a l l s Into u t t e r darkness, deep i n g u l f t , h i s place Ordain'd without redemption, without end. (V, 611-615) And the g l o r i e s of the created world enforce upon Satan the meaning of s e l f -i n f l i c t e d separation from God; h i s f a l l e n l o t i s that "utter darkness, deep i n g u l f t " of the psyche that coincides with r e b e l l i o n and the e t e r n a l l o s s of the b e a t i f i c v i s i o n . In h i s address to the sun on Mount Niphates, Satan voices the tortured conscience wakened by the beauties of the created world: 19 ... to thee I c a l l , But with no f r i e n d l y voice, and add thy name 0 Sun, to t e l l thee how I hate thy beams That bring to my remembrance from what state 1 f e l l , how gl o r i o u s once above thy Sphere; T i l l Pride and worse Ambition threw me down Warring i n Heav'n against Heav'n's matchless King: Ah wherefore! he deserv'd no such return . From me, whom he created what I was .... ' (IV, 35-43) Here, i n f l a t c o n t r a d i c t i o n to e a r l i e r proud r h e t o r i c , the warrior e x c e l l i n g a l l c l a s s i c a l precedent admits he i s g u i l t y of a pseudo-heroism directed against a benevolent God. Awareness of a genuine heroism superior to h i s own "high d i s d a i n , from sense of in j u r ' d merit" ( I , 98) condemns him: "but other Powers as great/ F e l l not, but stand unshak'n, from within/ Or from without, to a l l temptations arm'd" (IV, 63-65). Logic demands that Satan pursue t h i s self-imposed t r i a l : "Hadst thou the same free W i l l and Power to stand?/ Thou hadst: whom hast thou then or what to accuse,/ But Heav'n's free Love dealt equally to a l l ? " (IV, 66-68) But the i n f e r n a l hero i s unable to f u l f i l l the demands of moral l o g i c and, u n l i k e man, undergoes the e x i s t e n t i a l c r i s i s of personal g u i l t without responding to awareness with repentance. Satanic consciousness i s that l i m i t e d scope of awareness which brings "No l i g h t , but rather darkness v i s i b l e " ( I , 63). Satan expresses the agony of a divided consciousness and, i n his perverse reasoning, sentences himself to ego-c e n t r i c i t y : Be then h i s Love accurst, since love or hate To me a l i k e , i t deals ete r n a l woe. Nay curs'd be thou; since against h i s thy w i l l Chose f r e e l y what i t now so j u s t l y rues. 20 Me miserable! which way s h a l l I f l y I n f i n i t e wrath, and i n f i n i t e despair? Which way I f l y i s H e l l ; myself am H e l l .... (IV, 69-75) S i m i l a r l y , upon entering the serpent, Satan voices t r a g i c self-awareness of the extent of his d e p r a v i t y — t r a g i c because he again i s o l a t e s his moral g u i l t without transforming the consequent horror to repentance.. 0 f o u l descent! that I who erst contended With Gods to s i t the highest, am now constrained Into a Beast, and mixt with b e s t i a l slime, This essence to incarnate and imbrute, That to the highth of Deity aspir'd; But what w i l l not Ambition and Revenge Descend to? who aspires must down as low As high he soar'd, obnoxious f i r s t o r . l a s t To basest things. Revenge, at f i r s t though sweet, B i t t e r ere long back on i t s e l f r e c o i l s ; Let i t .... (IX, 163-173) He asks the incriminating question "But what w i l l not Ambition and Revenge/ Descend to?" and answers with the f a t a l i s m that the law of depravity precludes a r e v e r s a l . He understands the v i t a l p r i n c i p l e that "Revenge ... back on i t s e l f r e c o i l s , " but dismisses the sweeping implications of h i s moral argument' i n two f a t a l s y l l a b l e s — " L e t i t . " . The tragedy of Satan's a n t i t h e t i c a l state i s that the r e v e l a t i o n of d i v i n e goodness serves only to renew h i s own h e l l i s h n e s s . When on the thresh-hold of Paradise, he courageously declares " a l l good to me becomes/ Bane" (IX, 122-123) i n the best c l a s s i c a l fashion, there i s no v o i c e to contradict him. He perceives the earth as a " T e r r e s t i a l Heav'n" (IX, 103), a world 21 s i g n i f y i n g uninterrupted d e l i g h t whose v i r t u e s are " a l l summ'd up in Man" (IX, 113), but h i s mind i s t r u l y that "hateful siege/ Of c o n t r a r i e s " (IX, 121-122) where good i s perceived but cannot be tasted. Satan i s the v i c t i m of h i s own d e s i r e to s u b s t i t u t e e v i l f o r .good ( i y , . 110): pleasure i s experienced as torment, Eden as h e l l , good as e v i l . I t i s i n t h i s dramatic c o n f l i c t between i n f e r n a l malice and a l i n g e r i n g s e n s i t i v i t y to good that the subsequent sight of Eve so t r a n s f i x e s the Archfiend: innocence divorces Satan from malice and he momentarily, s i g n i f i c a n t l y , becomes "Stupidly good" (IX, 465). ... her Heav'nly form Angelic, but more s o f t , and Feminine, Her g r a c e f u l Innocence, her every Air. Of gesture or least a c t i o n overaw'd His Malice, and with rapine sweet bereav'd His fierceness of the f i e r c e intent i t brought: That space the E v i l one abstracted stood From h i s own e v i l , and for the time remain'd Stupidly good, of enmity disarm'd, Of g u i l e , of hate, of envy, of revenge.... (IX, 457-466) The power of the d i v i n e image i n Eve's person brings about the miracle of momentarily separating Satan from the h e l l that i s h i s f a l l e n s e l f . I t i s t h i s drama of Satan standing "Stupidly good" (1. 465) before Eve, and then f o r c i b l y r e c o l l e c t i n g " F i e r c e hate" (1. 471) , which captures the moral c o n f l i c t i n Paradise Lost. As G. Rostrevor Hamilton observes, Satan under-goes "the c o n f l i c t between love, which d e l i g h t s i n d e r i v i n g from someone else and u l t i m a t e l y from God, and pride or s e l f - l o v e , which clamours f o r personal independence."^ Satan i n Paradise Lost i s the t r a g i c anti-type,both hero and f o o l , whose erroneous b e l i e f that hatred i s stronger than love i m (IX, 489-493) locks him into a pseudo-heroic stance v a i n l y opposed to the benevolent order of the universe. Satan of Paradise Regained i s a d i f f e r e n t antagonist from the f i g u r e i n Paradise Lost, j u s t as the "begotten Son" (PL, I I I , 80) i n whom " a l l h i s Father shone" (1. 139) i s not the equivalent of "th'exalted man" (PR,I,36), but the c o n t i n u i t y of Milton's epic v i s i o n i n v i t e s comparison. In Paradise  Regained, the aura of grandeur surrounding c l a s s i c a l heroism i s d i s p e l l e d i n a d e l i n e a t i o n of s p i r i t u a l ineptitude. In t h i s b r i e f epic, the attractiveness of Satan i n the e a r l y books of Paradise Lost gives way to an i n g l o r i o u s p o r t r a i t of the i n f e r n a l mind: throughout Paradise Regained, Satan subcons-c i o u s l y d i s c l o s e s the i n t r i n s i c s p i r i t u a l weakness only t h i n l y v e i l e d by the sham g l o r i e s of the c l a s s i c a l heroic enterprise. The Romantic r e b e l degener-ating into moral schizophrenia throughout Paradise Lost e x h i b i t s here a r i o t o u s psyche divided by envy, fe a r , rage, and sheer d e s p e r a t i o n — a presump-t u o u s energy exhausting i t s e l f against the profounder mind of C h r i s t . As Northrop Frye says of t h i s epic, "Satan, who seems so l i v e l y and r e s o u r c e f u l , i s the power that moves toward the cessation of a l l a c t i v i t y , a kind of personal entropy that transforms a l l energy into a heat-death."^ In Paradise  Regained, the p o r t r a i t of Satan attempting to discover the nature of C h r i s t ' s sonship by tempting him with secular versions of the messianic r o l e conveys the M i l t o n i c v i s i o n that the old era of sheer violence must collapse before the advent of Truth incarnate. Satan's a s p i r a t i o n s towards gl o r i o u s heroism i n Paradise Regained are undercut from the outset. In contrast to the courageous general prudently concealing fear and doubt from the public eye i n Paradise Lost, Satan i n Paradise Regained f r e e l y d i s c l o s e s well-grounded fears to the i n f e r n a l c o u n c i l . A f t e r witnessing C h r i s t ' s baptism "With wonder, then with envy fraught and rage" (1,38), the would-be hero escapes to report h i s overwhelming sense of doom. 23 Long the decrees of Heav'n Delay, f o r longest time to him i s short; And now too soon for us the c i r c l i n g hours This dreaded time have compast, wherein we Must bide the stroke of that long threat'n'd wound, At l e a s t so i f we can, and by the head Broken be not intended a l l our power To be i n f r i n g ' d ... His b i r t h to our j u s t fear gave no small cause, But h i s growth now to youth's f u l l flow'r, d i s p l a y i n g A l l v i r t u e , grace and wisdom to achieve Things highest, greatest, m u l t i p l i e s my fear. ( I , 5 5 - 6 2 , 66-69) Then Satan seizes the opportunity to explo i t t h e i r awakened sense of danger f o r the f a m i l i a r purpose of s e l f - e x a l t a t i o n . Ye see our danger on the utmost edge Of hazard, which admits no long debate, But must with something sudden be oppos'd, Not f o r c e , but well couch't fraud, well woven snares .... I, when no other durst, sole undertook The dismal expedition to f i n d out And r u i n Adam, and the explo i t perform'd Successfully; a calmer voyage now W i l l waft me; and the way found prosperous once Induces best to hope of l i k e success. ( I , 9 4 - 9 7 , 100-105) But i n contrast to the monarch o f f e r i n g "Deliverance" (PL, I I , 465) from h e l l , Satan's attempt to,conjure a majestic image i s unconvincing. His pub l i c a t i o n of fear undermines h i s c r e d i b i l i t y as a hero i n the c l a s s i c a l 24 mode. And h i s easy admission of the fraudulent nature of h i s e n t e r p r i s e — "Not f o r c e , but w e l l couch't fraud, well woven snares" (PR, I, 9 7 ) — i s i n d i c a t i v e of a defeated herd having given up on the o r i g i n a l intent to prove equa l i t y , i f not s u p e r i o r i t y , to God. Satan r e c a l l s h i s past expedition to Eden i n heroic terms, but h i s own d e s c r i p t i o n of the " r u i n " of Adam and the succes s f u l " e x p l o i t perform'd" (1. 103) acts rather as an indictment. His a l l u s i o n to the "dismal expedition" (1. 101) i s intended to b o l s t e r h i s image but, i r o n i c a l l y , s i g n i f i e s a t r a g i c event where the ensuing s u f f e r i n g i s most f e l t by the seducer. Satan ends h i s r e s o l u t i o n to beguile Christ with the necessary "hope .of l i k e success" (1. 105), but t h i s adherence to heroic form i s the crowning irony of h i s transparently ludicrous stance. The ineptitude of Satan against his enemy i s evident i n the a n t i t h e t i c a l r h e t o r i c following the f a i l u r e of the f i r s t temptation. While h i s dis g u i s e as "an aged man i n Rural weeds" ( I , 314) i s p e r f e c t l y acceptable i n Odysseus' world, i t i s f o l l y i n the encounter with Truth incarnate, and Satan's sub-sequent speech i l l u s t r a t e s h i s awareness of that f o l l y . A f o i l e d Satan wavers between bemoaning h i s misery, describing himself as "that S p i r i t unfortunate" ( I , 358) who exchanged heaven's b l i s s f o r "the bottomless deep... that hideous place" (11. 361-362), and boasting over h i s "Large l i b e r t y " (1. 365) as usurper. Contradicting h i s e a r l i e r boast to the c o u n c i l over the successful r u i n of man ( I , 100-105), Satan denies the v a l i d i t y of h i s i n d i c t -ment as "foe/ To a l l mankind" ( I , 387-388), p r e f e r r i n g the generous t i t l e "Copartner" (1. 392) . Then Satan i n v a l i d a t e s the j u s t self-drawn p o r t r a i t of l i b e r t y by admitting that while he may have sought man as a companion to misery, he now has learned that shared pain i s "Small consolation" (1. 403) when the companion i s e l i g i b l e f o r a r e s t o r a t i o n he has excluded himself from. Satan's words i l l u s t r a t e the dilemma of self-imprisonment, and Chris t answers h i s speech by echoing Satan's own lament i n Paradise Lost that " a l l good to me becomes/ Bane" (IX, 122-123). Christ judges Satan as "a poor 25 miserable captive t h r a l l ... now depos'd,/ Ejected, emptied, gaz'd, u n p i t i e d , shunn'd, / A spectacle of r u i n or of scorn" (PR, I, 411, 413-415) who i s "never more in H e l l than, when i n Heaven" (1. 420). The drama of Satan's encounter with'the Nazarene l i e s i n the ambiguity as to how f a r he comprehends the i d e n t i t y of " t h ' exalted man" ( I , 36). S i g n i f i c a n t l y , Satan associates the a r r i v a l of Christ with the execution of "that f a t a l wound" ( I , 53), the curse pronounced upon him following the f a l l of man. Unlike h i s i n i t i a l reduction of the Son's curse to endurable pain (PL, X, 494-496, 498-501), Satan now undermines hi s own r e b e l l i o u s determin-a t i o n by v o i c i n g the l i k e l i h o o d of imminent defeat. But at the same time "the Adversary" (1. 3.3) appears unaware of the f u l l import of C h r i s t ' s baptism, d i s t i n g u i s h i n g between the Son he encountered i n the war i n heaven and t h i s unknown enemy. His f i r s t begot we know, and sore have f e l t , When h i s f i e r c e thunder drove us to the deep; Who t h i s i s we must learn, for man he seems In a l l h i s lineaments, though i n h i s face The glimpses of h i s Father's glory shine. (PR, I, 89-93) Later, r e l y i n g on the f a m i l i a r delusion that a s p i r i t of heaven cannot lose, his s t a t i o n (PL, I I , 687), Satan counters C h r i s t ' s t i t l e as the Son of God with the a s s e r t i o n that the t i t l e i s not r e s t r i c t e d to the singular sense, and t.hat he i s himself a Son of God. The i l l o g i c a l nature of Satan's a s s e r t i o n i s evident i n h i s i r r e s o l u t e d i c t i o n : ... thou a r t c a l l ' d The Son of God, which bears no s i n g l e sense; The Son of God I also am, or was, And i f I was, I am; r e l a t i o n stands; A l l men are Sons of. God; yet,thee I thought, 26 In some respect f a r higher so declar'd. , (IV, 516-521) In h i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c manner, Satan declares equality with C h r i s t , checks the presumption by adding the past tense, and then weakly returns to the a s s e r t i o n — " A n d i f I was, I am" (1. 519). And i n a democratic s p i r i t , Satan b r i e f l y includes man under the t i t l e , then immediately contradicts himself by reassuming the suspicion that Christ occupies a more august s t a t i o n . Of course, Satan never was the Son of God, not even as the superior Arch-angel, and h i s confused r h e t o r i c betrays the pretense. D.C. A l l e n argues that the ignorance Satan p e r s i s t s i n i s not doubt over the i d e n t i t y of h i s opposite, 18 but over h i s own f a i l i n g powers as a corrupter. He i n s i s t s that Satan i s not so much uncertain as he i s a f r a i d , and that he uses i n s i n c e r e uncertainty as an implement of seduction intended to e s t a b l i s h s e l f - d i s t r u s t i n h i s 19 opponent. C h r i s t ' s b e l i e f that Satan hides h i s recognition of him as the Messiah—"Why dost thou then suggest to me d i s t r u s t , / Knowing who I am, as I know who thou a r t ? " ( I , 355-356)—supports A l l e n ' s view that Satan i s feigning ignorance i n order to r a i s e C h r i s t ' s " d i s t r u s t " i n h i s own i d e n t i t y . However, i t i s not ever clear that Satan consciously recognizes Christ as the sole begotten Son of God incarnate. Certainly.Satan i s aware of C h r i s t ' s godlike v i r t u e s , but intense fear confused with ambitious c l a s s i c a l a s p i r a t i o n s precludes discernment. The c o n f l i c t between.what i s perhaps Satan's subcon-scious awareness of C h r i s t ' s i d e n t i t y and h i s apparent ignorance of the f u l l i m plications of t h i s discernment sustains the drama of h i s f o o l i s h enterprise i n Paradise Regained. Satan's temptations of Christ with the lures of s e l f i s h c l a s s i c a l heroism i l l u s t r a t e h i s i n a b i l i t y to fathom the depths of C h r i s t ' s mind. Satan i s "the importune Tempter" ( I I , 404), both pe r s i s t e n t and u n f i t , who v a c i l l a t e s between h i s conviction of defeat and desperate attempts to a l t e r the course of imminent doom. Afte r the f a i l u r e of the f i r s t temptation 27 urging Christ to perform the miracle of turning stones into bread, Satan .acknowledges C h r i s t ' s exalted mind and fears he may be "overmatch'd" ( I I , 146): If he be Man by Mother's side at l e a s t With more than human g i f t s from Heav'n adorn'd, Perfections absolute, Graces d i v i n e , And amplitude of mind to greatest Deeds. ( I I , 13 6-139) He thus rebukes B e l i a l ' s suggestion to lure Christ with p h y s i c a l l u s t , i n s i s t i n g that "one look from h i s Majestic brow,/ Seated as on the top of V i r t u e ' s h i l l " ( I I , 216-217) would n u l l i f y the seductive powers of female beauty. But while Satan thus reasons that Adam's weakness i s hot C h r i s t ' s , he repeats the context of Eve's f a l l by tempting a famished Chri s t with a sumptuous fe a s t , only to admit l a t e r that h i s "temperance i n v i n c i b l e ... no allurement y i e l d s to a p p e t i t e " ( I I , 408-409). F a i l i n g to move C h r i s t , the cumulative e f f e c t of Satan's temptations i l l u s t r a t e s the f o l l y of tempting s p i r i t u a l strength with the sham g l o r i e s of s e l f i s h and ambitious materialism. Much of Satan's energy i s devoted to r e d i r e c t i n g C h r i s t ' s future with the appeal to the necessity of public fame. R i d i c u l i n g the^lowliness of C h r i s t ' s s t a t i o n as carpenter, the tempter i n s i s t s that "Great acts require great means of en t e r p r i s e ; / Thou art unknown, unfriended, low of b i r t h . . . . Money brings Honor, Friends, Conquest, and Realms" ( I I , 412-413, 422). He shuns. C h r i s t ' s obscure, " p r i v a t e " ( I I I , 232) l i f e , i n s i s t i n g that the lack of p u b l i c experience leaves the wisest man "Timorous and l o t h , with novice modesty ... I r r e s o l u t e , unhardy, unadvent'rous" ( I I I , 241, 243), and, c i t i n g h i s t o r i c a l examples, attempts to inflame the Messiah with the t h i r s t f o r secular g l o r y ( I I I , 31-43). Satan's appeal that Ch r i s t f u l f i l l messianic prophecy by becoming a p o l i t i c a l r u l e r i s a timely temptation, one f u l l y i n accordance with the expectations of contemporary devout Jewry: 28 If Kingdom move thee not, l e t move thee z e a l And Duty .... Zeal of thy Father's house, Duty to free Thy Country from her Heathen servitude; So shalt thou best . f u l l f 11,. best v e r i f y The Prophets o l d , who sung thy endless r e i g n , The happier reign the sooner i t begins. ( I l l , 171-172, 175-179) Satan then embellishes t h i s appeal by o f f e r i n g m i l i t a r y s u p e r i o r i t y i n the best c l a s s i c a l v e i n : "Thou on the Throne of David i n f u l l g l o r y , / From Egypt to Euphrates and beyond/ Shalt reign, and Rome or Caesar not need f e a r " ( I I I , 383-385). F a i l i n g to comprehend Chr i s t ' s complete r e j e c t i o n of c l a s s i c a l epic values, Satan i n s i s t s that s p i r i t u a l i t y i s weakness 1—"Virtue, Valor, Wisdom s i t in want" ( I I , 431)—-and enforces the temptation with the a s s e r t i o n that greatness can only be r e a l i z e d i n a p o l i t i c a l conquest of the e n t i r e world: . "The Kingdoms of the world to thee I give ... On t h i s condition i f thou w i l t f a l l down,/ And worship me as thy superior Lord" (IV, 163, 166-7). Satan's bold words i l l u s t r a t e a myopic e g o c e n t r i c i t y which i s indeed "overmatch'd" by the theocentric hero. C h r i s t ' s r e b u t t a l of Satanic r h e t o r i c aggravates the c o n f l i c t between Satan's subconscious awareness of C h r i s t ' s i d e n t i t y and h i s ignorance of the i m p l i c a t i o n s . Christ counters Satan's argument that "Virtue, Valor, Wisdom s i t i n want" ( I I , 431) with the ins i g h t that "Wealth without these three i s impotent/ To gain dominion or to keep i t gain'd" ( I I , 433-434), and de f l a t e s m a t e r i a l i s t i c presumption with the view that r i c h e s are "the t o i l of Fools" (II,.453),golden i n appearance only ( I I , 459-462). Satan's o f f e r of fame through the wisdom of Greece i s rejected as another empty pu r s u i t : C h r i s t reduces secular knowledge to Plato's discernment of f i n a l ignorance (IV, 293-294) and, moreover, r e j e c t s the i n t r i n s i c e g o c e n t r i c i t y of pagan philosophers 29 (IV, 314-315). The Nazarene exposes Satan's i d o l a t r y of c l a s s i c a l glory by juxtaposing the genuine glory c e n t r a l to God's character, echoed i n h i s servants, and Satan i s si l e n c e d , "struck/ With g u i l t of h i s own s i n " ( I I I , 146-147). Satan's encounter with t r u t h convicts him of f o l l y , and the reader repeatedly sees him standing "A while as mute confounded what to say,/ What to reply, confuted and convinc't/ Of h i s weak arguing and f a l -l a cious d r i f t " ( I I I , 2-4), a self-defeated f i g u r e f o r c i b l y " c o l l e c t i n g a l l h i s Serpent w i l e s " ( I I I , 5) to renew the v a i n a s s a u l t . While Satan senses and fears C h r i s t ' s godlike nature, h i s self-imprisonment precludes f u l l compre-hension. Satan, d i r e c t i n g energy to convince Christ to assume secular leader ship, i s wholly unaware of the irony that C h r i s t ' s f u l f i l l m e n t of the command to r e i g n must be h i s doom. Christ asks, Why a r t thou S o l i c i t o u s ? What moves thy i n q u i s i t i o n ? Know'st thou not that my r i s i n g i s thy f a l l , And my promotion w i l l be thy destruction? ( I l l , 199-202) And Satan's answer echoes the desperate heroism of Paradise Lost (IV, 108-110) : "Let that come when i t comes; a l l hope i s l o s t / Of my reception into grace; what worse?/ For where no hope i s l e f t , i s l e f t no f e a r " ( I I I , 204-206). But here h i s attempt to r a i s e v i c t o r i o u s courage only under-l i n e s the awareness of h i s own fraudulence. The bold renunciation of fear collapses f i r s t i n t o self-condemnation (11. 212-215), then into the hope that C h r i s t ' s meekness would be a r e l i e f from God's wrath (11. 215-222). • Satan's r h e t o r i c i s d e f l a t e d against the unchanging s p i r i t u a l i t y of the Nazarene and, exasperated, Satan r e j e c t s C h r i s t ' s f i t n e s s for t h i s world: Since neither wealth, nor honour, arms nor a r t s , Kingdom nor Empire pleases thee, nor aught By me propos'd i n l i f e contemplative, 30 Or a c t i v e , tended on by glory, or fame, What dost thou i n t h i s World? The Wilderness For thee i s f i t t e s t place .... (IV, 368-373) Satan i s the prisoner of h i s tortured conscience, the parodic deceiver who S t i l l w i l l be tempting him who f o i l s him s t i l l , And never cease, though to h i s shame the more; Or as a swarm of f l i e s i n vintage time, About the wine-press where sweet must i s pour'd, Beat o f f , returns as o f t with humming sound; Or surging waves against a s o l i d rock, Though a l l to shivers dash't, t h ' assault renew, Vain b a t t ' r y , and i n f r o t h or bubbles end; So Satan, whom repulse upon repulse Met ever, and to shameful s i l e n c e brought, Yet gives not o'er though desperate of success, And h i s v a i n importunity pursues. (IV,, 13-24). His caustic d e n i a l of C h r i s t ' s kingdom i s the embittered voice of one denying the existence of worlds beyond h i s range of v i s i o n while f e e l i n g threatened by the same suggestion of t h e i r existence. A Kingdom they portend thee, but what Kingdom, Real or A l l e g o r i c I discern not Nor when, eternal sure, as without end, Without beginning; for no date p r e f i x t D i r e c t s me i n the.Starry Rubric set. (IV, 389-393) Satan's inner c o n f l i c t culminates i n h i s attempt to overcome the " f a t a l -enemy" (IV; 525) by placing him on the highest pinnacle of the temple i n 31 Jerusalem. , Here Christ f u l f i l l s h i s e a r l i e r prophecy that he i s the " l i v i n g Oracle" ( I , 460) who w i l l s i l e n c e Satan's f a l s e oracular powers. Satan gives Christ the i r o n i c command to stand, unaware that the standing Messiah presages h i s own defeat. But Satan smitten with amazement f e l l As when Earth's Son Antaeus (to compare Small things with greatest) i n Irassa strove With Jove's Aleides ... F e l l whence he stood to see h i s V i c t o r f a l l . And as that Theban Monster that propos'd Her r i d d l e , and him who solv'd i t not, devour'd,"" That once found out and solv'd, for g r i e f and s p i t e Cast h e r s e l f headlong from t h ' Ismenian steep, So struck with dread and anguish f e l l the Fiend .... (IV, 562-565, 571-576) Deceptive c l a s s i c a l heroism collapses with the advent of superior s p i r i t u -a l i t y : Satan's fraudulent r h e t o r i c , "dark/ Ambiguous and with double sense deluding" ( I , 434-435), ceases i n the face of Truth incarnate. As Oedipus overcame the r i d d l e of the Sphinx with the answer, "Man," so Chris t s i l e n c e s Satanic falsehood with the heroism of theocentric humanism. Satan i n Paradise Regained, the advocate of egocentric c l a s s i c a l heroism, i s "The Tempter f o i l ' d / In a l l h i s w i l e s , defeated and r e p u l s ' t " ( I , 5-6). Thus, the e g o c e n t r i c i t y underlying Satanic energy i n both Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained j a r s against the heroic song i n Milton's universe. Satan's c l a s s i c a l heroic stance i s an aberration from the drama where true a c t i o n i s moral a c t i o n : e v i l i s a parody.of genuine acti o n , "the surrendering 20 of the power to a c t " and the defectiveness of i n e r t i a i t s e l f . As Milton as s e r t s i n De Doctrina C h r i s t i a n a , e v i l i s the p r i v a t i o n of p o s i t i v e c r e a t i v i t y : 32 It i s c a l l e d a c t u a l s i n , not that s i n i s properly an a c t i o n , f o r i n r e a l i t y i t implies defect; but because i t commonly con s i s t s i n some act. For every act i s i n i t s e l f good; i t i s only i t s i r r e g u l a r i t y , or dev i a t i o n from the l i n e of r i g h t , 21 which properly speaking i s e v i l . In the heroic i d o l of these two works, the poet illuminates both the super-f i c i a l a t t r a c t i o n s of e v i l and i t s e s s e n t i a l destructiveness, thus i d e n t i f y -ing the a n t i - h e r o i c s t r a i n opposing h i s epic song. But t h i s i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of Satan i s not easy; rather, Milton poses i n t h i s character the hard task of discernment i n a f a l l e n world. As Lawry argues, It i s a clever mistake to be l i e v e that Milton was of the d e v i l ' s party without knowing i t ; on the contrary, he wants us to know, f u l l y , that i t i s we who have been of the d e v i l ' s party without knowing i t . The r e l a t i o n s h i p of Milton to us resembles that of Michael to Adam. We must experience choice, including the choice of error, and recognize the portion of H e l l that i s where we a r e — f o r Milton's H e l l i s often s i m i l a r to the C i t y of Men at i t s best .... We must share Satan's p r i d e f u l s i n and f a l l before we, as f a l l i b l e human creatures, can properly comprehend the 22 approaching "great Argument" of d i v i n i t y . The poet thrusts the reader into a world where "the knowledge of good i s so involved and interwoven with the knowledge of e v i l , and i n so many cunning resemblances hardly to be discerned, that those confused seeds which were imposed on Psyche as an incessant labor to c u l l out and sort asunder, were 23 not more intermixed." The reader i s a c t i v e l y engaged i n the d i f f i c u l t and continuous process of moral choice, a l t e r n a t e l y attracted and repulsed by Satanic glory, and only a f t e r knowing e v i l i s he ready to envision good. Of course, t h i s d e l i n e a t i o n of the problem of moral choice i n Satan runs the r i s k that the reader w i l l remain i n the narrow confines of the "hero or 33 f o o l " dilemma; even the great advocate of i n t e l l e c t u a l l i b e r t y considers that "perhaps t h i s i s that doom which Adam f e l l i nto of knowing good and 24 e v i l , that i s to say, of knowing good by e v i l . " But, for Milton, the problem of moral choice i s i n e v i t a b l e : i t i s only consciousness of Satan's de f i c i e n c y that prepares the reader for comprehension of the true image of heroism. 34 CHAPTER I I : The Heroic Image: "His weakness s h a l l 6'ercome Satanic strength." The opening l i n e s of Paradise Lost promise the advent of "one greater Man" (1. 4) who w i l l "Restore ... and regain the b l i s s f u l Seat" (1.5) l o s t by Adam. This i s the Messiah " i n Adam's room/ The Head of a l l mankind, though Adam's Son" ( I I I , 285-286), the one whom the poet eulogizes both as "the mighty Pan" (1.89) i n "On the Morning of C h r i s t ' s N a t i v i t y , " and as the "Most perfect Hero" (1.93) i n "The Passion." In the Son in Paradise  Lost, and in the incarnate Son, C h r i s t , i n Paradise Regained, Milton embodies the a n t i t h e s i s of the c l a s s i c a l heroic s p i r i t . While the c l a s s i c a l s p i r i t h a i l s human achievement f o r i t s own sake, Milton celebrates i n the Messiah the paradox that what i s most often considered weak exemplifies greater s p i r i t u a l strength—"By Humiliation and strong Sufferance:/ His weakness s h a l l o'ercome Satanic strength" (PR, I, 160-161). The Son i s the very emblem of the poet's new and "better f o r t i t u d e / Of Patience and Heroic Martyrdom/ [hitherto] Unsung" (PL, IX, 31-33). Satan poses f o r the reader the d i f f i c u l t problem of moral choice, but the Son presents the true image of heroism, an answer so revolutionary that i t i s described as "Above Heroic" (PR, I, 15). . Now the obvious problem with the poet's d e l i n e a t i o n of the Messiah as the representation of heroism l i e s with how praiseworthy heroism i s i n a f i g u r e who i s wholly d i v i n e i n one work, and semi-divine i n the other. The f e e l i n g i s that human heroes prove grandeur by r a i s i n g them- . selves above t h e i r ordinary, f a l l i b l e stature, while gods acting out inherent grandeur prove nothing which we do not already know. But Milton's r e j e c t i o n of the conventional praise of the egocentric human hero i n favour of the di v i n e s u i t s the theocentric heroism he introduces. The Son's g l o r i f i c a t i o n as the perfect hero does not deny man's c e n t r a l r o l e i n Paradise Lost; rather, the Son embodies the s a c r i f i c i a l love offered i n submission to the Father which man learns to echo. In Paradise Regained, C h r i s t ' s r e j e c t i o n of the s u p e r f i c i a l rewards of c l a s s i c a l heroism represents the superior s p i r i t u a l i t y 35 which Adam and Eve embrace i n the "paradise within ... happier f a r " (PL, XII, 587). Christ i s the emblem of theocentric heroism, the image which man may choose to r e f l e c t . Thus, i t would be erroneous to go as f a r as Northrop Frye when he concludes that the Son i s f i n a l l y the sole actor or hero i n Paradise Lost.^ I f Christ were the sole hero i n Paradise Lost, then the object of h i s heroism—to i n s p i r e s i m i l a r magnanimity i n man— would be l o s t . But he i s i n both Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained the perfect image of true heroism, the counterpoint to parodic grandeur i n Satan, and the source of d i v i n e beneficence which man r e f l e c t s . The reader f i r s t encounters the Son i n Paradise Lost when he responds to the Father's a n t i c i p a t i o n of man's f a l l . God argues extensively that man was created a f r e e agent, "ju s t and r i g h t , / S u f f i c i e n t to have stood, though f r e e to f a l l " ( I I I , 98-99), one who l o g i c a l l y deserves the loss he himself "decreed" (1. 116) and "ordain'd" (1. 128). The a m p l i f i c a t i o n of p r e v a i l i n g mercy ending God's speech appropriately introduces the Son: ... Man therefore s h a l l f i n d grace, ... i n Mercy and J u s t i c e both,' Through Heav'n and Earth, so s h a l l my glory excel, But Mercy f i r s t and l a s t s h a l l brightest shine. (11. 131-134) The Son i s the "radiant image" of h i s Father's glory (1. 63), the f i g u r e who makes v i s i b l e (1. 386) the perfect c h a r i t y defining God's nature: Beyond compare the Son of God was seen Most g l o r i o u s , i n him a l l h i s Father shone S u b s t a n t i a l l y express'd, and in h i s face Divine compassion v i s i b l y appear'd, Love without end, and without measure Grace .... (11. 138-142) The chiasmus i n "Love without end, and without measure Grace" expresses the 36 unfathomable s p i r i t u a l l i g h t which generates " i n the blessed S p i r i t s e l e c t / Sense of new joy i n e f f a b l e d i f f u s ' d " (11. 136-137). And the form of the Son's f i r s t speech confirms the ch a r i t y defining h i s character. The Son begins by e x t o l l i n g the Father's gracious sentence towards man (11. 144-149), and then ensures the given promise of mercy with three r e l a t e d r h e t o r i c a l questions. F i r s t , he poses the probable t r a g i c consequence of man's f a l l : For should Man f i n a l l y be l o s t , should Man Thy creature l a t e so lov'd, thy youngest Son F a l l circumvented thus by fraud, though j o i n ' d With h i s own f o l l y ? (11.150-153) In contrast to the Father's t i t l e for man as "ingrate" (1. 97), the Son emphasizes the f r a i l t y of the "youngest Son," the defencelessness of one beloved of the Father who i s outwitted by the adversary. He then answers h i s own question with the emphatic statement that mercy i s the counterpart of di v i n e j u s t i c e : "that be from thee f a r , / That f ar be from thee, Father, who art Judge/ Of a l l things made, and judgest only r i g h t " (11. 153-155). Second, the Son stresses the h o r r i f i c v i c t o r y of Satan over goodness i n the event that God's mercy should f a i l to save man. Or s h a l l the Adversary thus obtain His end, and f r u s t r a t e thine, s h a l l he f u l f i l His malice, and thy goodness bring to naught, Or proud return though to h i s heavier doom. Yet with revenge accomplish't and to H e l l Draw a f t e r him the whole Race of mankind, By him corrupted? (11. 156-162) The l o g i c a l i n c o m p a t i b i l i t y of irredeemable tragedy and omnipotence i s also expressed i n the t h i r d question: "or w i l t thou t h y s e l f / Abolish thy Creation, and unmake/ For him, what for thy glory thou hast made?" (11.162-164) He answers the l a s t questions with the a s s e r t i o n that f a l l e n man unredeemed would deny both God's beneficence and omnipotence: "So should thy goodness and thy. greatness both/ Be questioned and blasphem'd without defense" (11. 165-166). The Son's s t r a t e g i c r h e t o r i c supports the argument for s a l v a t i o n over and against the l o g i c of the f r e e agent choosing h i s own damnation, and he thus establishes himself as the guarantor of d i v i n e mercy. The Son embodies the a c t i v e mercy of God, and h i s o f f e r to f u l f i l l the messianic mission s i g n i f i e s h i s i d e n t i t y as the true image of heroism i n Paradise Lost. In q u a l i f y i n g the agreement that "Man s h a l l not quite be l o s t , but sav'd who w i l l " ( I I I , 173), the Father stresses the need f o r j u s t i c e which makes love i t s e l f meaningful. ... He with h i s whole p o s t e r i t y must d i e , Die hee or J u s t i c e must; unless for him Some other able, and as w i l l i n g , pay The r i g i d s a t i s f a c t i o n , death, f o r death. Say Heav'nly Powers, where s h a l l we f i n d such love, Which of ye w i l l be mortal to redeem Man's mortal crime, and j u s t th'unjust to save, Dwells i n a l l Heaven c h a r i t y so dear? ( I l l , 209-216) This c a l l f o r a w i l l i n g saviour p a r a l l e l s Beelzebub's question i n h e l l , "whom s h a l l we f i n d / S u f f i c i e n t ? " ( I I , 403-404), and we are meant to compare Satan, " r a i s ' d ... with Monarchal pride/ Conscious of highest worth" ( I I 4 2 7 - 4 2 9 ) , to the humility of the Son. Satan o f f e r i n g "Deliverance" ( I I , 465) to h i s f e l l o w rebels i s a parodic f o i l to the Son p i e r c i n g the s i l e n c e i n heaven with "the fulness ... of love d i v i n e " ( I I I , 225): Behold mee then, mee f o r him, l i f e f o r l i f e I o f f e r , on mee l e t thine anger f a l l ; 38 Account mee man; I for his sake w i l l leave Thy bosom, and t h i s g l o r y next to thee Freely put o f f , and f o r him l a s t l y d ie Well pleas'd, on me l e t Death Wreck a l l h i s rage .... ( I l l , 236-241) The caesuras i n l i n e 236 accentuate the c l i m a c t i c o f f e r to sub s t i t u t e s e l f f o r man, and the " f a l l " ending l i n e 237 stresses the se v e r i t y of d i v i n e wrath which he w i l l expose himself to. In contrast to Satanic e g o c e n t r i c i t y , the r e p e t i t i o n of "mee" and " I " here orchestrates the Son's f r e e s a c r i f i c e of h i s own l i f e i n order to make grace pos s i b l e . The Son expresses i n these l i n e s the new and "better f o r t i t u d e / Of Patience and Heroic Martyrdom" (IX, 312-313): subordination to the u n i v e r s a l p r i n c i p l e of love supersedes egocentric enter-p r i s e . The Son's heroic martyrdom i s so potent that even i n s i l e n c e h i s ch a r i t y reverberates throughout a l l of,heaven: His words here ended, but his meek aspect S i l e n t yet spake, and breath'd immortal love To mortal men, above which only shone F i l i a l obedience: as a s a c r i f i c e Glad to be o f f e r ' d , he attends the w i l l Of h i s great Father. ( I l l , 266-271) The Son appoints himself as the p r i e s t l y "Intercessor" (XI, 19) i n t e r p r e t i n g man's mute sighs (1. 31), o f f e r i n g to God the f r u i t s of c o n t r i t i o n which are "of more pleasing sayor" (1.26), than a l l man could have produced i n Edenic innocence. He addresses the Father: Now therefore bend thine ear To s u p p l i c a t i o n , hear h i s sighs though mute; U n s k i l f u l with what words to pray, l e t mee Interpret f o r him, mee his Advocate 39 And p r o p i t i a t i o n , a l l h i s works on mee Good or not good i n g r a f t , my Merit those S h a l l perfect, and for these my Death s h a l l pay. (XI, 30-36) The i t e r a t i o n of "mee" again resounds with s a c r i f i c i a l love. The s y n t a c t i c a l p a r a l l e l of "my M e r i t " and "my Death" underscores the heroic ethos where martyrdom i s the mark of genuine grandeur. In c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to Satan's r e b e l l i o n "from sense of i n j u r ' d merit" ( I , 98), the Son forsakes " a l l to save/ A world from u t t e r l o s s " ( I I I , 307-308), and proves himself "By Merit more than B i r t h r i g h t Son of God" (1. 309). And the Father's d i s t i n c t i o n of h i s begotten Son as the worthiest image of himself echoes the heroism centered i n s e l f - l e s s love: ... i n thee Love hath abounded more than Glory abounds, < Therefore thy Humiliation s h a l l exalt With thee thy Manhood also to t h i s Throne .... (11. 311-314) The Son i s the exalted hero i l l u s t r a t i n g the paradoxical humiliation which i s stronger than s e l f - g l o r i f i c a t i o n , and his example reverberates throughout Paradise Lost. The c l i m a c t i c syntax i n the Father's acceptance of the Son's o f f e r exclaims the future v i c t o r y : So Man, as i s most j u s t , S h a l l s a t i s f y f o r Man, be judg'd and d i e , And dying r i s e , and r i s i n g with him r a i s e His brethern, ransom'd with h i s own dear l i f e . ( I l l , 294-297) The l a s t important word i n one clause i s repeated as the f i r s t important word i n the next, and the e f f e c t of succeeding clauses arranged i n a r i s i n g order 40 of importance i s to celebrate the triumph where "Heav'nly love s h a l l outdo H e l l i s h hate" (1. 298). This i s the glory coinciding with the Son's future incarnation as " V i r g i n Seed" (1. 284). But, as Charles Williams comments, i t i s s i g n i f i c a n t that Milton did not choose any such august t i t l e as the metaphorical meaning of Seed—the triumphant C h r i s t — c h o o s i n g rather to focus on the simple l i t e r a l meaning. When Eve says "By mee the Promis'd Seed s h a l l a l l r e s t o r e " (XII, 623), the reader does not p i c t u r e the devoted, s e l f -abandoned Son g l o r i o u s i n the war i n heaven; instead, he i s confronted with 2 an intimate smallness that i s almost i n v i s i b l e . The Son's coming grandeur appears diminutive i n comparison to Satanic energy: s p i r i t u a l heroism over-throws the c l a s s i c a l categories of strength and weakness. The Son's embodiment of the true image of heroism i s also evident i n his r o l e as the judge of f a l l e n man. As the Father says, the Son's r o l e as "Vicegerent" (X, 56) of d i v i n e j u s t i c e i l l u s t r a t e s the r e c i p r o c a l r e l a t i o n of j u s t i c e and mercy: Easy i t may be seen that I intend Mercy colleague with J u s t i c e , sending thee Man's f r i e n d , h i s Mediator, h i s design'd Both Ransom and Redeemer voluntary, And destin'd Man himself to judge Man f a l l ' n . (X, 58-62) The Son f u l l y i d e n t i f i e s himself with h i s chosen messianic destiny, and embarks on the task conscious that the burden of s i n must f a l l on himself. He answers the Father, "I go to judge/ On Earth these thy transgressors, but thou know'st,/ Whoever judg'd, the worst on mee must l i g h t " (X, 71-73). The Messiah i s the "mild Judge and Intercessor" (1. 96), at once "both Judge and Savior" (1. 209) who ... disdain'd not to begin Thence f o r t h the form of servant to assume, 41 As when he wash'd h i s servants' f e e t , so now As Father of his Family he clad Thir nakedness with Skins of Beasts ... Nor hee t h i r outward only with the Skins Of Beasts, but inward nakedness, much more Opprobrious, with h i s Robe of righteousness, Arraying cover'd from h i s Father's s i g h t . (11. 213-217, 220-223) The Son exemplifies even as judge the humility and magnanimity d e f i n i n g the poet's heroic ethos. He meets man as a " p i t y i n g " (1. 211) father concerned for the needs of h i s defenceless c h i l d r e n . The act of c l o t h i n g Adam and Eve's phy s i c a l nakedness i s emblematic of the greater work of covering s p i r i t u a l nakedness, and, s i g n i f i c a n t l y , the extension of the Son's righteous-ness to.man i s not r e f e r r e d to as a future event, but one which takes place alongside the judgment. The Son's defining c h a r a c t e r i s t i c i s s a c r i f i c i a l c h a r i t y , and h i s powers are e t e r n a l . And Adam recognizes h i s judge as the archetypal hero. When Adam responds to Eve's attempts at r e c o n c i l i a t i o n with love, he associates the m e r c i f u l example of the Son with h i s own newly acquired understanding of penitence. Remember with what mild And gracious temper he both heard and judg'd Without wrath or r e v i l i n g .... ... h i s timely care Hath unbesought provided, and h i s hands Cloth'd us unworthy, p i t y i n g while he judg'd .... What better can we do, than to the place Repairing where he judg'd us, prostrate f a l l Before him reverent, and there confess Humbly our f a u l t s , and pardon beg, with tears ... 42 Of sorrow unfeign'd, and humiliation meek. (X, 1046-1048, 1057-1059, 1086-1089, 1092) The Son i s the precedent for heroic martyrdom from whom Adam takes h i s example. Later Adam learns from Michael of the s a c r i f i c e of C h r i s t , and internalizes the heroic stance based on obedience to God: Henceforth I lear n , that to obey i s best, And love with fear the only God ... Taught t h i s by h i s example whom I now Acknowledge my Redeemer ever b l e s t . (XII, 561-562, 572-573) Furthermore, the Son's creation of the universe manifests the b e n e f i -cence c e n t r a l to h i s heroic stance. He. i s the a l l - c r e a t i n g Logos, " t h ' Omnific Word" (VII, 217), who infuses disorder with the superior power of di v i n e c h a r i t y . The poet delineates the Son as the epitome of s p i r i t u a l strength, the summation of c r e a t i v i t y i n c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to the i n f e r i o r a n n i h i l a t i v e f o r c e of Satan's c l a s s i c a l heroism. ... Meanwhile the Son On h i s great Expedition now appear'd, G i r t with Omnipotence, with Radiance crown'd Of Majesty Divine, Sapience and Love Immense, and a l l h i s Father i n him shone. (VII, 192-196) The numberless throng accompanying h i s c h a r i o t , supported with " C e l e s t i a l Equipage" (1. 203) from "the Armory of God" (1. 200), s i g n i f i e s the theocentric s p i r i t u a l i t y superior to egocentric rage. The c l a s s i c a l imagery i s transcended by an omnipotence infused with "Sapience and Love/ Immense." The archetypal hero i s the same f i g u r e who exercises u n i v e r s a l order. The very "Harmonious sound" (1. 206) of heaven's gates opening "On golden Hinges moving" (1. 207) 43 announces the reig n of the Son f u l f i l l i n g the Father's w i l l , and t h i s contrasts i r o n i c a l l y with the a n t i h e r o i c Satan re q u i r i n g Sin's agreement to unbolt the gates of h e l l : ... on a sudden op'n f l y With impetuous r e c o i l and j a r r i n g sound. Th ' i n f e r n a l doors, and on t h i r hinges grate Harsh Thunder, that the lowest bottom shook Of Erebus. ( I I , 879-883) For Satan, chaos i s a "wild Abyss" ( I I , 917), "a u n i v e r s a l hubbub w i l d / Of stunning sounds and voices a l l confus'd/ Borne through the hollow dark ... With loudest vehemence" (11. 951-954), an abyss through which he can t r a v e l only "with d i f f i c u l t y and labor hard" (1. 1021). In contrast, the Son views "the vast immeasurable Abyss/ Outrageous as a Sea, dark, wasteful, w i l d " (VII, 211-212), imposes order on c o n f u s i o n — " S i l e n c e , ye troubl'd waves, and thou Deep, peace ... your discord end" (11. 216-217)—and chaos adheres to h i s a u t h o r i t y . The subsequent act of the S p i r i t of God in f u s i n g r e c i p i e n t chaos with " v i t a l v i r t u e " (1. 236), downward purging "The black tartareous cold I n f e r n a l dregs/ Adverse to l i f e " (11. 238r-239) i s p a r a l l e l to the Messiah r e s t o r i n g moral order i n the f a l l e n world. The Son f u l f i l l s the p r i n c i p l e that "to create/ Is greater than created to destroy" (11. 606-607), and the narrator, echoing the angelic p r a i s e of c r e a t i o n , asserts the indomitable power of good over e v i l : Who seeks To lessen thee, against h i s purpose serves To manifest the more thy might: h i s e v i l Thou usest, and from thence creat's t more good. (11. 613-616) ^ Man f a l l s from innocence but the beneficence of the Son, evident i n the 44 cr e a t i o n , creates greater good from e v i l . The appearance of the great Ensign of the Messiah (VI, 775) on the t h i r d day of the war i n heaven s i g n i f i e s the f i n a l d e f l a t i o n of c l a s s i c a l heroism. The equal foes "War wearied hath perform'd what War can do,/ And to disorder'd rage l e t loose the r e i n s " (11. 695-696) and, as i n the c l a s s i c a l epic, only d i v i n e intervention can obtain a r e s o l u t i o n . But the Son does not simply grant one army a m a r t i a l v i c t o r y . Rather, h i s entrance into the war announces the true heroism where superior s p i r i t u a l i t y q u e l l s m a r t i a l fury. When the Son ends the war, war i t s e l f i s defeated. And the Son's response to the Father's decree that he drive out Satan's army .expresses that submissiveness which coincides with genuine heroic g l o r y . 0 Father, 0 supreme of heav'nly Thrones, F i r s t , Highest, H o l i e s t , Best, thou always seek'st To g l o r i f y thy Son, I always thee As i s most j u s t ; t h i s I my Glory account, My e x a l t a t i o n , and my whole d e l i g h t , That thou i n me we l l pleas'd, d e c l a r ' s t thy w i l l F u l f i l l ' d , which to f u l f i l i s a l l my b l i s s . (11. 723-729) The Son understands that "to obey i s happiness e n t i r e " (1. 741), and that submission i s the paradoxical means to glory, e x a l t a t i o n and d e l i g h t . He agrees to exercise the r o l e of v i c t o r , but with the d i s t i n c t i o n that he does not i d e n t i f y himself with the r o l e . Whether he expresses t e r r o r or mildness, power or weakness, the Son i s i d e n t i f i a b l e by h i s obedience to the Father. Sceptre and Power, thy g i v i n g , I assume And g l a d l i e r s h a l l r e s i g n when i n the end Thou shalt be A l l i n A l l , and I i n thee For ever, and i n mee a l l whom thou l o v ' s t ; But whom thou hat'st, I hate, and can put on 45 Thy t e r r o r s , as I put thy mildness on, Image of thee in a l l things .... (11. 730-736) The movement from " I " to "Thou," and "mee to "thee" conveys the unbroken harmony of d i v i n e love where s t r i c t hierarchy i s transcended i n the greater u n i t y . The r e l a t i o n s h i p between Father and Son i s one of r e c i p r o c a l g l o r i f i -c a t ion where each seeks to g l o r i f y the other. Moreover, the extent of the Son's d e f l a t i o n of c l a s s i c a l heroism corres-ponds to the nature of the poet's c l a s s i c a l a l l u s i o n s to the Son's own person. Is the Son not simply a more powerful m i l i t a r y force? the reader might ask. The poet's a l l u s i o n to the v i s i o n of E z e k i e l r e s t s on t h i s question. ... f o r t h rush'd with whirl-wind sound, The Chariot of Paternal Deity, Flashing t h i c k flames, Wheel within Wheel, undrawn, I t s e l f i n s t i n c t with S p i r i t , but convoy'd By four Cherubic shapes, four Faces each Had wondrous, as with Stars t h i r bodies a l l And Wings were set with Eyes, with Eyes the Wheels Of B e r y l , and careering F i r e s between .... Hee i n C e l e s t i a l Panoply a l l arm'd Of radiant Urim, work d i v i n e l y wrought, Ascended, at his r i g h t hand V i c t o r y Sat Eagle-wing '.d, beside him hung his Bow And Quiver with three-bolted Thunder stor'd, And: from about him f i e r c e e f f u s i o n r o l l ' d Of smoke and bickering flame, and sparkles d i r e ; Attended with ten thousand thousand Saints, He onward came .... (VI, 749-756, 760-768) 46 As I have indicated i n Chapter One, the war i n heaven should be read as a d i v i n e a l l e g o r y where the meaning and not the form i s c r u c i a l . The c l a s s i c a l implications of the Son as m a r t i a l v i c t o r , charioted and h u r l i n g thunder, are undercut by the meaning of h i s wrath. This wrath i s the counterpart of heaven's laughter at " i n j u r ' d merit": "Love laughs at a n t i - l o v e , " and d i v i n e 3 j u s t i c e d r i v e s out i t s "impious Foes" (1. 831). Like the Son's chariot,"The Chariot of Paternal Deity ... i n s t i n c t with S p i r i t " (11. 750-752) announces the v i c t o r y of Truth over the f u t i l e machinations of Satan. It i s s i g n i f i c a n t that the Son's r o l e i n the war i n heaven i s the manifestation of h i s i d e n t i t y as the Messiah, God's "annointed King" (1. 718), the "worthiest ... Hei r / Of a l l things" (11. 707-708). His triumph on the t h i r d day of the war i s emblem-a t i c of the f i n a l triumph over s i n and death i n the r e s u r r e c t i o n . The great Ensign of the Messiah (1. 775) symbolizes the i n f i n i t e s u p e r i o r i t y of theo-c e n t r i c s p i r i t u a l i t y over "strength from Truth d i v i d e d " (VI, 381). With the a r r i v a l of the Son, Satan's c l a s s i c a l warfare c o l l a p s e s . The "hor r i d confusion heapt/ Upon confusion" (11. 668-669) i s ordered upon his entrance without c o n f l i c t : Before him Power Divine his way prepar'd; At h i s command the uprooted H i l l s r e t i r ' d Each to h i s place, they heard h i s voice and went Obsequious, Heav'n h i s wonted face renew'd, And with f r e s h Flow'rets H i l l and Valley smil'd. (11. 780-784) The re b e l s r a l l y t h e i r powers (1. 786) and stand "reimbattl'd f i e r c e , by force or fraud/ Weening to prosper" (11. 794-795), but no b a t t l e follows. The power of the Son d i s s o l v e s Satanic heroism. So spake the Son, and into t e r r o r chang'd His count'nance too severe to be beheld And f u l l of wrath bent on h i s Enemies. 47 At once the Four spread out t h i r Starry wings With dreadful shade contiguous, and the Orbs Of h i s f i e r c e Chariot r o l l ' d , as with the sound Of torrent Floods, or of a numerous Host. Hee on h i s impious Foes r i g h t onward drove, Gloomy as Night; under h i s burning Wheels The steadfast Empyrean shook throughout, A l l but the Throne i t s e l f of God. F u l l soon Among them he a r r i v ' d ; i n h i s r i g h t hand Grasping ten thousand Thunders, which he sent Before him, such as i n t h i r Souls i n f i x ' d Plagues; they astonisht a l l r e s i s t a n c e l o s t , A l l courage; down t h i r i d l e weapons dropp'd .... His arrows ... ... wither'd a l l t h i r strength, And of t h i r wonted vigor l e f t them drain'd, Exhausted, s p i r i t l e s s , a f f l i c t e d , f a l l ' n . (VI, 824-839, 845, 850-852) As Charles Williams argues, The overthrow of the re b e l angels i s the overthrow, s p i r i t u a l l y , of a l l i n whom that d e r i v i n g and nourishing Love i s dead. The The very blaze of eyes from the chariot i n which the Divine Son r i d e s i s the spectacle of a l i v i n g and stupendous universe r o l l i n g on the "exhausted" r e b e l s . There needs no b a t t l e ; the exposition 4 of the Divine Nature i s enough. In contrast to the c l a s s i c a l g l o r i f i c a t i o n of strength f o r i t s own sake, the Son exercises strength s o l e l y to re s t o r e order: "Yet h a l f h i s strength he put not f o r t h , but check'd/ His Thunder i n mid Volley, f o r he meant/ Not to destroy, but root them out of Heav'n" (11. 853-855). S i m i l a r l y Michael, 48 r e l a t i n g to Adam the f i n a l dual between the Messiah and Satan, echoes the concept that warfare i s s p i r i t u a l . He i n s i s t s that the f i n a l v i c t o r y w i l l be achieved through the de s t r u c t i o n of e v i l works, not through the p h y s i c a l defeat of Satan worthy of c e l e b r a t i o n in a c l a s s i c a l epic. Dream not of t h i r f i g h t , As of a Duel, or the l o c a l wounds Of head or heel: not therefore j o i n s the Son Manhood to Godhead, with more, strength to f o i l Thy enemy; nor so i s overcome Satan, whose f a l l from Heav'n, a deadlier b r u i s e , Disabl'd not to give thee thy death's wound: Which hee, who comes thy Saviour, s h a l l recure, Not by destroying Satan, but his works In thee and i n thy Seed .... The Law of God exact he s h a l l f u l f i l Both by obedience and by love, though.love Alone f u l f i l the Law; thy punishment He s h a l l endure by coming i n the-Flesh To a reproachful l i f e and cursed death, Proclaiming L i f e to a l l who s h a l l b e l i e v e In h i s redemption .... (XII, .386-395, 402-408) This i s the "God-like a c t " (XII, 427), the heroic martyrdom of love conquering self-ce n t e r e d c l a s s i c a l heroism. While Moses, a type of the law, could not br i n g I s r a e l i n t o Canaan, the Messiah ... s h a l l q u e l l The adversary Serpent, and bring back Through the world's wilderness long wander'd man 49 Safe to ete r n a l Paradise of r e s t . (XII, 311-314) In character with the Son ordering chaos at the creation, the Saviour w i l l . . . d i s s o l v e Satan with h i s perverted World, then r a i s e From the conflagrant mass, purg'd and r e f i n ' d , New Heav'ns, new Earth, Ages of endless date Founded in righteousness and peace and love, To bring f o r t h f r u i t Joy and eternal b l i s s . (XII, 546-551) In the war i n heaven, the Son proves himself "Worthiest to Reign" (VI, 888), and h i s re-establishment of "Holy Rest" (VI, 272) i s emblematic of f i n a l v i c t o r y . One may of course r a i s e the contention that the Son making his s a c r i f i c i a l o f f e r while conscious of the sure r e s u r r e c t i o n ( I I I , 241-253) undercuts or even makes a mockery of heroism. The sentiment underlying t h i s argument i s that the s u f f e r i n g " i n Adam's room" (1. 285) i s nothing i n contrast to the surpassing g l o r i e s of the "Anointed u n i v e r s a l King" (1. 317), and that C h r i s t ' s passion i s then merely a t r i v i a l gesture towards martyrdom. Now while the f i r s t half of the argument i s undoubtedly correct, the conclusion i s not. In Paradise Lost, Milton i s attempting to "see and t e l l / Of things i n v i s i b l e to mortal sight" ( I I I , 54-55). His poetry both expands the ordinary l i m i t a t i o n s of time and space to embrace i n f i n i t y , and collapses these same images of i n f i n i t y i n t o the experience of a s i n g l e moment. The Son's s a c r i f i c i a l o f f e r i s captured i n a few l i n e s within a vast epic; the o f f e r involves the b r i e f span of t h i r t y - t h r e e years, but the s i g n i f i c a n c e of t h i s o f f e r merits c e l e -b r a t i o n beyond the expanse of human h i s t o r y into e t e r n i t y . I t i s therefore erroneous to negate the Son's heroism on the basis of q u a n t i t a t i v e time and space. The ete r n a l paean lauding the Son's unprecedented, godlike c h a r i t y 50 merges with the poet's own v o i c e : 0 unexampl'd love, Love nowhere to be found l e s s than Divine! H a i l Son of God, Savior of Men, thy Name S h a l l be the copious matter of my Song Henceforth, and never s h a l l my Harp thy praise Forget, nor from thy Father's praise d i s j o i n . ( I l l , 410-415) The incarnate Son i n Paradise Regained embodies the heroic song defining both epics. While the disobedience of the f i r s t Adam "Brought Death into the world, and a l l our woe" (PL, I, 3), the heroism of the second Adam "Recover'd Paradise to a l l mankind" (PR, I, 3). Ce r t a i n l y the process of regeneration i s celebrated p r i o r to the advent of the Messiah. The loss of an Eden consumed with " t o r r i d heat" (PL, XII, 634), an atmosphere as parched "as the Libyan A i r adust" (1. 635), i s juxtaposed to the optimism of the human pa i r countering a s p i r i t u a l wasteland with "A paradise within ... happier f a r " (1. 587). However, Mil t o n both alludes to i n Paradise Lost and f u l l y eulogizes i n Paradise Regained the Messiah's instrumental function i n t h i s ultimate r e s t o r a -t i o n . In Paradise Regained, C h r i s t ' s heroism embodies the human choice f o r God, the obedience and c h a r i t y c o i n c i d i n g with Edenic b l i s s . I who erewhile the happy Garden sung, By one man's disobedience l o s t , now sing Recover'd Paradise to a l l mankind, By one man's firm obedience f u l l y t r i e d Through a l l temptation, and the Tempter f o i l ' d In a l l h i s w i l e s , defeated and r e p u l s ' t , And Eden r a i s ' d i n the waste Wilderness. ( I , 1-7) I r o n i c a l l y , Satan also acknowledges the Messiah's exemplary moral stature: 51 "Thy actions to thy words accord, thy words/ To thy large heart give utterance due, thy heart/ Contains of good, wise, j u s t , the perfect shape" ( I I I , 9-11). M.Y. Hughes i n s i s t s that the word "shape" here means "the absolute p e r f e c t i o n of the t h i n g — i t s form," and connects t h i s to a p a r a l l e l s i t u a t i o n i n Paradise  Lost when Satan i s rebuked by the angel Zephon: "Abasht the De v i l stood,/ And f e l t how awful goodness i s , and saw/ V i r t u e in her shape how l o v e l y " (IV, 846-848).~* I t i s noteworthy that some c r i t i c s r e j e c t Milton's d e l i n e a t i o n of a f i g u r e "Private, unactive, calm, contemplative" (PR, I I , 81) as the epic hero.. E.M.W. T i l l y a r d goes so f a r as to deny the poem i t s epic q u a l i t i e s : "How t h i s poem should be l a b e l l e d i s doubtful. None of the t r a d i t i o n a l cate-gories f i t i t . And the epic category f a i l s to f i t i t most conspicuously. I t i s too short, confined, and s i m p l i f i e d f o r the necessary epic v a r i e t y and i t ,.6 quite lacks choric character. W.W. Robson argues that Christ r e j e c t i n g the temptations "as the spokesman of pure reason",is "the f a i l u r e of incarnation in i t s most obvious form."^ The reader i s confronted with a hero a l l e g e d l y too passive to be epic, one accused of being rather the embodiment of harsh r a t i o n a l i t y than of f l e s h and blood humanness, and i t i s the reader who must decide for himself the strength of these a l l e g a t i o n s . As Satan professes the need to learn, of the i d e n t i t y of the declared Son of God—"Who t h i s i s we must learn , f o r man he seems/ In a l l h i s lineaments, though i n h i s face/ The glimpses of h i s Father's glory shine" ( I , 91-93)—so much more must the reader discover the nature of Jesus and the heroism he exemplifies. I s h a l l argue that Milton's revolutionary epic v i s i o n answers a p o t e n t i a l l y s k e p t i c a l reading of the poem. In the words of John M. Steadman, " I n Paradise Regain'd the hero not only r e j e c t s a l l ends or means that seem incompatible with h i s ordained r o l e as Suffe r i n g Servant; he also redefines the heroic 8 ethos and heroic poetry s p e c i f i c a l l y i n terms of s a n c t i t y . " The heroic ethos of the poem emerges from the c o n f l i c t between the Renaissance i d e a l of the a c t i v e hero and the Medieval c u l t of the contemplative 52 9 i d e a l . This c o n f l i c t i n Paradise Regained i s that same tension between secular humanism and seventeenth-century English Puritanism—between the Renaissance b e l i e f i n the capacity of natural man to assert his e s s e n t i a l d i g n i t y , and the r e l i g i o u s view that human v i r t u e i s contingent upon the a c t i v e power of d i v i n e grace. Satan accosts Christ with the Renaissance quest for glory and fame, attempting to inflame i n him that, t h i r s t f o r a c t i v e heroism belonging to the "most erected S p i r i t s , most temper'd pure/ Ethereal, who a l l pleasures else despise,/ A l l treasures and a l l gain esteem as dross" ( I I I , 27-29). And C h r i s t , not by any means the a c t i v e Renaissance hero a s s e r t i n g that magnanimity i s most e f f e c t i v e i n the p o l i t i c a l arena, looks a l l the more l i k e the Medieval monastic. M e r r i t t Y. Hughes comments on the Medieval character of such a Messiah. Responding to the c r i t i c a l view that Milton's C h r i s t i n Paradise Regained i s "a s e l f - p o r t r a i t of an aging Puritan taking refuge i n Stoicism," Hughes argues that Contemptus mundi was never c a r r i e d further by medieval pope or doctor of the Church than i t was by Milton i n t h i s poem. D i s i l l u s i o n l i k e h i s may have been possible only i n the t w i l i g h t of the Renaissance; and perhaps the denunciation of ancient c u l t u r e that consummates C h r i s t ' s r e f u s a l of even the noblest e a r t h l y glory could have come only from a s p i r i t to whom c l a s s i c a l l i t e r a t u r e had promised the f u l f i l l m e n t of the v i s i o n of ancient c i v i c l i b e r t y that i s painted i n Areopagitica. ^ Now while the thrust of Hughes' argument i s exactly r i g h t , i t would be mis-leading to construe Milton's p o l i t i c a l d isillusionment as a throwback to regressive Medievalism. I would stress rather that C h r i s t i n Paradise  Regained transcends the t r a d i t i o n a l dichotomy between a c t i v e and contemplative heroism. It i s s i g n i f i c a n t that Jesus' f i r s t words express his own confusion over the means to a t t a i n "public good" ( I , 204). "This perfect Man" (1. 166), awakened by the sense of a great c a l l i n g , has a l i m i t e d awareness of the nature of his messianic r o l e , and must discover within himself an answer to the problematic quest for glory and fame. ... v i c t o r i o u s deeds Flam'd i n my heart, heroic acts; one while To rescue I s r a e l from the Roman yoke, Then to subdue and q u e l l o'er a l l the earth Brute v i o l e n c e and proud Tyrannic ppw'r, T i l l t r u t h were freed, and equity r e s t o r ' d : Yet held i t more humane, more heavenly, f i r s t By winning words to conquer w i l l i n g hearts, And make persuasion do the work of fear; At l e a s t to t r y , and teach the erring Soul Not w i l f u l l y misdoing, but unware Misled: the stubborn only to subdue. ( I , 215-226) The "glorious Eremite" ( I , 8) does not simply replace boyhood a s p i r a t i o n s towards p o l i t i c a l v i c t o r y with a r e t r e a t into p r i v a t e contemplation; rather, his choice to impart the gospel becomes the mode of heroic a c t i o n . M i l i t a r y prowess cannot e s t a b l i s h t r u t h and equity: the Messiah-must o f f e r himself as the s u f f e r i n g servant i n order "to conquer w i l l i n g hearts" ( I , 222). I r o n i c a l l y , C h r i s t f u l f i l l s Satan's imperative to "Quench not the t h i r s t of glory , but augment" ( I I I , 38): he transcends the secular concept of the a c t i v e hero by h i s revolutionary v i s i o n of man a t t a i n i n g e t e r n a l glory i n d i r e c t proportion to h i s submission to God. This i s the theocentric heroism which synthesizes the tension between secular humanism and seventeenth-century E n g l i s h Puritanism, and creates a mode of existence which i s , paradoxically, "more humane, more heavenly" ( I , 221). As Eden resembles heaven, so i t i s only that which most c l o s e l y resembles d i v i n e beneficence 54 which r e a l i z e s humanness. Chris t unites i n himself the one impulse f o r action and the other of submission to grace: i t i s only the human choice for God, made perfect i n the Messiah, and r e f l e c t e d i n men, which can r a i s e Eden i n the "waste Wilderness" ( I , 7). The essence of theocentric humanism i s that the hero does not seek his own glory, but h i s Father's, and, i n so doing, paradoxically, i s himself elevated; S h a l l I seek gl o r y then, as v a i n men seek Oft not deserv'd? I seek not mine, but h i s Who sent me, and thereby witness whence I am. ( I l l , 105-107) As the Father says i n Paradise Lost, the Son's choice to g l o r i f y God i n turn exalts both himself and repentant mankind ( I I I , 312-314). M.M. Mahood observes t h i s of theocentric heroism: 'Not I, Lord, but Thou': Milton's ultimate f e e l i n g about the t h i r s t for glory i s that, l i k e other humanist impulses, i t i s a divinely-bestowed q u a l i t y which can exalt or debase the mind according to whether i t i s given a God-ward or selfward d i r e c t i o n . I t becomes a st o l e n f i r e only when man 'thinks to break out into sudden blaze' for h i s own glory. ^ Thus, i n Paradise Regained, Christ i s the very image of a J o b - l i k e patience superior to f r e n e t i c c l a s s i c a l a c t i v i t y . He i s "th'exalted man" ( I , 36) of whom the Father prophecies, By Humiliation and strong Sufferance: His weakness s h a l l o'ercome Satanic strength .... (I, 160-161) In Paradise Lost, heaven, h e l l , and Eden are both p h y s i c a l and symbolic environments. S i m i l a r l y , i n Paradise Regained, the wilderness and garden landscapes have both psychological and s p i r i t u a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . The wilderness environment i s not only symbolic of the s p i r i t u a l wasteland that i s the 55 12 f a l l e n world, but of C h r i s t ' s own psyche. Jesus r e c a l l s Mary's words that he ought to a t t a i n the "height [ of ] sacred v i r t u e and true worth" ( I , 231), and so "By matchless Deeds express [his] matchless s i r e " (1. 233). Real i z i n g that h i s "way must l i e / Through many a hard assay even to the death 1 ( I , 263-264), he follows the inner leading into the wilderness—-"A pathless Desert, dusk with h o r r i d shades;/ The way he came not having mark'd, return/ Was d i f f i c u l t , by human steps untrod" ( I , 296-298). I t i s noteworthy that t h i s a l l u s i o n to the wasteland also adumbrates C h r i s t ' s v i c t o r y : he i s the sup e r l a t i v e hero, the f i r s t man to make the d i f f i c u l t r e t urn from the wi l d e r -ness. The s p e c i f i c a l l y human temptations occurring within the framework of the two dreams are inner. The wilderness represents Jesus' psychomachia between secular versions of the messianic r o l e and h i s own not f u l l y a r t i c u -lated v i s i o n : i t i s a wilderness he must pass through i n order to r e a l i z e his inner c a l l i n g . Indeed, the "waste Wilderness" ( I , 7) becoming "a flow'ry v a l l e y " (IV, 586) and "a green bank" (IV, 587) i s i n d i c a t i v e of the d i f f i c u l t process of heroic choice. C h r i s t ' s r e j e c t i o n of the f i r s t temptation to transform stones into bread establishes h i s t h e o c e n t r i c i t y : "Man l i v e s not by Bread only, but each Word/ Proceeding from the mouth of God" ( I , 349-350). But both t h i s , f i r s t temptation and the f i n a l one on the pinnacle of the temple address h i s d i v i n i t y . The temptations outside of the dream framework are important because C h r i s t r e j e c t s there the use of d i v i n e powers, and so enters the f r a y as a human e n t i t y only. But i t i s p r e c i s e l y i n those temptations framed by the two dreams that Jesus wins by merit h i s t i t l e as the exemplary human hero. Both the nature of the dreams and the landscape Jesus encounters upon waking are i n d i c a t i v e of the "innerness" of these temptations: the Nazarene i s 13 being tested i n h i s e s s e n t i a l human cre a t u r e l i n e s s and f r a i l t y . The environment which Chri s t awakens to a f t e r h i s dream of food implies hi s receptiveness to a Satan "Not r u s t i c as before, but seemlier c l a d " 56 ( I I , 299). The Nazarene f i n d s that the s p i r i t u a l refreshment he partook of i n h i s dream with E l i j a h or "as a guest with Daniel" ( I I , 278) "was but a. dream" (1. 283), and that waking r e a l i t y c o nsists of both hunger and s o l i t u d e . However, to the reader's s u r p r i s e , the "waste Wilderness" of s p i r i t u a l t e s t i n g appears to have undergone a ge n i a l transformation. Solitude remains, but he saw ... a pleasant Grove, With chant of tuneful Birds resounding loud. Thither he bent h i s way, determin'd there To r e s t at noon, and enter'd soon the shade High r o o f t , and walks beneath, and a l l e y s brown That open'd i n the midst a woody Scene; Nature's own work i t seem'd (Nature taught Art) And to a Superstitious eye the haunt Of Wood Gods and Wood Nymphs .... ( I I , 289-297) The a r t i f i c i a l q u a l i t y of the v i s i o n where "Nature taught A r t " together with the element of c l a s s i c a l paganism suggests i t s dangers. This i s a counter-f e i t nature i n which only the "Superstitious eye" can imagine a ge n i a l innocence. While the reader i s given no i n d i c a t i o n that Christ t r u s t s the delusory b l i s s , I do think one i s nonetheless meant to f e e l the p o t e n t i a l f a l l . A fter t h i s dream, the Nazarene, tested e n t i r e l y i n h i s human capacity, i s vulnerable to the sudden i n t r u s i o n of e v i l . Furthermore, the v i s i o n a r y emphasis of the subsequent temptations r e i n f o r c e s t h e i r e s s e n t i a l inwardness; the debate i s , i n John Donne's phrase, "a dialogue of one," and t h i s f a c t 14 introduces the powerful dramatic tension of the poem. Satan accosts Christ with the problematic quest for glory and fame, one which he has already begun to answer for himself, and, i n t h i s sense, the temptations framed by the two dreams are inner. 57 The Messiah b a f f l e s Satan's conventional v i s i o n of heroic value. The adversary rebukes B e l i a l ' s suggestion to l u r e C h r i s t with p h y s i c a l l u s t , denouncing what must be "a t r i v i a l toy" ( I I , 223) i n h i s preference for the "manlier objects" (1. 225) having "more show/ Of worth, of honor, glory, and popular p r a i s e " (11. 226-227). But C h r i s t ' s performance i n Paradise Regained i s the continual reduction of Satan's "manlier object," "Rocks whereon great-est men have o f t e s t wreck'd" (1. 228), to t r i v i a l toys. The m a t e r i a l i s t i c argument that "Great acts require great means of e n t e r p r i s e " ( I I , 412), and that "Virtue, Valor., Wisdom s i t i n want" (1. 431), i s l o s t on the man who r e a l i z e s that "Wealth without these three i s impotent/ To gain dominion or to keep i t gain'd" (11. 433-434). The Nazarene maintains the stance that "strength from Truth d i v i d e d " (PL, VI, 381) i s impotent—"Witness those ancient Empires of the Earth/ In height of a l l t h i r flowing wealth d i s s o l v ' d " (PR, I I , 435-436)—and argues rather that "men endu'd with [ V i r t u e , Valor, Wisdom] have o f t a t t a i n ' d / In lowest poverty to highest deeds" (11. 437-438). Satan r e i n f o r c e s t h i s c e n t r a l temptation of fame and glory with the argument that God himself "seeks glory,/ And for h i s glory a l l things made, a l l things/ Orders and governs" ( I I I , 110-112). And Christ counters the assault with the important q u a l i f i c a t i o n that glory "to God alone of r i g h t belongs" (1. 141) since the end of the Father's c r e a t i v i t y i s not s e l f - g l o r i f i c a t i o n , but the c e l e b r a t i o n of eternal goodness ( I I I , 122-126). (Such a c e l e b r a t i o n of beneficence i s only s e l f - g l o r i f i c a t i o n i n a transcendent sense, not in an e g o t i s t i c a l one.). As I have already observed, the Messiah stresses the theocentric nature of genuine glory ( I I I , 105-107). He chooses to subordinate the" d e s i r e for glory to the greater cause of beneficence, p r e f e r r i n g the heroic mode characterized "By deeds of peace, by wisdom eminent./ By patience, temperance" ( I I I , 91-92), and so a t t a i n s the "true glory and renoun, fwhich] God/ Looking on th'Earth, with approbation marks/ The j u s t man" ( I I I , 60-63). C h r i s t ' s p o l i t i c a l perspective underlines h i s self-image as the 58 s u f f e r i n g servant. He responds to Satan's c a l l to f u l f i l l I s r a e l ' s p o l i t i c a l expectations with a philosophic quietude: " A l l things are best f u l f i l l ' d i n t h e i r due time,/ And time there i s for a l l things, Truth hath , s a i d " ( I I I , 182-183)'. But t h i s quietude unmoved by Satanic frenzy i s not, f i n a l l y , passive. Satanic a c t i v i t y i s rather the kind of s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e n e s s which Frye r e f e r s to as "entropy;" C h r i s t , i n f a c t , penetrates Satanic pretension i n order to assert that p o s i t i v e a c t i o n of a moral n a t u r e . ^ The Messiah reverses c l a s s i c a l epic values with the paradox that while s p i r i t u a l strength may be r i d i c u l e d as secular weakness, secular strength i l l u s t r a t e s s p i r i t u a l i n eptitude: "Thy p o l i t i c maxims, or that cumbersome/ Luggage of war there shown me, argument/ Of human weakness rather than of strength" ( I I I , 400-402). Death i t s e l f proves that secular conquerors, deformed by the code of Mars, are l e s s than human: "Conqueror Death discover[s] them scarce men,/ R o l l i n g i n b r u t i s h v i c e s , and deform'd,/ Vio l e n t or shameful death t h i r due reward" ( I I I , 85-87). P o l i t i c a l games are thus i n d i c a t i v e of human f r a i l t y , and that which appears weak—humility, p a t i e n c e — i s true strength and true humanness. He asserts that a p o l i t i c a l s a l v a t i o n can be no s o l u t i o n to the greater problem of self-enslavement: "What wise and v a l i a n t man would seek to f r e e / These thus degenerate, by themselves enslav'd,/ Or could of inward slaves make outward f r e e ? " (IV, 143-145) Now, aside from t h i s r a d i c a l negation of p o l i t i c a l e nterprise, Christ does introduce a d e f i n i t i o n of worthy kingship. . .. a Cr own, Golden i n show, i s but a wreath of thorns, • _ Brings dangers, troubles, cares, and sleepless nights To him who wears the Regal Diadem, When on h i s shoulders each man's burden l i e s : For t h e r e i n stands the o f f i c e of a King, His Honor, V i r t u e , Merit and c h i e f Praise, 59 That for the Public a l l t h i s weight he bears. ( I I , 458-465) The earthly King only exercises j u s t reign i n proportion to his s p i r i t u a l i d e n t i t y as the s u f f e r i n g servant ( I I , 469-472). However, to underline the basic i r r e c o n c i l a b i l i t y of p o l i t i c a l r u l e and s p i r i t u a l leadership i n a f a l l e n world, the Messiah continues to say that i t i s "more Kingly" (1. 476) to guide the inner man into t r u t h than to govern the outer man by what must often be force ( I I , 473-480). And to emphasize the i n t r i n s i c s p i r i t u a l i t y of worthy kingship, C h r i s t o f f e r s the democratic view that the v i r t u o u s i n d i v i -dual expresses an innate n o b i l i t y f a r superior to ephemeral p o l i t i c a l power: "Yet he who reigns within himself, and r u l e s / Passions, Desires, and Fears, i s more a King;/ Which every wise and v i r t u o u s man a t t a i n s " ( I I , 466-468). F i n a l l y , greater n o b i l i t y i s expressed rather i n s e l f l e s s g i v ing than i n self-aggrandizement, for however noble the o r i g i n a l p o l i t i c a l motive may have been: "to give a Kingdom hath been thought/ Greater and nobler done, and to lay down/ Far more magnanimous than to assume" ( I I , 481-483). The Nazarene now f u l l y a r t i c u l a t e s t h e ' s p i r i t u a l i t y c e n t r a l to achieving the "public good" (I , 204), and prophecies on the coming of h i s kingdom. Know therefore when my season comes to s i t On David's Throne, i t s h a l l be. l i k e a tree Spreading and overshadowing a l l the Earth, Or as a stone that s h a l l to pieces dash A l l Monarchies besides throughout the world And of my Kingdom there s h a l l be no end .... (IV, 146-151) The v i o l e n c e attending the establishment of t h i s eternal kingdom i s that which ends v i o l e n c e . I would l i k e to return now to the s k e p t i c a l reading of Paradise Regained. I have already r e f e r r e d to both T i l l y a r d ' s r e f u t a t i o n of C h r i s t as an epic 60 character, and Robson's a s s e r t i o n that the Nazarene's r a t i o n a l i t y negates the incarnation. A major problem that the reader has with t h i s Messiah i s that he appears so u n l i k e the r i c h compassion evident i n Paradise Lost. Even i f we can accept, i n answer to T i l l y a r d , that C h r i s t ' s patience redefines heroism s u c c e s s f u l l y , we must s t i l l ask i f i t i s possible that the Messiah's undaunted exercise of reason i s compatible with love. C h r i s t ' s r e j e c t i o n of an earthly fame bestowed by f o o l i s h humanity has been construed as the harsh voice of reason devoid of the d i v i n e c h a r i t y he ostensibly embodies. For what i s glory but the blaze of fame, The people's p r a i s e , i f always p r a i s e unmixt? And what the people but a herd confus'd, A miscellaneous rabble, who e x t o l Things vulgar, and w e l l weigh'd, scarce worth the praise? ( I l l , 47-51) The sentiment underlying such a c r i t i c i s m i s that the s a c r i f i c i a l love expressed i n Paradise L o s t , i s incompatible with the derogatory view of mankind as "a herd confus'd,/ A miscellaneous rabble." I t does not, of course, n e c e s s a r i l y follow that the Saviour should dismiss mankind i n such an a r i s t o c r a t i c fashion. But I would argue f i r s t that the derogatory tone i s not as c o n c l u s i v e l y derogatory as i t may i n i t i a l l y appear, and, second, that t h i s perspective of mankind i s e n t i r e l y compatible with a c h a r i t y defined by "Mercy and J u s t i c e both ...[though] Mercy f i r s t and l a s t s h a l l b r i g htest shine" (PL, I I I , 132-134). F i r s t , the poet does not intend to j u s t i f y the ways of God to mankind c o l l e c t i v e l y , but rather to i n d i v i d u a l men. That i s as much as to say that the process of heroic choice i s the burden of the i n d i v i d u a l , not of the species, and that i t i s the i n d i v i d u a l who may s t r i v e for the s p i r i t u a l i t y which i s both "more humane, more heavenly" (PR, I, 221). The i n d i v i d u a l thus d i s t i n g u i s h i n g himself from c o l l e c t i v e confusion i n f a c t celebrates the human transcendence over i n t r i n s i c f r a i l t y . Second, d i v i n e 61 c h a r i t y i s founded i n that l o g i c or j u s t i c e which makes love i t s e l f meaning-ful . . The j u s t i c e which r e j e c t s f o l l y d o v e t a i l s with the mercy that e f f e c t s s a l v a t i o n . C l e a r l y , the Nazarene r e j e c t i n g c o l l e c t i v e human f o l l y i s the same man who meekly prefers to "teach the e r r i n g Soul/ Not w i l f u l l y misdoing, but unware Misled" ( I , 224-226). The term "herd" even r e c a l l s the image of the shepherd anxious to feed h i s f l o c k , anxious to rescue " w i l l i n g hearts" ( I , 222) from vast i n d i f f e r e n c e . Thus, C h r i s t ' s consciousness of mankind's unheroic p o r t r a i t only underlines the depth of h i s s a c r i f i c i a l o f f e r . S i m i l a r l y , C h r i s t ' s response to secular learning has been a much disputed point. I t appears outrageously contradictory that a poet so deeply indebted to the c l a s s i c a l heritage would thus construe the wisdom of Greece as " f a l s e ... l i t t l e e l s e but dreams,/ Conjectures, f a n c i e s , b u i l t on nothing f i r m " (IV, 291-292). Aside from the f a c t that the Nazarene's v o i c e i s not neces-s a r i l y always the poet's, a cl o s e r examination of the nature of the r e j e c t i o n shows that i t i s f a r from being the product o f . s e n i l i t y , pessimism, or both. The quarrel Christ has with secular knowledge i s moral rather than i n t e l l e c -t u a l . He i s f u l l y versed i n the c l a s s i c a l h e r i t a g e — " T h i n k not but that I know these things; or think/ I know them not" (IV, 286-287)—and i t i s out of h i s awareness of the f i n a l f u t i l i t y of secular humanism that he prefers the knowledge of r e v e l a t i o n : "he who rec e i v e s / Light from above, from the fountain of l i g h t , / No other doctrine needs, though granted true" (IV, 288-290). He rebukes the general "Philosophic p r i d e " (1. 300) of men who " i n themselves seek v i r t u e , and to themselves/ A l l g l o r y arrogate, to God give none" (11. 314-315). But Jesus does not, i n turn, o f f e r God a l l glory and men none. Plato he c r e d i t s with genuine wisdom f o r having "profess'd/ To know t h i s only, that he nothing knew" (11. 293-294). On a more p o s i t i v e note, he pays t r i b u t e to Socrates as an example of the humane quest for t r u t h . Poor Socrates (who next more memorable?) By what he taught and suffer'd for so doing, 62 For truth's sake s u f f e r i n g death unjust, l i v e s now Equal i n fame to proudest Conquerors. ( I l l , 96-99) S i g n i f i c a n t l y , Christ adds to the b i b l i c a l heritage of s p i r i t u a l grandeur— "Gideon and Jephtha, and the Shepherd l a d " ( I I , 4 3 9 ) — c l a s s i c a l examples of v i r t u e : "Quintius, F a b r i c l u s , Curius, Regulus" (1. 446). Thus, the Messiah does not r e j e c t c l a s s i c a l achievement outright. Rather, he stresses the imprisonment of egocentric learning: one who absorbs knowledge without discernment remains "shallow i n himself,/ Crude or i n t o x i c a t e , c o l l e c t i n g toys,/ And t r i f l e s f o r choice matters, worth a sponge" (IV, 327-329). In hi s response to secular learning, Milton's Christ elaborates on the f a m i l i a r p o r t r a i t of the f a l l e n angels expressing knowledge without the in s i g h t of r e v e l a t i o n , " i n wand'ring mazes l o s t " (PL, I I , 561). The tempest c o i n c i d i n g with a sleep disturbed "with ugly dreams" (PR, IV, 408) presents the c l i m a c t i c conclusion to the temptations of C h r i s t i n his human nature. A Christ exposed to the elements underlines both h i s v u l n e r a b i l i t y and the s p i r i t u a l nature of h i s p r o t e c t i o n : ... i l l wast thou shrouded then, O patient Son of God, yet only stood'st Unshaken .... ... thou S a t t ' s t unappall'd i n calm and s i n l e s s peace. (IV, 419-421, 424-425) The strength superior to Satanic assault i s simply the human choice f o r God, characterized "By Humiliation and strong Sufferance"(I, 160), made perfect i n C h r i s t . In contrast to the Satanic i l l u s i o n following the f i r s t dream, the environment the Nazarene wakens to a f t e r the tempest i s a regenerative, Edenic emblem. 63 ...morning f a i r Came f o r t h with P i l g r i m steps i n amice gray; Who with her radiant finger s t i l l ' d the roar Of thunder, chas'd the clouds, and l a i d the winds, And g r i s l y Specters, which the Fiend had r a i s ' d .... And now the Sun with more e f f e c t u a l beams Had cheer'd the face of Earth, and dried the wet From drooping plant, or dropping tree; the b i r d s Who a l l things now behold more fresh and green Clear'd up t h e i r choicest notes i n bush and spray To gratulate the sweet return of morn. (IV, 426-430, 432-435, 437-438) Like the "morning f a i r [coming] f o r t h with P i l g r i m steps," Chr i s t i s the f i r s t human hero r e s i s t i n g temptation with a s p i r i t marked by "calm and s i n l e s s peace" (1. 425) . Chr i s t has attained the human v i c t o r y over and against the f a l s e portents, not sent from God" (1. 491), and so emerges v i c t o r i o u s from the "pathless Desert ... by human steps untrod" ( I , 296-298). Satan, acknowledging Christ to be h i s " f a t a l enemy" (IV, 525) and "Adversary" (1. 527), reduces the Messiah's achievement "To th'utmost of mere man both wise and good,/ Not m o r e " ( l l . 535-536). While i t i s to be stressed that the temptations occurring between the two dreams test only h i s humanness, i t does "not follow that he thus remains undistinguished from the best of men, the equal of a Job, a Socrates. In f a c t , even Satan contradicts h i s reduction by d i s t i n g u i s h i n g C h r i s t as the s o l i t a r y inhabitant of the metaphorical wilderness: "This Tempest at t h i s Desert most was bent;/ Of men at thee, fo r only thou here d w e l l ' s t " (IV, 465-466). His words r e c a l l the image of t h i s wilderness as "A pathless Desert, dusk with h o r r i d shades" ( I , 296) from which "return/ Was d i f f i c u l t , " by human steps untrod" (11. 297-298). Thus, the second dream and the green world upon waking e s t a b l i s h the Nazarene as 64 the one man who counters e v i l with f u l l obedience to h i s Maker. Jesus i s mankind's "Morning Star" ( I , 294); he i s "th'exalted man" ( I , 36) who wins by true merit what L u c i f e r l o s t through his sense of " i n j u r ' d merit" (PL,I, 98), the supreme hero whose moral choice represents "deeds/ Above Heroic" (PR, I, 14-15). The subsequent temptation of C h r i s t In h i s d i v i n i t y on the highest pinnacle of the temple i n Jerusalem agrees with h i s c e l e b r a t i o n as the human hero. Jesus i s , as Northrop Frye says, " i n the p o s i t i o n of a t r a g i c hero, on top of the wheel of fortune, subject to the f a t a l instant of d i s t r a c t i o n that 16 w i l l bring him down." And, as I have indicated i n Chapter One, he r e a l i z e s here the r o l e of the " l i v i n g Oracle" ( I , 460) forever s i l e n c i n g Satan's f a l s e oracular powers. Christ f u l f i l l s Satan's i r o n i c imperative to stand: the Messiah standing firm i n t h e o c e n t r i c i t y r e s u l t s i n the defeat of the adver-t sary's i n f l a t e d c l a s s i c a l heroism. The reason that t h i s d i v i n e v i c t o r y agrees with h i s i d e n t i t y as the human hero i s the following. Central to t h i s p o r t r a i t of the v i c t o r i o u s Saviour i s the poet's a l l u s i o n to Oedipus over-coming the r i d d l e of the Sphinx with the answer "man." In Paradise Regained, Chris t s i l e n c e s Satanic falsehood not so much i n . h i s d i v i n i t y , as i n h i s own s u p e r l a t i v e example of theocentric humanism. When "our Saviour meek ... Unobserv'd/ Home to hi s Mother's house pr i v a t e return'd" (IV, 636, 638-639), he embodies the quietude of "Holy Rest" (PL, VI, 272). This i s the "weakness" superior to Satanic strength. In conclusion, one must ask i n what sense " t h i s hero of patience and triumphant wisdom" i s a " s a v i o r " of men.^ Lawry points out that i t " i s d i f f i c u l t to avoid the conclusion that f o r M i l t o n "th'exalted man: ( I , 36) of Paradise Regained i s i n part exactly that: an exemplary man holding true the image of God i n man, but not otherwise d i r e c t l y e f f e c t i n g the s a l v a t i o n of other men, any more than i n the poem he would e f f e c t the l i t e r a l s a l v a t i o n 18 of I s r a e l and Rome." And I think Lawry i s r i g h t i n arguing how i t i s that 65 " t h e ' e x a l t e d man" i s at once the Saviour: " M i l t o n does not intend to show that redemption has been inhumanly c o n f e r r e d , but i n s t e a d t h a t i t i s achieved i n the height of the human choice f o r God. I t i s then that man i s r e s t o r e d 19 i n t o the sonship of God." Furthermore, as Northrop Frye argues, Pa r a d i s e Regained i s the d e f i n i t i v e statement i n M i l t o n of the d i a l e c t i c a l s e p a r a t i o n of heaven from h e l l that reason based on r e v e l a t i o n makes, and the i n d i v i d u a l nature of every act of freedom. To use terms which are not M i l t o n ' s but express something of h i s a t t i t u d e , the c e n t r a l myth of mankind i s the myth of l o s t i d e n t i t y : the goal of a l l reason, courage and v i s i o n i s the r e g a i n i n g of i d e n t i t y . The recovery of i d e n t i t y i s not the f e e l i n g that I am myself and not another, but the r e a l i z a t i o n t hat there i s only one man, one mind, and one world, and that a l l 20 w a l l s of 1 p a r t i t i o n have been broken down f o r ever. Thus, i n h i s embodiment of man's choice f o r God, C h r i s t r e g ains the theo-c e n t r i c i d e n t i t y i n t r i n s i c to man: he i s the image of heroism who i l l u s t r a t e s what i s "more humane, more heavenly" ( I , 221). 66 CHAPTER I I I : The Heroic Achievement: "A paradise within...happier f a r . " In man Milton consolidates h i s view that genuine heroism i s the exercise of moral magnanimity i n the cosmic b a t t l e between good and e v i l . That i s , man i s high-souled i n d i r e c t proportion to h i s t h e o c e n t r i c i t y , and h i s ex i s -tence i s defined by the continuous struggle between e g o c e n t r i c i t y and s e l f -l e s s magnanimity. Now the reader has been a c t i v e l y engaged i n the d i f f i c u l t process of moral choice presented by Satanic glory and, upon understanding the d e f i c i e n c i e s of e v i l , he i s ready to imagine good. With the v i c t o r y of the Son's "Humiliation and strong Sufferance" (PR, I, 160) in both works, the reader encounters the image of true heroism defined by the human choice f o r God. These two heroic prototypes have established the pos s i b l e moral options, and the advent of man generates t h e i r convergence. Heaven and h e l l await the outcome of man's response to the cosmic b a t t l e ; AdamandEve i n the garden are the centre of Milton's heroic song. It i s within t h i s microcosmic realm of the human s p i r i t that the poet and reader, r e s p e c t i v e l y , t e s t "the better f o r t -itude/ Of Pat ience and Heroic Martyrdom/ [hitherto] Unsung" (IX, 31—33) • Edenic man knows that b l i s s i s contingent upon h i s obedience, and f a l l e n man, r a i s i n g himself from the depths of despair, r e a l i z e s that the pursuit of s p i r i t u a l heroism coincides with h i s possession of "A paradise within ... happier f a r " (XII, 587). While the poet of the more p r i m i t i v e c l a s s i c a l epic i s o l a t e s only the value of worldly success, Milton, the product of a C h r i s t i a n age, i d e n t i -f i e s and embraces an heroic ethos celebrating the sacredness of the human s p i r i t . Let us for the moment consider the opposition to the supposed c e n t r a l i t y of Adam and Eve i n t h i s epic. John Dryden held that Paradise Lost, considered as a Heroic Poem, was a f a i l u r e : Milton's subject ' i s not that of an Heroic Poem properly so c a l l e d . His design i s the l o s i n g of our happiness; h i s event i s not prosperous, l i k e that of a l l other epic works; h i s heavenly machines are many, and h i s human persons are but two.'* But while the t i t l e would imply that the subject i s human f a i l u r e , the * catastrophe i n Paradise Lost, even without i t s sequel, i s succeeded by the r e s t o r a t i o n of a happier paradise regained. Nor should the reader be daunted by the grandeur of Milton's "heavenly machines" i n comparison to the f r a i l t y of h i s two human persons. In f a c t , t h i s f r a i l t y i s best suited to i l l u s t r a t e the revolutionary s p i r i t u a l i t y superior to c l a s s i c a l "might." What Dryden perceived as the f a i l u r e of Paradise Lost i s i n f a c t Milton's r e d e f i n i t i o n 2 of the heroic ethos and heroic poetry s p e c i f i c a l l y i n terms of s a n c t i t y . C l a s s i c a l c r i t e r i a f o r glor y are i n s u f f i c i e n t i n a C h r i s t i a n c e l e b r a t i o n of the human s p i r i t . Thus, i t i s not so su r p r i s i n g that Milton chose to place h i s theme f o r heroic verse (IX, 13-47) at the opening of the n i n t h book which, 3 f a r from recounting heroic deeds, t e l l s of the weakness of Adam and Eve. The only too ordinary f r a g i l i t y and even blandness of s i n f u l man underscores the grandeur of h i s f i n a l choice to both r a i s e himself from despair and r e a l i z e the n o b i l i t y i n t r i n s i c to h i s d i v i n e o r i g i n s . The heroic b a t t l e takes place s o l e l y within the arena of moral choice. Man, i n Milton's t r a d i t i o n a l theory of human nature, i s a Janus looking simultaneously towards Heaven and earth; earth-ward towards the brute creation whose appetites he shares and heavenward through h i s d i v i n e g i f t of reason which unites 4 ' him with the s p i r i t u a l orders. As such Janus f i g u r e s , Adam and Eve embark on the quest f o r heroic achieve-ment, .and f i n a l l y confirm the espoused heroic ethos. Now I have asserted that Paradise Lost i s a C h r i s t i a n c e l e b r a t i o n of the human s p i r i t . And t h i s r a i s e s the issue of humanism i n r e l a t i o n to the poet's heroic v i s i o n . The term "humanism" e a s i l y suggests divergent d e f i n i t i o n s . In the words of Jacques M a r i t a i n , Let us say that humanism (and such a d e f i n i t i o n can i t s e l f be developed along very divergent, l i n e s ) e s s e n t i a l l y tends to render 68 man more t r u l y human and to make his original greatness manifest by causing him to p a r t i c i p a t e i n a l l that can enrich him i n nature and i n h i s t o r y (by 'concentrating the world i n man' , as Scheler has almost sa i d , and by ' d i l a t i n g man to the world'). I t at once demands that man make use of a l l the. p o t e n t i a l i t i e s he holds within him, h i s c r e a t i v e powers and the l i f e of the reason, and labours to make the powers of the ph y s i c a l world the instruments of h i s freedom."* However, the humanistic c e l e b r a t i o n of the hero's p o t e n t i a l does not i n i t s e l f explain Milton's heroic v i s i o n . In answering t h i s larger question, the reader might also note the c r u c i a l d i s t i n c t i o n between two kinds of humanism—a theocentric humanism (1''humanisme i n t e g r a l ) and an anthropocentric humanism: The f i r s t kind of humanism recognises that the centre for man i i s God; i t implies the c h r i s t i a n conception of man as at once a sinner and redeemed, and the c h r i s t i a n conception of grace and freedom .... The second kind of humanism believes that man i s h i s own centre, and therefore the centre of a l l things. I t implies a n a t u r a l i s t i c conception of man and of freedom.^ What then i s Milton's p o s i t i o n on the tension between seventeenth-century E n g l i s h Puritanism and the strong influence of sixteenth-century Renaissance humanism—between the r e l i g i o u s view that human v i r t u e i s contingent upon the a c t i v e power of d i v i n e beneficence and the n a t u r a l i s t i c b e l i e f i n the capacity of man himself to assert e s s e n t i a l d i g n i t y ? I argue that M i l t o n transcends the opposed p o s i t i o n s i n a r e l i g i o u s v i s i o n of human grandeur. Milton's humanism ... i s that of the seventeenth century, not of the sixteenth. Worldliness and otherworldliness are so joined i n h i s nature, that he seeks to transcend p h y s i c a l l i m i t a t i o n s even while he asserts f a i t h i n matter. The 69 v i t a l i s i n g s p i r i t with which his imagination imbues a l l matter i s one means by which he resolves the c o n f l i c t . ^ Closer to the humanism of the Metaphysicals than of the Renaissance, Milton's thought i s i n tune with Donne's d e f i n i t i o n : " ' R e c t i f i e d reason i s r e l i g i o n . ' " * Of course, one may argue that Milton does not resolve even the tension between theocentric humanism and a tenacious adherence to the sole powers of grace. Let us consider only the words of Milton's God on t h i s matter. While God expounds on the nature of f r e e w i l l , i n s i s t i n g that men are "Authors to them-selves in a l l " ( I I I , 122), responsible for t h e i r r e v o l t , he seems to Contra-d i c t t h i s "authorship" of man's with the precept that man i n himself cannot el e c t s a l v a t i o n : "Man s h a l l not quite be l o s t , but sav'd who w i l l / Yet not of w i l l i n him, but grace i n me" (11. 173-174). S i m i l a r l y , the Son asserts that s i n f u l man cannot seek grace, that grace can only be found unsought ( I I I , 227-235). But t h i s apparent impotence of human w i l l i s furth e r compli-cated by the d i v i n e v i s i o n that men w i l l dwell on earth ... t i l l by degrees of merit r a i s ' d They open to themselves at length the way Up hit h e r , under long obedience t r i ' d , •And Earth be chang'd to Heav'n, and Heav'n to Earth, One Kingdom, Joy and Union without end. (VII, 157-161) The obvious question i s whether grace or human w i l l deserves praise. But the Baroque synthesis of apparent opposites, f r e e w i l l and grace, i n the above l i n e s , suggests that Milton i s not asking the obvious. Instead, h i s transcendent v i s i o n i s captured i n the paradoxical concept of "Prevenient Grace" (XI, 3) renewing man: saving grace a n t i c i p a t e s the all-important penitence i n i t i a t e d by man, and so i s able to e f f e c t s a l v a t i o n . God's w i l l d o v e t a i l s with man's, and further argument over the exact point of union i s , f o r M i l t o n , superfluous speculation. Thus, conscious of the os t e n s i b l e 70 dichotomy between the temporal and the etern a l , Milton, r e f l e c t i n g the contemporary Baroque world-view and l y r i c form, fuses these antitheses into a paradoxical synthesis. Grace i s contingent upon man's obedience, human v i r t u e upon grace, and God and man are joined i n the eternal process of exchanging l a u r e l s f o r heroic g l o r y . The d e f i c i e n c i e s of both seventeenth-century Puritanism and sixteenth-century humanism are transcended i n t h i s c e l e b r a t i o n of theocentric heroism. Adam and Eve, the f o c a l point of t h i s epic, i n turn t e s t the options of ego- and theocentric heroism. The poet found the source of a spurious heroism i n 'Mans f i r s t Disobed-ience' and of a true heroism i n 'one mans firm obedience f u l l y t r i ' d . ' The problem of heroism was an i n t e n s i f i c a t i o n of the humanist dilemma, and i n the F a l l of Adam and Eve Milton discovered both the source and the symbol of that s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t humanism which perverted the mind from a t t a i n i n g i t s true heroic magni-tude, even while i t opened the way to a c e r t a i n specious grandeur 9 of the kind t y p i f i e d i n Satan. And regenerate man marks the c l i m a c t i c f u l f i l l m e n t of theocentric heroism. The f o c a l point of Milton's heroic song i s the image of perfect human b l i s s portrayed i n the Edehic unity of Adam and Eve. This perfect couple i s the centre of the Father's "great Idea" (VII, 557): ... the Master work, the end Of a l l yet done ... ... endu'd With Sanctity of Reason ... upright ... ... self-knowing, and from thence Magnanimous to correspond with Heav'n . . . . . (VII, 505-511) Man's magnanimous stature and consequent r i g h t to j o i n t r u l e over c r e a t i o n 71 (VII, 520-521) i s obvious to Satan when he f i r s t sees Adam and Eve: Two of far nobler shape erect and t a l l , Godlike erect, with native Honor clad In naked Majesty seem'd Lords of a l l , And worthy seem'd, for i n t h i r looks Divine The image of t h i r glorious. Maker shone, Truth, Wisdom, Sanctitude severe and pure, Severe, but i n true f i l i a l freedom p l a c ' t ; Whence true a u t o r i t y i n men .... (IV, 288-295) And the b l i s s of majestic l o r d s , true to t h e i r d i v i n e image, i s acknowledged by the rebel's d i a b o l i c rage: Sight h a t e f u l , sight tormenting! thus these two Imparadis't i n one another's arms The happier Eden, s h a l l enjoy t h i r f i l l Of b l i s s on b l i s s , while I to H e l l am thrust .... Live while ye may, Yet happy pa i r ; enjoy, t i l l I return, Short pleasures, f o r long woes are to succeed. (IV, 505-509., 533-535) It i s s i g n i f i c a n t that i t i s Adam and Eve together, joined by n u p t i a l communion, who present the human r e f l e c t i o n of d i v i n i t y . As Adam i n t u i t i v e l y understands^ "In s o l i t u d e / What happiness, who can enjoy alone,/ Or a l l enjoying, what contentment f i n d ? " (VIII, 364-366) And i n t h e i r evening prayer, r e j o i c i n g over the happiness of "mutual help/ And mutual love, the Crown of a l l [human] b l i s s / Ordain'd by [God]" (IV, 727-729), they clos e i n r e c a l l i n g the promise of a larger community, "a Race/ To f i l l the Earth, who s h a l l with [them] e x t o l / [God's] goodness i n f i n i t e " (11. 732-724). Again, c h a r i t a b l e mutuality expresses man's i d e n t i t y as the quintessence of heroic 72 p o t e n t i a l . In d i r e c t r e l a t i o n to t h e i r f i t t i n g love f o r one another, Adam and Eve r e a l i z e t h e i r godlike magnanimity; so l i t u d e i s no gain. And Milton celebrates the s i g n i f i c a n c e of conjugal u n i t y i n the marriage hymn: H a i l wedded Love, mysterious Law, true source Of human o f f s p r i n g , sole propriety In Paradise of a l l things common else. ... by thee Founded in Reason, Loyal, Just, and Pure Relations dear, and a l l the C h a r i t i e s Of Father, Son and Brother f i r s t were known. (IV, 750-752, 754-757) Not only i s conjugal love emblematic of the r e l a t i o n between man and God, but also t h i s "mysterious Law" r e f l e c t s the perfect communion enjoyed by the t r i n i t y i t s e l f . F u l l y conscious of the h y p o c r i t i c a l p o s i t i o n that sex u a l i t y i s n e c e s s a r i l y e v i l (IV, 744-747), Milton portrays i n the bower of Adam and Eve a love which l i e s beyond f a l l e n experience, thus demanding the utmost of the reader's imagination: "Here Love h i s golden shafts employs, here l i g h t s / H i s constant Lamp" (IV, 763^-764). Edenic sexuality i s . d e f i n e d by an eros which i s subordinated to c h a r i t y , a r a t i o n a l , meaningful love confining i t s e l f to the prescribed moral sphere. As Adam l a t e r says to Eve, " f o r smiles frcm Reason flow,/ To brute deni'd, and are of Love the food" (IX, 239-240). And as William H a l l e r a s s e r t s : Marriage ... stands i n the focus of a l l i n t e r e s t and meaning i n Paradise Lost. I t i s the consummation of God's plan of crea t i o n on earth. I t i s the pr o j e c t i o n of the d i v i n e order, of the order of nature and of the soul, into human society. I t i s the whole of human society i n germ, the l i v i n g microcosm, t r u l y , of family, church, and state. I t i s , i n consequence, the prime object of Satan's envy, and i t s d i s r u p t i o n the f i r s t task 73 to which he addressed himself on t h i s earth. Man's f a l l ensues when the harmony and order of marriage, the r e c i p r o c a l reason and conscience, i s broken. His redemption i s foreshadowed when woman, upon t h e i r expusion [ s i c ] from the earthly paradise, declares her renewed l o y a l t y and obedience. 1^ Now Harding argues that c l a s s i c a l a l l u s i o n s such as that to Ju p i t e r and Juno (IV, 499-500) d i s c r e d i t Adam and Eve's>innocence from t h e i r very i n t r o -d u c t i o n . ^ Thus, when the Edenic couple, " d e s t i t u t e and bare/ Of a l l t h i r v i r t u e " (IX, 1062-1063), enact l u s t , they are merely r e a l i z i n g the tainted Olympus-like sex u a l i t y which the poet has already drawn att e n t i o n to. Howeve one should note that the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of Adam and Eve as c l a s s i c a l types does not Imply that they resemble t h e i r prototypes i n a l l features. In f a c t , Adam and Eve are themselves the prototypes of c l a s s i c a l grandeur, untainted, u n f a l i e n . And the reader, however hindered by hindsight, should at le a s t attempt to ,imagine innocence. Of course, a note of p o t e n t i a l e v i l does 12 penetrate even t h i s "very centre and inmost sanctuary of Milton's cosmos." These l u l l ' d by Nightingales imbracing sl e p t , And on t h i r naked limbs the flow'ry roof Show'rd Roses, which the Morn re p a i r ' d . Sleep on, Bles t p a i r ; and 0 yet happiest i f ye seek No happier state, and know to know no more. (IV, 771-775) Adam and Eve, united, express the choice of the theocentric hero: "to e x t o l / Him f i r s t , him l a s t , him midst, and without end" (V, 164-165). The reader i s given a p o r t r a i t of i n v i n c i b l e f a i t h : H a i l u n i v e r s a l Lord, be bounteous s t i l l To give us only good; and i f the night Have gather'd aught of e v i l or conceal'd, 74 Disperse i t , as now l i g h t d i s p e l s the dark. (V, 205-208) And yet, while the note of p o t e n t i a l e v i l does not disrupt Adam and Eve's present b l i s s , the reader i s conscious of the tension between happiness unaware of e v i l and the foreshadowed quest towards a happier state. Men are " t h r i c e happy i f they know/ Thir happiness, and persevere upright" (VIII, 631-632), and the human p a i r , only once questioning b l i s s , f o r f e i t s Edenic existence. The events following t h e i r separation portray the abuse of heroic p o t e n t i a l and the d i f f i c u l t choice to p r a c t i s e penitence i n the hope of renewal. I t i s only with t h e i r reunion that Adam and Eve, f a l l e n but regenerate, overcome misery and embark on a pilgrimage marked by the posses-sion of "A paradise within ... happier f a r " (XII, 587). Adam, "the goodliest man of men since born" (PL, IV, 323), i s the epitome of c l a s s i c a l excellence. ...His f a i r large Front and Eye sublime declar'd Absolute r u l e ; and Hyacinthine Locks Round from h i s parted f o r e l o c k manly hung C l u s t ' r i n g , but not beneath h i s shoulders broad .... (IV, 300-303) His hyacinthine locks f i n d t h e i r source i n both the Aeneid and the Odyssey, and t h i s a l l u s i o n i n v i t e s the reader to test him "against the acknowledged 13 exemplars of human excellence, Aeneas and Odysseus." This i s the image of "sublime"manliness, a f i g u r e whose supe r l a t i v e powers and beauty s i g n i f y h i s godlike i d e n t i t y . S i m i l a r l y , when "our P r i m i t i v e great S i r e " (V, 350) f i r s t meets Raphael, he exh i b i t s the perfect n o b i l i t y unique to innocent man. Adam ... walks f o r t h , without more t r a i n Accompanied than with h i s own complete Per f e c t i o n s ; i n himself was a l l h i s state, More solemn than the tedious pomp .that waits On Princes, when t h i r r i c h Retinue long Of Horses l e d , and Grooms besmear'd with Gold Dazzles the crowd, and sets them a l l agape .... (V, 351-357) This n o b i l i t y d e f i n i n g Adam's godliness i s the counterpart of h i s r a t i o n a l s p i r i t u a l i t y : he learns to know and love God. He i s the human hero capable of r e a l i z i n g the heroic song. In p a r t i c u l a r , Adam's f i r s t memories i l l u s t r a t e h i s r a t i o n a l s p i r i t u a l i t y Answering Raphael's request, Adam r e l a t e s h i s own experience of cr e a t i o n . S i g n i f i c a n t l y , he hesi t a t e s over the paradox of r e l a t i n g one's own c r e a t i o n — "For Man to t e l l how human L i f e began/ Is hard; f o r who himself beginning knew?" (VIII, 250-251) In c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to Satan boasting s e l f - c r e a t i o n i n a deceptive s p i r i t of i n t e l l e c t u a l gamesmanship, Adam cautiously t e l l s his story i n the hope of genuine i n t e l l e c t u a l advancement—"Desire with thee s t i l l longer to converse/ Induc'd me" (VIII, 252-253). Moveover, a s t r i k i n g f eature of Adam's f i r s t memories i s h i s heavenward gaze and i n s t i n c t i v e upright motion: " Straight toward Heav'n my wond'ring Eyes I turn'd, And gaz'd a while the ample Sky, t i l l r a i s ' d By quick i n s t i n c t i v e motion up I sprung, As thitherward endeavoring, and upright Stood on my feet .... (VIII, 257-261) This hero i s "Godlike e r e c t " (IV, 289), the majestic Image of God, "For contemplation ... and v a l o r form'd" (1. 297). He de l i g h t s i n an Eden where " a l l things smil'd" (VIII, 265), but i s not content to remain the naive p a r t i c i p a n t i n pleasure. As i n s t i n c t i v e as h i s upright motion i s h i s f i r s t a s s e r t i o n : "But who I was, or where, or from what cause,/ Knew not" (VIII, 270-271). Adam's self-knowledge regarding h i s d i v i n e o r i g i n s i s innate, and he addresses c r e a t i o n : . . . T e l l , i f ye saw, how came I thus, how here? Not of myself; by some great Maker then, In goodness and i n power preeminent; T e l l me, how may I know him, how adore From whom I have that thus I move and l i v e , And f e e l that I am happier than I know. (VIII,'277-282) And having come to know and love God, Adam expresses i n h i s f i r s t speech the theocentric humanism characterized by love. He extols the b l i s s of Eden, notably lauds Eve as the best of Edenic joys, and subordinates a l l happiness i n g r a t e f u l obedience to the Creator. Sole partner and sole part of a l l these joys, Dearer t h y s e l f than a l l ; needs must the Power That made us, and for us t h i s ample World Be i n f i n i t e l y good, and of h i s good As l i b e r a l and f r e e as i n f i n i t e , That r a i s ' d us from the dust and pl a c ' t us here In a l l t h i s happiness .... (IV, 411-417)' As the innocent counterpart to Satan's s e l f - s u f f i c i e n c y , Adam stresses that human.worth i s r e a l i z e d i n d i r e c t proportion to s e l f - l e s s obedience. Even i n h i s u n f a l l e n wholeness, man i s the f r a i l being "who at [God's] hand/ Ha [s ] nothing merited, nor can perform/ Aught whereof hee hath need" (IV, 417-419). Thus, as the prototype of c l a s s i c a l excellence and the p a t r i a r c h of theocentric heroism, Adam encounters the d i f f i c u l t y of moral choice. Now while the u n f a l l e n Adam i s undoubtedly the unblemished hero, the element of c r e d u l i t y i n h i s p o r t r a i t teases the reader's anxiety over the 77 imminent tragedy. When Adam r e l a t e s to Eve the command not to taste^ the tree of knowledge i n h i s f i r s t speech, h i s very ignorance of m o r t a l i t y — "whate'er Death i s , / Some dreadful thing no doubt" (IV, 4 2 5 - 4 2 6 ) — u n d e r l i n e s the f r a g i l i t y of h i s b l i s s . Furthermore, the f i r s t man's naivete - i s evident i n h i s i n a b i l i t y to comprehend disobedience: As he says to Raphael, But say, What meant that caution j o i n ' d , i f ye be found Obedient? can we want obedience then To him, or possibly h i s love desert Who form'd us from the dust, and plac'd us here F u l l to the utmost measure of what b l i s s Human d e s i r e s can seek or apprehend? (V, 512-518) The reader knows what Adam w i l l s t i l l discover: man may know e v i l only at the high p r i c e of l o s i n g Eden. And Adam's sense of Edenic experience as unconscious b l i s s — " I am happier than I know" (VIII, 282)—underscores the dramatic tension experienced by the conscious reader. The reader i s confron-ted with Adam's strong quest f o r knowledge i n conjunction with h i s worship of the Maker, only to learn how the father of mankind l a t e r foregoes-upward advancement i n an instant of ost e n s i b l e worship of the created. His innocent desir e f o r knowledge defines him "as one whose drouth/ Yet scarce a l l a y ' d s t i l l eyes the current stream,/ Whose l i q u i d murmur heard new t h i r s t e x c i t e s " (VII, .66-68). While Adam's i n t e l l e c t u a l appetite i s not reprehensible, Raphael introduces an ominous caution to be content with "Knowledge within bounds" (VII, 120): S o l i c i t not thy thoughts with matters h i d , Leave them to God above, him serve and fear .... ... Heav'n i s for thee too high To know what passes there; be lowly wise: 78 Think only what concerns thee and thy being .... (VIII, .167-168, 172-174) But Milton's d e l i n e a t i o n of Adam's credulous innocence i s not antagonistic. Rather, the poet i s depicting the near inconceivable condition of existence i n u n f a l l e n Eden. This i s the Adam s t i l l f r e e of "that doom ... of knowing 14 good by e v i l . " This i s the e x t r a o r d i n a r i l y sublime stature of the man hearing of e v i l while he himself knows only good. Milton's p o r t r a y a l of u n f a l l e n s i m p l i c i t y i n t e n s i f i e s f o r the reader the drama where man, deceived, chooses the doom of remembering the perfect good.that was. Whereas i t i s possible to see, as I s h a l l l a t e r a^gue, that Eve's hope to grow "up to Godhead" (IX, 877) ex h i b i t s a c e r t a i n heroic impetus, i t i s d i f f i c u l t to see Adam's choice to s i n i n any other l i g h t than weak s e l f i s h -ness. Adam i s undeceived by the pretensions Eve entertains, and h i s conscious choice to j o i n her i s l e s s than heroic, whether i t i s considered i n c l a s s i c a l or M i l t o n i c terms. Whereas Eve's f a l l exemplifies a strong egocentric heroism, Adam's f a l l negates heroism of any s o r t . His protestations of love f o r Eve only t h i n l y d i s g u i s e cowardliness. "Eve forces open a door, Adam slams one to; she claims ' a n g e l i c i t y ' and he denies h i s heavenly nature."*"' "Waiting desirous her return, [Adam] had wove[n]/ Of choicest Flow'rs a Garland to adorn ... h i s Harvest Queen" (IX, 839-840, 842), and "the faded Roses shed" (1. 893) of h i s dropped garland are emblematic of the horror he f e e l s upon understanding "The f a t a l Trespass done by Eve" (1. 889). Grieving, he addresses Eve as i f the f a t a l act were another e v i l dream: 0 f a i r e s t of Creation, l a s t and best Of a l l God's Works, Creation i n whom e x c e l l ' d Whatever can to sight or thought be form'd. Holy, d i v i n e , good, amiable, or sweet! (IX, 896-899) But the memory of her innocence beside present r u i n enforces h i s conviction 79 that nothing can undo the cause f o r h i s lamentation. In a powerful comb-inati o n of symploce and erotema, Adam c r i e s : "How art thou l o s t , how on a sudden l o s t , / Defac't, deflow'r'd, and now to Death devote?" (IX, 900-901) The d e t a i l s of her f a l l are superfluous to a man now aware of the meaning of death. And Adam adds to h i s unanswered r h e t o r i c a l question h i s r e s o l u t i o n to j o i n Eve's f a t e . And mee with thee hath ruin'd for with thee Certain my r e s o l u t i o n i s to Die; How can I l i v e without thee, how forgo Thy sweet Converse and Love so dearly j o i n ' d , To l i v e again in these wild Woods fo r l o r n ? (IX, 906-910) He i t e r a t e s , "However I with thee have f i x t my Lot,/ Certain to undergo l i k e doom; i f Death/ Consort with thee, Death i s to mee as L i f e " (IX, 952-954). Thus, at the precise moment of choice, Adam i s conscious of h i s s i n : "he scrupl'd not to eat/ Against h i s better knowledge, not deceiv'd,/ But fondly overcome with Female charm" (IX, 997-999). And h i s consciousness i s not a con t r a d i c t i o n of God's, judgment that only the f a l l e n angels are " S e l f -tempted, self-deprav'd" ( I I I , 129), but man deceived. Adam i s of course deceived by h i s overwhelming l o s s of hope in the omnipotent goodness of God, and i t i s t h i s despair that d i s t i n g u i s h e s him from outright self-depravation. The c e n t r a l question now i s the r e l a t i o n between Adam's conscious choice to s i n and the influence of "Female charm, ." Satan regards Adam's f a l l as a weak surrender quite removed from conscious choice: "Adam by h i s Wife's allurement f e l l " (PR, I I , 134). Rejecting B e l i a l ' s suggestion that Christ might be tempted by feminine charms, Satan asserts that "Beauty stands/ In th'admiration only of weak minds/ Led captive" (PR, I I , 220-222). But i t would be erroneous to assert that Milton simply portrays Adam's f a l l as the i n e v i t a b l e ensnarement of the male psyche by the enchantress. While Adam 80 l a t e r accepts t h i s view of the femme f a t a l e with remarkable ease, the dramatic tension leading to his f a l l i n fac t underscores g u i l t wholly h i s own An Adam "fondly overcome" conveys the sense of a conscious choice to forgo r i g h t reason for s e l f i s h concerns. Now the s a c r i f i c i a l appearance of Adam's r e s o l u t i o n to j o i n Eve renews the question of heroism. Eve's elated response—"0 gl o r i o u s t r i a l of exceed-ing Love,/ I l l u s t r i o u s evidence, example high!" (PL, IX, 961-962)—•unmistak-ably echoes the heavenly praise of the elected Messiah: "0 unexampl'd love,/ Love nowhere to be found l e s s than Divine!" ( I l l , 410-411) But does Eve's perspective here q u a l i f y Adam's choice as heroic i n the best M i l t o n i c sense of the word? I would argue rather that Eve's e l a t i o n i s sincere gratitude over the f a c t that she w i l l not have to meet death alone (IX, 826-830), hardly a c l e a r perception of heroism. Furthermore, Adam expresses a s i m i l a r fear of s o l i t u d e , and h i s r e s o l u t i o n thus stems rather from love of s e l f -than love of Eve. The r e p e t i t i o n of "mee," "my," and " I " i n l i n e s 906-908, 913-914, and 952-954 i s s t r i k i n g . And h i s pro t e s t a t i o n to Eve over t h e i r fated u n i t y echoes Sin's words to Satan. Adam asserts, "So f o r c i b l e within my heart I f e e l / The Bond of Nature draw me to my own,/ My own i n thee, f o r what thou a r t i s mine" (IX, 955-957). S i m i l a r l y , Satan's f i r s t . o f f s p r i n g declares she has been drawn to him by "a secret harmony" (X, 358) that moves her heart with h i s , "joined i n connexion sweet" (1. 359), and that the distance of the worlds between them has not broken the " f a t a l consequence" (1. 364) that w i l l forever u n i t e them.^ Adam's echo of the demonic i n h i s as s e r t i o n of love c l e a r l y i n d i c a t e s the unheroic stance. His concluding statement—"to lose thee were to lose myself" (IX, 959)—summarizes the weak se l f i s h n e s s at the centre of h i s choice. Of course, an unsympathetic view of Adam's s e l f i s h n e s s would be out of character with Milton's p o r t r a i t of h i s f a l l . I t i s a l l too easy to regard Adam's passionate p l e a — " n o no, I f e e l / The Link of Nature draw me" 81 (IX, 913-914)—with the cool reason of Raphael. A f t e r a l l , when Adam praises Eve as the summation of beauty i n the created world (VIII, 470-477), and i n s i s t s that, i n s p i t e of her i n f e r i o r i n t e l l e c t , "Authority and Reason on her wait" (1.554), does not Raphael indeed temper his enthusiasm with sound M i l t o n i c doctrine? The Arch-angel's dichotomy of r a t i o n a l and passionate love ostensibly sets the boundary between legitimate and s i n f u l behaviour: What higher i n her socie t y thou f i n d ' s t A t t r a c t i v e , human, r a t i o n a l , love s t i l l ; In loving thou dost w e l l , i n passion not, Wherein true Love consists not .... (VIII, 586-589) . However, a c l o s e r examination of Raphael's reasoning complicates the ready equation of h i s voice with the poet's. There i s nothing s u b s t a n t i a l l y wrong with the thrust of h i s argument: For what admir'st thou, what transports thee so, An outside? f a i r no doubt, and worthy w e l l Thy cherishing, thy honoring, and thy love, Not thy subjection .... ' (VIII, 567-570) But the subsequent r a t i o n a l e i s more reminiscent of the manipulative s p i r i t of the f a l l e n Arch-angel than of Raphael's c h a r a c t e r i s t i c wisdom. ... weigh with her t h y s e l f ; Then value: Oft-times nothing p r o f i t s more Than self-esteem, grounded on j u s t and r i g h t Well manag'd; of that s k i l l the more thou know'st, The more she w i l l acknowledge thee her Head .... (VIII, 570-574) In f a c t , Raphael's ele v a t i o n of "self-esteem" i n the attempt to protect Adam from f a l s e or undue love stands i n d i r e c t opposition to the Messiah's 82 compassionate subjection f o r mankind. Thus, Raphael's r o l e as the warner does not e n t i r e l y f i t the poet's v i s i o n of appropriate human love. Rather, Milton teases the reader with a beneficent Arch-arjgel who i s not only "absent" (VIII, 229) on the day of man's creation, but'who remains unteachable about the ordained i n t e n s i t y of the nat u r a l bond between husband and wife. And i n h i s subtle p o r t r a y a l of an "imperfect," p a r t i a l l y ignorant c e l e s t i a l messenger, Milton conveys the d i f f i c u l t problem of Adam's dual l o y a l t i e s . — f i r s t to God and also to woman. The e f f e c t of a somewhat ambiguous Raphael only underscores Adam's dilemma: i f he obeys God, as he knows he ought to, he f e e l s he w i l l lose l i f e i t s e l f . This strong sentiment cannot be quelled with Raphaelite l o g i c . Indeed, Raphael's easy reasoning appears, at the moment of Adam's choice, l i k e a mora l i z a t i o n oblivious, to the fac t of human love. And i r o n i c a l l y , t h e Adam choosing to s i n i n one sense follows the messenger's well-meaning advice: "Heav'n i s for thee too high/ To know what passes there; be lowly wise:/ Think only what concerns thee and thy being" (VIII, 172-174). For the man confronted with the p r o b a b i l i t y of the eternal los s of h i s li k e n e s s , f i t help, other s e l f , h i s wish and heart's d e s i r e (VIII, 450-451), heaven indeed appears too high. Thus, while M i l t o n i l l u s t r a t e s that Adam's f a l l i s due to s e l f i s h -ness, he does not, as I have argued, allow the reader to c o o l l y condemn Adam's concern with himself and h i s being. God may j u s t l y observe that man "decreed/ [His] own r e v o l t " ( I I I , 116-117), "ordain'd [his] own f a l l " (11. 128-129). But the reader i s not so much a spectator as an empathetic p a r t i c i p a n t i n the confusion of double devotions and wakened s e l f i s h n e s s . I should l i k e to return to Eve's echo of heavenly praise for the Messiah's love i n her e l a t i o n over Adam's choice. While I have argued against the propr i e t y of regarding t h i s choice i n heroic terms, there i s of course a latent suggestion of heroic p o t e n t i a l i n Adam's choice. Mahood i n s i s t s that t h i s 83 echo gives a double dramatic effectiveness to Eve's cry. In one way the words are an instance of t r a g i c irony, because there i s a l l the d i f f e r e n c e possible between Adam's s a c r i f i c e and that of the Messiah. But Eve's words, by bringing to mind the Son's r e c o n c i l i a t i o n of d i v i n e and human natures, sound the hope of, . man's recovery even i n the instant that marks the 'compleating of the mortal Sin O r i g i n a l ' . ^ Moreover, Adam's inverse " s a c r i f i c e " enforces upon the reader man's d i f f i c u l t p o s i t i o n — t h e choice between s e l f l e s s heroism and the tragedy of a parodic r e f l e c t i o n . Whereas i t i s d i f f i c u l t to see Adam's choice to s i n as heroic by any. d e f i n i t i o n , h i s subsequent indulgence i n s u i c i d a l despair must d i s p e l a l l b e l i e f i n a heroic f a l l . C l e a r l y , Bowra's a s s e r t i o n that "the old d i g n i t y 18 i s l o s t i n despai r " i s an understatement of the extent of Adam's weakness. In h i s s o l i l o q u y of lament, Adam f l a g e l l a t e s himself to a degree which defie s both the c o n t r i t i o n i n t r i n s i c to regeneration as w e l l as a c l a s s i c a l v i s i o n of magnanimity. In f a c t , the numerous.personal references i n l i n e s X, 720-844 underscore a masochism which i s the inverse r e f l e c t i o n of h i s deep- . seated pride. While we must regard Satan's pride as a supe r l a t i v e example of a c l a s s i c a l l y heroic a t t r i b u t e , Adam's pride here expresses only that d e f i c i e n c y of s p i r i t which appears i n c o r r i g i b l y inept. The ineptness i s evident i n the excessive lamentation over h i s own s u f f e r i n g , one without a trace,of consideration f o r Eve's s i m i l a r p l i g h t . 0 miserable of happy! i s t h i s the end Of t h i s new gl o r i o u s World, and mee so l a t e The Glory of that Glory, who now become Accurst of blessed, hide me from the face Of God, whom to behold was then my highth 84 Of happiness .... (X, 720-725) Adam's myopia i s a convincing dramatization of man's l o s s of r i g h t reason, through s i n . Adam concedes that h i s misery i s "deserv'd". (1. 726), but t h i s self-condemnation i s not an aspect of penitence. Instead, Adam's f l a g e l l a t i o n , i s a perverse expression of unchanged pride. F i r s t , when he considers the curse h i s descendents are subject to, he agonizes not so much over t h e i r s u f f e r i n g as he does over the f a t e of h i s own reputation (X, 725-743). Second, he reasons that God's omission to consult him on the question of whether or not to grant l i f e , can only be.corrected by h i s assumption of the r i g h t to end l i f e (X, 743-752). The a d d i t i o n a l contention that he was "unable to perform ... terms too hard" (11. 750-751) i l l u s t r a t e s the sort of pride which precludes penitence. Third, l i k e Satan i n two of h i s s o l i l o q u i e s (IV, 40-68, IX, 163-172), Adam reminds himself of the j u s t i c e of God. God made thee of choice h i s own, and of h i s own To serve him, thy reward was of h i s grace, Thy punishment then j u s t i s at h i s W i l l . Be i t so, for I submit, h i s doom i s f a i r , That dust I am, and s h a l l to dust return .... (X, 766-770) However, while Satan understands the beneficence of the God which he promptly r e j e c t s (IV, .68-70 , IX, 173), Adam, subconsciouslyj construes h i s lesser understanding of di v i n e j u s t i c e to the view of a God too impotent to save his c r e a t i o n . The e a r l i e r f a i t h which prompted unmeditated praise of the Almighty i s dormant here. When Adam ostensibly, accepts div i n e judgment, he i s merely r a t i o n a l i z i n g h i s foremost d e s i r e to escape that very judgment. 0 welcome hour whenever! why delays His hand to execute what h i s Decree Fix'd on t h i s day? why do I o v e r l i v e , 85 Why am I mockt with death, and length'n'd out To deathless pain? How gladly would I meet M o r t a l i t y my sentence, and be Earth Insensible, how glad would lay me down As i n my mother's lap! There I should r e s t And sleep secure; h i s dreadful voice no more Would Thunder i n my ears, no fear of worse To mee and to my o f f s p r i n g would torment me With c r u e l expectation. (X, 771-782) In e f f e c t Adam construes d i v i n e j u s t i c e to a v i s i o n of a God too impotent to reverse the i n f i n i t e wrath set i n motion by man's disobedience. For though the Lord of a l l be i n f i n i t e , Is h i s wrath also? be i t , Man i s not so, But mortal doom'd. How can he exercise Wrath without end on Man whom Death must end? Can he make deathless Death? , (X, 794-798) Adam's pessimism over man's future (X, 824-828) negates the all-important note of redemption i n the Son's judgment, and i s thus e n t i r e l y inappropriate to one whose'lnward nakedness" (X,221) has already been covered. Furthermore, Adam's perverse humility i s blatant when he considers the r o l e of the s a c r i f i c i a l v i c t i m : ... f i r s t and l a s t On mee, mee only, as the source and spring Of a l l corruption, a l l the blame l i g h t s due: So might the wrath, v (X, 831-834) His fear of death i s such that he himself immediately r e t r a c t s the pretense: 86 "Fond wish! Couldst thou support/ That burden heavier than the Earth to bear,/ Than a l l the World much heavier" (X, 834-836). Adam's misery i s but . a pale r e f l e c t i o n of the intense agony expressed by Satan: "Me miserable! which way s h a l l I f l y / I n f i n i t e wrath, and i n f i n i t e despair?/ Which, way I f l y i s H e l l ; myself am H e l l " (IV, 73-75). Adam ex h i b i t s a pride i r r e c o n c i l -able to his Maker, but he i s too much the f r a i l man to exercise demonic heroism. And Adam i s no saviour of men. At t h i s point, he has yet to accept r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r h i s own actions. His l a s t words are the most convincing: "0 Conscience, i n t o what Abyss of f e a r s / And horrors hast thou d r i v ' n me; out of which/ I f i n d no way, from deep to deeper plung'd!" (X, 842-844) No hero, Adam i s unable to save himself from the " e v i l Conscience [which] represent [s]/ A l l things with double t e r r o r " (11. 849-850). Thus, even i n pious language, Adam i n t e r p r e t s experience as a se r i e s of events c i r c l i n g around the s e l f . And the depths of Adam's confusion and despair are perhaps Milton's c l e a r e s t judgment upon egocentric humanism. The elev a t i o n of the s e l f n e c e s s a r i l y leads to "a l i v i n g Death" (1. 788). The van i t y of Adam's tortured reasoning i s most dramatic i n his misogynistic r e j e c t i o n of Eve. Out of my sight, thou Serpent, that name best B e f i t s thee with him leagu'd, t h y s e l f as f a l s e And h a t e f u l ; nothing wants, but that thy shape, Like h i s , and co l o r Serpentine may show Thy inward fraud, to warn a l l Creatures from thee Henceforth; l e s t that too heav'nly form, pretended To h e l l i s h falsehood, snare them. (X, 867-873) Forgetting both the o r i g i n of e v i l and that Eve i s h i s " l i k e n e s s , " h i s "other s e l f " (VIII, 450), Adam denounces her as "This novelty on Earth, t h i s f a i r defect/ Of Nature" (X, ,891-892), and proclaims that human s i n i s d i r e c t l y 87 a t t r i b u t a b l e to "Female snares" (1. 897). Now E.M.W. T i l l y a r d regards t h i s outburst of Adam's to be Milton's own unconscious v o i c e , and traces the 19 poet's l a t e n t grudge against women to h i s f i r s t marriage. But however tempting i t may be to i n f e r that the man "Wedlock-bound" (1. 905) to Mary Powell was a misogynist a f t e r Adam's fashion, the c r i t i c ought not to regard an author's characters as the subconscious embodiment of b i o g r a p h i c a l data, i f only for the simple reason that they are.presented by,the conscious author as a separate e n t i t y . And, as I s h a l l argue i n the case of Eve, I doubt that the poet could have been the misogynist T i l l y a r d suggests he i s . Moreover, i n the above l i n e s , Adam's accusations portray rather the moral confusion of h i s own psyche, not the demonic darkness ostensibly Eve's. Adam's in s i s t e n c e that Eve i s "the part s i n i s t e r from [him] drawn" (X, 886), though intended to i n d i c t only her, i s a t e l l i n g clue of a g u i l t y conscience repressed. And, as when Adam r e a d i l y accuses Eve before the Son out of " s t r i c t n e c e s s i t y " (X, 131)—the reader r e c a l l s that t h i s i s "The Tyrant's p l e a " (IV, 39 4 ) — s o he again r a t i o n a l i z e s personal g u i l t with the mythic view of woman as the demonic enchantress. Thus, Mi l t o n dramatizes misogyny to underscore Adam's unregenerate state. These are the embittered words of a man who protests too much. It i s s i g n i f i c a n t that the s u i c i d a l Adam remains "Immovable" (X, 938) u n t i l Eve establishes peace between them. Adam, made "fo r God only" (IV, 299), does not d i s p l a y heroism u n t i l he responds to the woman created "for God i n him" (1. 299) . Now i f M i l t o n were the s t r i c t s e x i s t he i s sometimes taken to be, then Adam, as ordained head, should have been f i r s t to i n s t r u c t a r e l u c t a n t Eve on the importance of penitence. As i t i s , the reader enjoys , the humor where Adam, j u s t rescued by a remarkably heroic woman, proceeds to inform the same of the very heroism which saved h i m — " o f f i c e s of Love [which] ... l i g h t ' n / Each other's burden i n ... share of woe" (X, 960-961). While he has hardly recovered from making a s i m i l a r e r r o r , Adam warns Eve against . 88 being; "too desirous" (X, 947) to take on the world's punishment, and h i s confident tone i s such as i f h i s better judgment had never l e f t him. Furthermore, he i s able to recognize the f o l l y of s u i c i d a l despair i n Eve which he was unable to recognize i n himself. Kindly, Adam considers the latent v i r t u e i n Eve's s u i c i d a l proposal, and r e d i r e c t s her s a c r i f i c i a l a t t i t u d e . Eve, thy contempt of l i f e and pleasure seems To argue i n thee something more sublime And excellent than what thy mind contemns; But s e l f - d e s t r u c t i o n therefore sought, refutes That excellence thought i n thee, and implies, Not thy contempt, but anguish and regret For l o s s of l i f e and pleasure overlov'd. (X, 1013-1019) The f a c t that Adam does not here confess his own "anguish and regret/ For loss of l i f e and pleasure overlov'd" (11. 1018-1019) i s not, I think, a serious omission. Rather, I would suggest i t s u f f i c e s that Adam embrace c o n t r i t i o n and regeneration at a l l . And through the comedy of t h i s leader v o i c i n g r e c e n t l y acquired wisdom, Milton i l l u s t r a t e s that f a l l e n man i s i n d i r e need of grace and, e s p e c i a l l y i n Adam's case, p o s i t i v e female assistance i s only an asset. Eve's heroic submission disenchants the deadly s p e l l Adam has woven for himself. He now r e c a l l s both the judgment upon the serpent and the gracious-ness of the Son himself (X, 1028-1059)—two f a c t o r s together which i n s p i r e v i c t o r i o u s f a i t h . For the f i r s t time since h i s choice to f a l l , Adam exh i b i t s the moral d i g n i t y i n t r i n s i c to theocentric heroism. The new man, unrecognizable beside h i s despondent double, understands that genuine lamentation follows i n c o n t r i t i o n , c o n t r i t i o n i n new l i f e . He r i g h t l y i n s t r u c t s Eve : 89 What better can we do, than to the place Repairing where he judg'd us,,prostrate f a l l Before him reverent, and there confess Humbly our f a u l t s , and pardon beg, with tears Watering the ground, and with our sighs the A i r Frequenting, sent from hearts contrite, in sign Of sorrow unfeign'd, and humiliation meek. (X, 1086-1092) It i s of course i r o n i c that Adam should v e r b a l i z e here the manner of Eve's conquest of h i s despair. He expresses the essence of Eve's lesson to him as i f i t were a r e v e l a t i o n for both of them. But Adam's unperceptiveness, aside from underscoring Eve's heroism, i s i n part the motivation f o r h i s r e a f f i r m -a t i o n of f a i t h . He seeks to both understand and perpetuate what has evaded him, and so provides the reader with the doctrine de f i n i n g heroism. And i n Books XI and XII, Adam consolidates t h i s young joyous expression of f a i t h with sound knowledge. While he has already renewed h i s commitment to Eve i n Book X, he i t e r a t e s the grand design i n Eve's r o l e : Whence H a i l to thee, Eve r i g h t l y c a l l ' d , Mother of a l l Mankind, Mother of a l l things l i v i n g , since by thee Man i s to l i v e , and a l l things l i v e f o r Man. (XI, 158-161) Thus, by wakening to fo r e s i g h t (XI, 368), Adam i s to learn from Michael the "True patience" (1. 361) which w i l l sustain the human s p i r i t throughout h i s t o r y . While i t may be argued that the lengthy b i b l i c a l n a r r a t i v e i n Books XI and XII i s a weakness i n Paradise Lost, the reader should consider that the poet, rather than r i s k the danger of an Adam e a s i l y accepting s i n and death, n a i v e l y r e j o i c i n g i n God's goodness, wanted to ensure that Adam understand the nature of e v i l , and accept both providence and the necessity 90 of personal heroism. By the end of the poem Milton's Adam must be a man who could not be patronized, however a f f e c t i o n a t e l y , by any other man. He must know the worst that Satan, s i n and death can provide i n a l l of hi s t o r y , the worst and the most complex appearances which any one of h i s readers may have experienced. Knowing the worst, he must be w i l l i n g to l i v e , to conceive l i f e as possible and as possibly b l e s t . For Adam, with h i s knowledge of the future, to be w i l l i n g to begin human h i s t o r y , as f o r the reader with h i s knowledge of the past to be w i l l i n g knowingly to continue i t , each must know of the Incarnation, the Redemption, and the F i n a l Judgment which give that h i s t o r y meaning. Within the l i g h t of such knowledge, each 21 must learn of the "paradise w i t h i n . " A regenerate Adam assumes adult consciousness through such r e v e l a t i o n . While i t i s only n a t u r a l that Adam should revert to h i s s u i c i d a l stance i n rea c t i o n to the horrors of the f u t u r e — " 0 miserable Mankind, to what f a l l / Degraded, to what wretched state reserv'd!/ Better end here unborn" (XI, 500-502)—the wisdom of Michael does r e c a l l him: Nor love thy L i f e , nor hate; but what thou l i v ' s t L i v e w e l l , how long or short permit to Heav'n.... (XI, 553-554) In f a c t , Adam's f i n a l v i s i o n i s strong confidence i n a God able to transform the greatest e v i l into greater good: 0 goodness i n f i n i t e , goodness immense! That a l l t h i s good of e v i l s h a l l produce, And e v i l turn to good; more wonderful Than that which by cre a t i o n f i r s t brought f o r t h Light out of darkness! (XII, 469-473) He i n t e r n a l i z e s the heroism whereby man most c l o s e l y expresses h i s di v i n e image: Henceforth I learn, that to obey i s best, And love with fear the only God, to walk As i n h i s presence, ever to observe His providence, and on him sole depend .... (XII, 561-564) Importantly, Adam knows that "things deem'd weak/ Subvert ... worldly strong " and that "Suffering f o r Truth's sake/ Is f o r t i t u d e to highest v i c t o r y , / And to the f a i t h f u l Death the Gate of L i f e " (XII, 567-568, 569-571). And i n the f i n a l v i s i o n of Paradise Lost, Adam i s the male v o i c e i n the heroic song. Eve, "the f a i r e s t of her Daughters" (IV, 324), i s the quintessence of feminine beauty and worth. The i n e q u a l i t y of the sexes elevates Eve as the manifestation of human glory. . .. though both Not equal, as t h i r sex not equal seem'd; For contemplation hee and val o r form'd, For softness shee and sweet a t t r a c t i v e Grace, Hee f o r God only, shee f o r God in him .... (IV, 295-299) As D.R. Hutcherson points out "The phys i c a l l o v e l i n e s s of Milton's Eve was i n ' ' ' 22 part an inheritance from many women, some of whom had been c a l l e d Eve." Milto n compares Eve by d i r e c t or i n d i r e c t a l l u s i o n to women of mythology such as Juno, Pandora, Aphrodite, Hera, Athena, a wood nymph, an oread or dryad, 23 D e l i a , Pales, Pomona, and Ceres. But there i s l i t t l e or no ph y s i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n of women i n Homer, or of Eve i n Genesis, and Milton's singular c r e a t i o n i s to be regarded i n terms of a new precedent set by such as Du 24 Bartas i n the l a t e sixteenth and seventeenth century. In h i s introduction of Eve, Milton presents a p o r t r a i t of innocence possibly suggesting, 92 ambiguously, a propensity to excessive and therefore s i n f u l sensuality. While Adam al s o wears "Hyacinthine Locks ... C l u s t ' r i n g " (IV, 301-303), i t i s argued by some c r i t i c s that the language depicting Eve's appearance r a i s e s f a l l e n Implications: "Shee as a v e i l down to the slender waist/ Her unadorned golden tresses wore/ Di s h e v e l l ' d , but in wanton r i n g l e t s wav'd" -(IV, 304-306). Stanley F i s h argues that adjectives such as "Dishevell'd" 25 and "wanton" c l e a r l y associate Eve with "the s c a r l e t woman." And to support h i s view of the a s s o c i a t i o n s Milton n e c e s s a r i l y evokes i n h i s contemporaries, F i s h c i t e s Bishop Joseph H a l l ' s example of a v i s u a l symbol f o r the wayward-ness of s i n f u l man—the image of a woman with a "'loose l o c k er r i n g wantonly 2 6 over her shoulders.'" Now while Milton's p o r t r a i t appears ambiguous, I suggest that t h i s i s because the poet does not share a Bishop H a l l ' s view of feminine s e x u a l i t y . Instead, Milton d e l i b e r a t e l y confuses the a s s o c i a t i o n between d i s o r d e r l i n e s s and moral wantonness i n order to convey h i s r e v o l u t i o n -ary image of Edenic f e m i n i n i t y . Milton's "enchantress" i s a woman whose i n t r i n s i c moral stature i s equal to Adam's: "Two of f a r nobler shape erect and t a l l , / Godlike erect, with native Honor c l a d / In naked Majesty seem'd Lords of a l l " (IV, 288-290). Adam h a i l s Eve as "Heav'n's l a s t best g i f t " ( V , 19); she i s the answer to h i s d e s i r e for "fellowship ... f i t to p a r t i c i p a t e i n / A l l r a t i o n a l d e l i g h t " (VIII, 389-391), the c r e a t i o n whom God introduces as "Thy l i k e n e s s , thy f i t help, thy other s e l f , / Thy wish, exactly to thy heart's d e s i r e " (VIII, 450-451). While Satan i n Paradise Regained r e f e r s to Eve as Adam's " f a c i l e consort" ( I , 51), and a f a l l e n , desperate husband addresses her as "Serpent" (PL, X, 867), she i s otherwise, with overwhelming consistency, portrayed as the g l o r i o u s quintessence of c r e a t i o n . The name "Eve" i n Hebrew, hawwah, means "mother of a l l being," and the poet celebrates t h i s meaning with addresses such as "Mother of human Race" (IV, 475), "Mother of a l l Mankind,/ Mother of 27 a l l things l i v i n g " (XI, 159-160). Roy C. Flannagan argues that through 93 motherhood Eve i s associated with the great and " a l l - b e a r i n g Mother Earth" (V, 338). She i s also f i g u r a t i v e l y linked with the Moon as Adam i s with the Sun, each being r e s p e c t i v e l y "Male and Female Lig h t , / Which two great Sexes animate the World" (8.148-51). Thus, Eve i s at once a character from b i b l i c a l h i s t o r y and a mythological earth, moon, and mother goddess who expresses with Adam the fundamental male-female p r i n c i p l e of the universe: "male and female he created 28 them" (Gen. 1:27). It i s thus i n t r i g u i n g that several eminent c r i t i c s should regard Eve as an example of M i l t o n i c misogyny. Dr. Johnson said that the poet had "a Turkish 29 contempt of females." J.H. Hanford says that "There i s no gainsaying the fa c t ... that the poet bears a grudge against woman as the perverse occasion 30 of man's entanglement." And B a s i l W i l l e y i n s i s t s that Milton "enlarges the s i g n i f i c a n c e of Adam's disobedience by making i t a c a p i t a l instance of surrender to 'female charm'; and in t h i s manner he i s able ... to vent much 31 of h i s personal resentment against womankind." But Eve's i n t r i n s i c moral nature negates the t r a d i t i o n a l usage of the enchantress motif as a morally i n f e r i o r being. She becomes a heroine of the f i r s t order. Now the v a l i d i t y of the consideration of Eve i n heroic-terms i s se r i o u s l y tested i n her f i r s t speech. Eve's voluntary n a r r a t i o n of her e a r l i e s t memories presents an undeniable p a r a l l e l to the Narcissus myth i n Ovid's Metamorphoses, and t h i s arch-symbol f o r dest r u c t i v e s e l f - l o v e , i t i s argued, 32 warns the reader of Eve's p a r t i c u l a r propensity to s i n . The reader encoun-ters an Eve tr a n s f i x e d by the "sympathy and love" (IV, 465) of her own image, an Eve rescued from her "vain d e s i r e " (1. 466) by the vo i c e of God. D.C. A l l e n compares Eve's apparent s e l f - l o v e to that of the angels on the f i r s t day of creation, and i n s i s t s that i t i s only d i v i n e intervention which saves 33 Eve from a f a l l at t h i s point. S i m i l a r l y , D.P. Harding compares Eve's 94 cr e a t i o n to that of the full-grown, r a v i s h i n g l y b e a u t i f u l Sin ( I I , 757-758), and stresses the following ominous conclusion: Satan sees i n Sin h i s "perfect image" and f a l l s i n love with i t . Eve f a l l s i n love with the image of hers e l f she sees i n the cle a r waters of the lake. The reader of Paradise Lost, knowing the lengths to which Satan's s e l f - l o v e , issuing f i r s t i n pride, then i n hybris, then i n the act of disobedience, has c a r r i e d him, i s e n t i t l e d to wonder whether Eve's innocent s e l f - l o v e , an offshoot of her inexperience, may not be susceptible to the same kind of 34 development. W i l l h i s t o r y repeat i t s e l f ? the correspondence between Eve and Sin i s c l e a r l y i n t e n t i o n a l , but t h i s ominous p o t e n t i a l i n Eve only underlines the magnificence of her transform-a t i o n from f r a i l naivete to s u b s t a n t i a l , v i c t o r i o u s heroism. The reader only too aware of the darker undertone i n t h i s f i r s t speech should not f a i l to note that the woman a l t e r n a t e l y s t a r t l e d and pleased with her own r e f l e c t i o n (IV, 460-466) i s an innocent. Like a c h i l d not yet self-aware, Eve acts "With unexperienc't thought" (1. 457), and when the warning voice guides her into self-awareness—"What thou seest,/ What there thou seest f a i r Creature i s t h y s e l f " (11. 467-468)—the subsequent command to follow (1. 469) i s without a reproving tone.' As N. Frye emphasizes, Eve i s not so much n a r c i s s i s t i c as 35 innocent. Moreover, Eve begins and ends her na r r a t i v e with conscious love for both God and Adam, thus d i s p l a y i n g the meek submission so i n t e g r a l to Milton's r a d i c a l v i s i o n of heroic strength. 0 thou for whom And from whom I was fdrm'.'d f l e s h of thy f l e s h , And without whom am to no end, my Guide And Head, what thou hast said i s j u s t and r i g h t . For wee to him indeed a l l praises owe, And d a i l y thanks, I c h i e f l y who enjoy 95 So f a r the happier Lot .... ... I yi e l d e d , and from that time see How beauty i s ex c e l l ' d by manly grace And wisdom, which alone i s t r u l y f a i r . (IV, 440-446, 489-492) Thus, Eve's e a r l i e s t r e c o l l e c t i o n s are the humble po r t r a y a l of growth from a naive egotism to a maturer conscious love, and, while Eve's f r a i l t y may appear to jeopardize her heroic p o t e n t i a l , i t i s t h i s very f r a i l t y , r e d i r e c -ted, which i s the mark of her heroic excellence. "Since, i n Milton's Pla t o n i c scale, human love i s both analogy and ascent to Divine Love, i t i s perhaps not too f a n c i f u l to see i n Eve's t a l e an a l l e g o r y of the human 36 mind turned from i t s egotism to the love of God." Furthermore, Eve's love speech also t e s t s the extent of her heroic i d e n t i t y . Eve, "with perfect beauty adorn'd" (IV, 634), declares to Adam: My Author and Disposer, what thou bidd'st Unargu'd I obey; so God ordains God i s thy Law, thou mine: to know no more Is woman's happiest knowledge and her praise. (IV, 635-638) These l i n e s r e c a l l Sin's d e c l a r a t i o n to Satan—"Thou a r t my Father, thou my Author, thou/ My being gav'st me; whom should I obey/ But thee, whom follow?' ( I I , 864-866)—and the contrast between Eve's f r e e choice and Sin's unmeditated p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n "a secret harmony" (X, 358) of " f a t a l conse-quence" (1. 364) underscores the i n t e g r i t y of Eve's submission. Now one might consider Arnold Stein's c y n i c a l reading of t h i s speech. Stein argues that the speech (IV, 639-656) d i s t a n t l y resembles the angelic hymn which celebrates the Son's "unexampled love" f or man, but, while the movement i n that hymn keeps returning to the subject of prai s e , "thee," there i s i n 37 Eve's poem the lack of Adam's presence. And Stein asks whether Adam's absence from the body of the poem does not indeed, at l e a s t s u b l i m i n a l l y , a n t i c i p a t e h i s abrupt disappearance from Eve's account of her dream or h i s 38 prominent absence from Eve's consciousness during the temptation. Further-more, he i n s i s t s that while the poem i s for Adam, i t is about Eve. "She is the c r e a t i v e center, perceiving objects and movements, naming and arranging them with conscious artistic delight. A poem of this kind has to be centered 39 i n the s e l f , the stimulated source of i n d i v i d u a l c r e a t i v e perception." I f Stein's reading were s e l f - e v i d e n t , then t h i s speech would indeed undercut Eve's heroic c r e d i b i l i t y . However, I f a i l to see how c r e a t i v e poetry, l i k e Eve's, i s n e c e s s a r i l y centered i n the s e l f , bound to the narrow egotism which Stein suggests. It would be equally absurd to claim that the Son's s a c r i f i c i a l o f f e r — " B e h o l d mee then, mee for him, l i f e f o r l i f e " ( I I I , 2 3 6 ) — r e v o l v e s around the s e l f . In f a c t , i t i s far more reasonable to assume that Eve, l i k e the Son, acknowledges the s e l f i n order to s t r e s s the s i g n i f i c a n c e of her g i f t . Rather than repress the importance of the s e l f , Eve c r e a t i v e l y asserts the s e l f i n order to embrace Adam's being. Her f u l l acceptance of femininity i s generously embellished with the a s s e r t i o n that n u p t i a l communion with Adam surpasses even the sweetness of Edenic existence (IV, 639-656). Thus, Eve's love speech, e s p e c i a l l y since i t follows the n a r r a t i v e on her newly acquired moral consciousness, marks the strength of her s e l f l e s s n e s s . Arid the i n t e n s i t y of Eve's joyous s e l f l e s s n e s s establishes her heroic s i g n i f i c a n c e . The i n t e n s i t y of Eve's heroic s i g n i f i c a n c e i s evident even i n her f a l l . Here, u n l i k e Adam's weak surrender, Eve attempts to r e a l i z e her strong d e s i r e for achievement with a courage which, i n c l a s s i c a l terms, i s only p r a i s e -worthy. When she suggests to Adam that they d i v i d e t h e i r labours (IX, 214), she counters protest with a r e j e c t i o n of c l o i s t e r e d v i r t u e quite comparable to that of the Aereopagitica: "And what i s F a i t h , Love, V i r t u e unassay'd/ Alone, without e x t e r i o r help sustain'd?" (IX, 335-336) But while tested 9 7 v i r t u e i s e s s e n t i a l to heroism i n a f a l l e n world, Eye's use of the argument i n Eden " i s but the r a t i o n a l i z a t i o n of her d e s i r e — t h e d e s i r e f o r temptation which i s i t s e l f the beginning of her defilement .... Knowledge u s e f u l — • indeed, n e c e s s a r y — t o the sa l v a t i o n of f a l l e n man i s worse than useless to 40 • innocence and p u r i t y . " However, Milton does not present Eve's egocentric heroism with a s i m p l i s t i c moral l o g i c . Instead, the very i n t e n s i t y of Eve in c o l l i s i o n with the Arch-deceiver momentarily, i f not permanently, withholds the reader's judgment. After a l l , i f even U r i e l , "The sharpest-sighted S p i r i t of a l l i n Heav'n" ( I I I , 691), was "beguil'd" (1. 689), i t i s not l i k e l y that a "woman created "For softness ... and sweet a t t r a c t i v e Grace" (IV, 298) should perceive fraudulence: "For neither Man nor Angel can di s c e r n / Hypocrisy, the only e v i l that walks/ I n v i s i b l e , except to God alone" ( I I I , 682-684). The d i v i n e perspective that Eve was created " j u s t and r i g h t , / S u f f i c i e n t to have stood, though f r e e to f a l l " ( I I I , 98-99) does not characterize the reader's f u l l experience of s i n . Rather, Milton's p o r t r a y a l of both Eve's c r e d u l i t y and strong heroic impetus dramatizes the d i f f i c u l t y of choice i n a moral universe. The prelude to Satan's c l i m a c t i c assault on Eve's psyche i s i n her demonic dream (IV, 799-809). Here, Satan's psychological assault on Eve, presenting the conventions of t r a d i t i o n a l witch-love, opens the c r u c i a l 41 psychic b a t t l e between falsehood and t r u t h . "The demonic attempt to corrupt the phantasy, the choice of woman as the weaker and more vulnerable instrument, the a p p a r i t i o n as an angel of l i g h t , the d i a b o l i c a l i l l u s i o n , and the nocturnal f l i g h t "up to the Clouds 1' are a l l conventional features of witch-42 c r a f t Thus, Mil t o n establishes i n Eve's demonic dream her su s c e p t i -b i l i t y to d i a b o l i c a l i l l u s i o n , not to lessen her g u i l t , but to underscore the t r a g i c consequences of her f r a i l t y . S i m i l a r l y , the reader must consider that Satan, i n the guise of the l o v e l i e s t of c l a s s i c a l serpents,attacks Eve with truths only o b l i q u e l y infected with falsehood: 98 ..• pleasing was h i s shape, And l o v e l y , never since of Serpent kind L o v e l i e r , not those that i n I l l y r i a chang'd Hermione and Cadmus, or the God In Epidaurus; nor to which transform'd Ammonian Jove, or C a p i t o l i n e was seen, Hee with Olympias, t h i s with her who bore S i r p i o the highth of Rome. (IX, 503-510) Although the address i s intended to waken va n i t y , there i s nothing f a l s e i n the assertion that Eve i s the " F a i r e s t resemblance of her Maker f a i r " (1. 538). And the subsequent appeal to the ego, a s s e r t i n g that Eden i s i n s u f f i c i e n t audience f o r the adoration of Eve's " C e l e s t i a l Beauty" (11.540, 542-T-548) , i s the sort of evasiveness that win's easy entrance to 1 Eve's subcon-scious: "Into the Heart of Eve h i s words made way, / Though at the v o i c e much marvelling" (11. 550-551). Importantly, Eve, though "unwary" (1. 614), at f i r s t r e s i s t s the serpent's intentions. Satan's f i r s t explanation of the t a l k i n g serpent meets her skepticism: "Serpent, thy overpraising leaves i n doubt/ The v i r t u e of that F r u i t , i n thee f i r s t prov'd" (11. 615-616). And the sight of the prohibited tree provokes an a u t h o r i t a t i v e r e j e c t i o n : Serpent, we might have spar'd our coming h i t h e r , F r u i t l e s s to mee, though F r u i t be here to excess, The c r e d i t of whose v i r t u e r e s t with thee, Wondrous indeed, i f cause of such e f f e c t s . But of t h i s Tree we may not taste nor touch, God so commanded, and l e f t that Command Sole Daughter of h i s v o i c e ; the r e s t , we l i v e Law to ourselves, our Reason i s our Law. (IX, 647-654) 99 However, Eve's moral consciousness i s s e r i o u s l y endangered by the Satanic l i e s which have already gained access to her subconscious. Eve's credulous f a s c i n a t i o n with t h i s t a l k i n g snake i s such that, at the tre e , she searches her own mind only to discover that the serpent's arguments have become her own. Satan need merely enforce h i s l i e s with the promise of godhead (11. 708-709), and Eve i s ready to persuade herself of the t r u t h of h i s "seeming" reason (1. 738). But the speech preceding the f a t a l choice i l l u s t r a t e s an independent courage of clear heroic stature. Eve r e j e c t s the p r o h i b i t i o n which, she b e l i e v e s , denies man d i v i n e knowledge and wisdom (11. 750-760), reasoning that fear must be subject to the quest for achievement: "What fear I then, rather what know to fea r / Under t h i s ignorance of Good and E v i l , / Of God or Death, of Law or Penalty?" (11. 773-775) I r o n i c a l l y , the perceived. "Cure" (1. 776) to man's innate quest for betterment i n s t i g a t e s a profound curse. And the reader can hardly overlook that i t i s Eve's misdirected v i s i o n of personal advancement, strengthened by "An eager a p p e t i t e " (IX, 740), which shatters Edenic b l i s s ; ...Meanwhile the hour of Noon drew on, and wak'd An eager appetite, r a i s ' d by the smell So savory of that F r u i t , which with d e s i r e , I n c l i n a b l e now grown to touch or t a s t e , S o l i c i t e d her longing eye .... So saying, her rash hand i n e v i l hour Forth reaching to the F r u i t , she pluck'd, she eat .... (IX, 739-743, 780-781) Eve's f a t a l rashness i s p a r a l l e l to Sin unbolting the gates of h e l l : "from her side the f a t a l Key,/ Sad instrument of a l l our woe, she took" ( I I , 871-872). Once f a l l e n , the queen of t h i s universe i s the very inversion of heroism, c l a s s i c a l or M i l t o n i c . Eve, "hight'n'd as with Wine, jocund and boon" (IX, 793), entertains the p o s s i b i l i t y of "God-head" (1. 790) but, 100 i r o n i c a l l y , begins her new l i f e with an e x t r a o r d i n a r i l y degenerate apostrophe to the tree (11. 795-807). Perhaps the most s t r i k i n g instance of Eve's ignoble stupor i s the calculated consideration towards Adam: should she share " F u l l happiness" (1. 819) with him, or conceal her experience i n order to be "more equal ... sometime/ Superior: f o r i n f e r i o r who i s f r e e ? " (11. 823-825) The quick succession of jealousy and murderous inte n t i o n s , t h i n l y disguised by an unconsciously i r o n i c profession of love, presents to the reader the extent of human l o s s : "Adam s h a l l share with me i n b l i s s or woe:/ So dear I love him, that with him a l l deaths/ I could endure, without him l i v e no l i f e " (11. 831-833). And the "bland words" (1. 855) next addressed to her husband only underscore the agony Adam must undergo i n h i s consciousness of the f a l l . But while the e f f e c t of Eve's ignoble stance might w e l l provoke moral judgment, Adam expresses only g r i e f . And, on the part of^ the reader, I suggest that Milton's p o r t r a i t of Eve's f a l l does not j u s t i f y an i n d i s c r i m i -nate denigration of her quest. In f a c t , there i s an innocent echo of Eve's experience when appetite t r i g g e r s Adam's r e a l i z a t i o n that.subconscious experience has a p a r a l l e l i n waking r e a l i t y . As he t e l l s Raphael, Each Tree Load'n with f a i r e s t F r u i t , that hung to the Eye Tempting, s t i r r ' d i n me sudden appetite To pluck and eat; whereat I wak'd, and found Before mine Eyes a l l r e a l , as the dream Had l i v e l y shadow'd .... (VIII, 306-311) Milto n thus reminds the reader that there i s a legitimate appetite, one which helps convince Adam of the truism that d i v i n e l y i n s p i r e d dreams emerge as waking r e a l i t y . And the appropriateness of a leg i t i m a t e appetite which i s f u l f i l l e d by a p e r f e c t i o n beyond human imagination i s the counterpoint to Eve's deception. The potency of Eve's egocentric heroism i s f i n a l l y 101 transformed to theocentric magnificence. It i s s t r i k i n g that Eve i s the f i r s t to embody Milton's hope in man's progression from the f a l l e n condition of f l e s h under the law to h i s redemp-t i o n under grace. While some c r i t i c s i n t e r p r e t Milton's Eye i n f u l l expect-a t i o n of a misogyny considered to be both t r a d i t i o n a l and M i l t o n i c , h i s Eve a c t u a l l y most c l e a r l y exemplifies the human r e f l e c t i o n of the theocentric heroic ethos motivated by d i v i n e love. True to her r o l e as the g l o r y of man, Eve i n i t i a t e s the r e c o n c i l i a t i o n with God which i s man's hope. Whereas Adam' contemplative strengths degenerate into s u i c i d a l ineptitude, Eve's i n t u i t i v e b r i l l i a n c e catalyses C h r i s t - l i k e heroism. Already i n t h e i r confessions to the Son, Eve d i s t i n g u i s h e s h e r s e l f as a heroine. While Adam, claiming the tyrant's plea of " s t r i c t n e c e s s i t y " (X, 131), blames Eve f o r the f a l l and implies God's s i m i l a r blameworthiness (11. 125-143), Eve admits personal g u i l t humbly and accurately: "The Serpent me beguil'd and I did eat" (1.162) At t h i s point, Adam secures h i s n i h i l i s t i c course but Eve, the heroine, begins the redemptive movement upwards. Thus, accepting the moral responsi-b i l i t y for her actions, Eve counters a misogynistic Adam with a l l the magnificence of pe r s i s t e n t love. Evoking the s a c r i f i c i a l c o n t r i t i o n of Mary Magdalene at the feet of Jesus, Eve's attempt at r e c o n c i l i a t i o n c a l l s f o r t h the redemptive process (11. 910-913). And her subsequent language r e f l e c t s the image of heroism represented by the Son. .. . On me exercise not Thy hatred ,for t h i s misery b e f a l l ' n , On me already l o s t , mee than t h y s e l f More miserable; both have sinn'd, but thou Against God only, I against God and thee, And to the place of judgment w i l l r e t u rn, There with my.cries importune Heaven, that a l l The sentence from thy head remov'd may l i g h t 102 On me, sole cause to thee of a l l t h i s woe, Mee mee only j u s t object of h i s i r e . (X, 927-936) Eve's usage of "mee" here echoes the s a c r i f i c i a l stance of the Son: "Behold mee then, mee f o r him, l i f e f o r l i f e / I o f f e r , on mee l e t thine anger f a l l ; / Account mee man" ( I I I , 236-238). Even as the Son meekly lowers himself i n the Incarnation, Eve chooses to accept subordination to Adam as the precon-d i t i o n to t h e i r union and to man's future. I t i s only "her lowly p l i g h t , / Immovable" (X, 937-938) which brings about the miracle of c o n t r i t i o n i n Adam. Eve i n s i s t s that Adam i s her "only strength and stay" (X, 921), but her,, apparent weakness, supported by an inner strength, i s magnificently superior to Adam's comic ineptitude. Eve i s the moral enchantress whose f o l l y led to f u l l r u i n , whose patient heroism again " s h a l l a l l r e s t o r e " (XII, 623). And in her l a s t speech, Eve expresses the essence of what ought to be every man's response to h i s Maker—not proposing the p r i n c i p l e of submission as a general t r u t h but i n t e r n a l i z i n g i t s importance. This l a s t speech, d e l i v e r e d upon waking from the sleep imposed by Michael, should be contrasted to her condition p r i o r to sleep when Eve expresses the deepest d i s t r e s s upon learning that she and Adam must leave Paradise for the unknown t e r r i t o r y beyond Eden: 0 unexpected stroke, worse than of Death! -Must I thus leave thee Paradise? thus leave Thee Native S o i l , these happy Walks and Shades, F i t haunt of Gods? . ... (PL, XI, 268-271) In addressing her home as "Paradise," Eve underlines the supreme importance she attaches to the phys i c a l surroundings which were the s e t t i n g f o r t h e i r domestic b l i s s . The idea that she must learn to d i s s o c i a t e h e r s e l f from the f a m i l i a r " n u p t i a l Bower" (1. 280), and "wander down/ Into a lower World, 103 to t h i s obscure/ And w i l d " (11. 282-284), appears worse than the one consequence of the F a l l — m o r t a l i t y i t s e l f . I r o n i c a l l y , Eve has voiced the very reason for the necessary e x i l e : Paradise i s indeed the " F i t haunt of Gods," and f a l l e n gods must seek out t h e i r future beyond t h e i r former state. The development from Eve's immediate despair to the execution of her c l o s i n g lines i l l u s t r a t e s the interdependence between Milton's revolutionary heroic ethos and the'movement from a ph y s i c a l Eden to "A Paradise w i t h i n ' . . . happier f a r " (XII, 587). There i s no i n d i c a t i o n that Eve at t h i s point can understand and there-f o r e consciously accept the coming e x i l e . In a mild manner, contrary to the f i e r c e r q u a l i t i e s associated with him, Michael exhorts Eve to leave off lamentation, to " p a t i e n t l y r e s i g n / What j u s t l y thou hast l o s t " (11. 287-288). The tone of Michael's words here p a r a l l e l s the i n s t r u c t i o n he l a t e r gives Adam: "Nor love thy L i f e , nor hate; but what thou l i v ' s t / L i ve w e l l , how long or short permit to Heav'n" (XI, 553-554). The F a l l gives man the continuing opportunity to exercise the true heroic patience whereby the consequences of h i s own actions and those beyond h i s c o n t r o l are accepted and endured. A lamenting Eve must learn that her "Native S o i l " i s no longer to be found i n a p a r t i c u l a r plot of land but, regardless of p a r t i c u l a r s i n time and space, at her husband's side. I t i s s i g n i f i c a n t that the poet who so highly p r i z e s man's capacity for reason should create for the ending of h i s epic a f i n a l speech where man's reason has been e f f e c t i v e l y by-passed. Eve obtains wisdom by supernatural means, by dreams sent by God; the poet dramatizes the circumstances whereby knowledge penetrates Eve's subconscious while her cogniti v e processes are i n a c t i v e . Michael causes Eve's sleep f o r the period i n which Adam i s to waken to fo r e s i g h t (XI, 367-369), l a t e r explaining the purpose of Eve's sleep: "Her a l s o I with gentle Dreams have calm'd/ Portending good, and a l l her s p i r i t s compos'd/ To meek submission" (XII, 595-597). These "gentle 104 Dreams" r e f l e c t both the character of the d i v i n e agent and, more important, t h e i r source of a comforting knowledge of the coming greater good. They are dreams sent to a l l e v i a t e Eve's d i s t r e s s and to enable her to enact the appropriate submission to God and man. It would be simpler i f Milton had confined the importance of dreams to the female sex. Eve, the l e s s e r i n t e l -l e c t , would thus receive wisdom through d i v i n e intervention, Adam only by the use of h i s reason. But Milton's Eve i s not to be e a s i l y dismissed as the " f a c i l e Consort" (PR, I, 51) Satan c a l l s her. And the mystery of Eve's r e l a t i o n to dreams i s not c l a r i f i e d by a r e c i t a t i o n of the M i l t o n i c idea that woman was not formed f o r contemplation, but.for softness and sweet a t t r a c t i v e Grace. Amplifying the above d i s t i n c t i o n between the sexes i s the poet's account of Eve r e t i r i n g upon Raphael's v i s i t s with Adam: Yet went she not, as not with such discourse Delighted, or not capable her ear Of what was high: such pleasure she reserv'd, Adam r e l a t i n g , she sole Auditress; Her Husband the Relater she p r e f e r r ' d Before the Angel, and of him to ask Chose rather: hee, she knew, would intermix G r a t e f u l d i g r e s s i o n s , and solve high dispute With conjugal Caresses, from h i s Lip Not Words alone pleas'd her. (VIII, 48-57) While Eve i s not expressly created f o r contemplation, t h i s does not negate her d e l i g h t i n and basic capacity f o r i n t e l l e c t u a l discourse. Rather, Milton underscores Eve's greater pleasure i n r a t i o n a l content found within the conjugal r e l a t i o n s h i p . The f a c t that dreams are thus not to be seen as aids to i n f e r i o r i n t e l l e c t s i s , perhaps, c l e a r e r i n Adam's case. Adam, i n h i s account of c r e a t i o n to Raphael, mingles linages of dream-vision with waking 105 r e a l i t y . Whereas Eve f i r s t experiences God as a voice intruding upon her waking consciousness, the r a t i o n a l Adam, p a r a d o x i c a l l y , i n i t i a l l y experiences God as a dream. Oppressed by. sleep, thinking he i s "passing to [his] former state/ Insensible" (VIII, 290-291), Adam's subconscious encounters an "inward a p p a r i t i o n ... of shape Divine" (11. 293-295), and his "fancy" (1. 294) i s direct e d to greater awareness of h i s own i d e n t i t y and environment. Again, upon Eve's cr e a t i o n , sleep allows Adam to perceive r e a l i t y by the open door of imagination: My earthly by h i s Heav'nly overpower'd .... By Nature as i n aid .... Mine eyes he clo s ' d , but op'n l e f t the C e l l Of Fancy my i n t e r n a l sight, by which Abstract as in a trance methought I saw, Though sleeping where I la y , and saw the shape S t i l l g l o r i o u s before whom awake I stood .... (VIII, 453, 459-464) Upon learning that the p a i r must leave Paradise, Adam undergoes a shock whereby he loses consciousness f o r the period of Eve's lamentation and Michael's responding exhortation (XI, 263-267, 293-294). This movement p a r a l -l e l s Eve's sleep, but with the i r o n i c d i s t i n c t i o n that while Eve's loss of consciousness i s due to d i v i n e i n t e r v e n t i o n , Adam's i s the n a t u r a l response to trauma. Speaking of Eve's sleep, Michael compares i t to Adam's during Eve's c r e a t i o n (XI, 367-369). Thus,' i t i s evident that, f o r M i l t o n , d i v i n e l y i n s p i r e d dreams emerge as waking r e a l i t y . As Adam recounts, "I wak'd, and found/ Before mine Eyes a l l r e a l , as the'dream/ Had l i v e l y shadow'd" (VIII, 309-311). The cumulative e f f e c t of Milton's marriage of dream imagery and waking, h i s t o r i c a l r e a l i t y i s celebrated i n t h i s f i n a l speech i n Paradise  Lost. The elevation of Eve's l i n e s echoes the praise Adam o f f e r s the both " i n f e r i o r " (VIII, 541) and mysteriously superior woman: 106 . . . A l l higher knowledge i n her presence f a l l s Degraded, Wisdom i n discourse with her Loses discount'nanc't, and l i k e f o l l y shows; Authority and Reason on her wait, As one intended f i r s t , not a f t e r made Occasionally .... (VIII, 551-556) The movement from Eve's subconscious experience - of d i v i n e interference to conscious response in her f i n a l speech p a r a l l e l s the c o l l e c t i v e human progres-sion "From shadowy Types to Truth" (XII, 303). In Eve's f o u r t e e n - l i n e speech, suggesting the sonnet form and i t s t r a d i t i o n a l usage as a love poem, Milton both alludes to and transcends form and content. Whence thou r e t u r n ' s t , and whither went'st, I know; For God i s also in sleep, and Dreams advise, Which he hath sent pro p i t i o u s , some great good Presaging, since with sorrow and heart's d i s t r e s s Wearied I f e l l asleep,: but now lead on; In mee i s no delay; with thee to go, Is to stay here; without thee here to stay, Is.to. go hence u n w i l l i n g ; thou to mee Art a l l things under Heav'n, a l l places thou, Who f o r my w i l f u l crime art banisht hence. This further consolation yet secure I carry hence; though a l l by mee i s l o s t , Such favor I unworthy am voutsaf't, By mee the Promis'd Seed s h a l l a l l r e s t o r e . (XII, 610-623) 107 The poet creates here a unity- of ideas by the r i c h i n t e r n a l rhyme, the s y n t a c t i c a l connectedness, and the r e p e t i t i o n of phrases, some of which echo c e n t r a l passages occurring e a r l i e r i n the poem. This sonnet expresses the speaker's love for another i n d i v i d u a l , but as the l i n e s cannot be divided into t r a d i t i o n a l quatrains or octave and sestet, the f i r s t f u l l stop occurring only at line, ten, so Eve's love for Adam i s fused with her love of God—she being created "for God i n him" (IV, 299). As Lee M. Johnson w r i t e s : " I t i s as d i f f i c u l t to d i v i d e Eve's sonnet as i t i s now to d i v i d e her from Adam. The m u s i c a l i t y of her utterance may be, i n f a c t , Milton's 4 4 way of i n d i c a t i n g that she i s now in harmony with heaven." In the f i r s t four and one half l i n e s , Eve indicates she knows where Adam has been and that he has apprehended r e v e l a t i o n s of d i v i n e grace. The s i m i l a r endings i n "Whence," "r e t u r n ' s t , " and "went'st" (1. 610) encourages the developing concept of a transcendence of the confines of time and space by the proper r e l a t i o n to the Maker i n whom a l l i s one. What i s important i s not Eve's absence from Adam and ignorance of the "some great good," but her oneness with Adam through the wisdom acquired i n t h e . M recent dream. The l a t e caesura before the l a s t foot, "I know," followed by a semi-colon (1. 610), stresses Eve's a s s e r t i o n that though asleep, she has not missed the essence of what Adam has learned. In l i n e s 611-613, Eve i n s t r u c t s Adam on the importance of sleep and dreams, saying that God has sent her knowledge'of the great future good. The pause a f t e r "Presaging" (1. 613) emphasizes the prophetic relevance of Eve's recent dreams. The a l l i t e r a t i o n of "p" and "g" further orchestrates Eve's.sense of an overwhelming u n i t y between Providence and her love for Adam. Her phrase "For God i s also i n sleep" (1. 611).expresses f u l l assurance i n d i v i n e c h a r i t y acting f o r the good of man. And Eve*s a m p l i f i c a t i o n that prophetic dreams came to her i n answer to d i s t r e s s 108 (11. 613-614) in d i c a t e s God's r o l e as comforter. Eve's conscious response to wisdom received i n an i n a c t i v e state underscores the a c t i v e beneficence of God celebrated i n t h i s speech. The middle section beginning l i n e 614 and ending at the f u l l stop a f t e r l i n e 619 comprises the c e n t r a l theme of the speech. Here Eve expresses the essence of what the human response to God ought to be but, rather than v o i c e general truths, a humble Eve f u l l y i n t e r n a l i z e s t r u t h , s t a t i n g only what her response i s . She begins by commanding Adam to assert hi s r o l e as head (1. 614), then celebrates through language her love f o r Adam (11. 615-619). The rhyme of "mee" with "thee," divided and joined by semi-colons, d i s t i n g u i s h e s between her own r e s p o n s i b i l i t y and Adam's, thus consciously s t r e s s i n g t h e i r bond of love. The rhyme of a n t i t h e s i s of "delay" and "stay" (11. 615) a m p l i f i e s her new awareness of what remaining i n and leaving Paradise means. In contrast to e a r l i e r d i s t r e s s , Eve now e x h i b i t s a transformed perception of domesticity: what was endearment to f a m i l i a r surroundings i s now readiness to embark on a journey where the paradise i s inner. To leave with Adam i s , paradoxically, to remain; to remain without Adam i s to leave u n w i l l i n g l y (11. 615-617). For the regenerate, enlightened Eve, whatever was i n t e g r a l to l i f e i n Paradise i s to be found in t h e i r union beyond Eden. In the M i l t o n i c fashion, the boundaries between remaining i n and leaving a p a r t i c u l a r place are confused as the transqendent meaning of the place i s associated with the o r i g i n a l meaning. As Eve repeats "here," the word no longer r e f e r s only to the h i s t o r i c a l Paradise, but to the inner paradise which r e c a l l s a l l the d e l i g h t s of the e a r l i e r Paradise now about to be destroyed. Eve, who feared the unknown world more than death, now escapes the l i m i t a t i o n s of space. 109 In l i n e s 617 and 618, Eve restates her.love f o r Adam. The subordin-a t i o n of s e l f i n the phrase "thou to me" together with the anaphora i n " a l l " strengthens the con v i c t i o n that Adam himself embodies a l l she values under Heaven. The f u l l e f f e c t of Eve's speech i s to.be seen i n how the r e p e t i t i o n of "mee" occurs throughout Paradise Lost. Satanic r h e t o r i c , employed to beguile,expresses sheer e g o c e n t r i c i t y : ... look on mee Mee who have touch'd and tasted, yet both l i v e , And l i f e more perfect have a t t a i n ' d than Fate Meant mee, by vent'ring higher than my Lot. (IX, 687-690) In c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n , Adam begins to admit h i s sense of moral g u i l t : "On mee, mee only, as the source and spring/ Of a l l corruption, a l l the blame l i g h t s due" (X, 832-833). But h i s conversion i s f a r from complete since he s t i l l addresses Eve as "Serpent" (X, 867), and i t i s only a f t e r Eve's consistent attempt at r e c o n c i l i a t i o n that he regains calm and hope. I have already discussed the p a r a l l e l between Eve's w i l l i n g n e s s to s a c r i f i c e h e r s e l f fo r Adam's sake (X, .927-936) and the heroic humility of the Son ( I I I , 236-238). Eve's r h e t o r i c a l i d e n t i f i c a t i o n with the Son expresses her heroic stature as a moral enchantress: the reader has seen her t r a n s f i x the magnif-i c e n t l y c l a s s i c a l Satan into a state bereft of strength, "Stupidly good" (IX, 465); she "seduces" a despairing, misogynistic, and s u i c i d a l Adam into the miracle of regeneration; and i n the f i n a l speech Eve consolidates her stance as the weaker v e s s e l e x h i b i t i n g greater s p i r i t u a l strength. Eve expresses an i n t u i t i v e understanding of prophecy i n her transformed domesti-c i t y , and thus f u l f i l l s the true^patience to which Michael had exhorted her. Lines 620-623 portray the new Eve as a strong, determined i n d i v i d u a l l i t e r a l l y c a r r y i n g the seed of the promise within her. The r e p e t i t i o n of "hence" (11. 619, 621) conveys the lessening importance of a ph y s i c a l Paradise 110 in view of the gl o r i o u s future. The "mee" i n l i n e s 621 and 623 expresses the f u l l joy that she should be the Mother of Mankind, a joy born out of humility. The a n t i t h e s i s of " l o s t " and "restore" (11. 621,623) emphasizes the depths of the F a l l and the greatness of Grace: she who was the cause of human dep r i v a t i o n becomes the means of s a l v a t i o n . The emphasis i s not on the worthiness of Mary, the second Eve, but on the singular worthiness of t h i s f i r s t and now regenerate Eve. In these l a s t four l i n e s Eve matches her transcendence of place with the transcendence of time. The s i g n i f i c a n c e of the whole of human h i s t o r y i s compressed to f i l l an instant; the essence of h i s t o r y gives Eve joy i n the immediate present and aids i n her transcen-dence of the bondage to time and' space. Again, the p a r t i c u l a r s are not as relevant as the u n i v e r s a l s ; the p a r t i c u l a r s i n d i c a t e the u n i v e r s a l of human movement "From shadowy Types to Truth." Central to Eve's p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the scheme of d i v i n e redemption i s he r . p a s s i v i t y . From the Homeric perspective where the epic hero i s the i n d i v i d u a l whose extraordinary prowess, u s u a l l y expressed i n v i o l e n t deeds, i s rewarded with fame, Eve must be the " f a c i l e Consort" Satan deems her. She f r e e l y subjects h e r s e l f to Adam's leadership; she exercises no c o n t r o l over the body which i s to provide C h r i s t ' s ancestry; she obtains knowledge ; through dreams, then expresses i n t u i t i v e l y what Adam apprehends d i s c u r s i v e l y But i t i s p r e c i s e l y t h i s unobtrusiveness of Eve which s u i t s her to Milton's un-Homeric, epic cause. Again rendering ambiguous t r a d i t i o n a l viewsof male s u p e r i o r i t y and female i n f e r i o r i t y , Eve's i n t u i t i v e b r i l l i a n c e i n the f i n a l speech compares with Raphael's d i s t i n c t i o n between i n t u i t i v e a n g e l i c reason and d i s c u r s i v e human reason where he suggests that i n t u i t i v e reason may be the reward f o r obedience (V, 485-595). Paradoxically, i f not i r o n i c a l l y , too, the "weaker" woman e x h i b i t s not only superior moral strength, but an i n t u i t i v e reason associated rather with the angelic than the human. Eve's " i n f e r i o r " status i s appropriate to Milton's revolutionary heroic ethos "Of I l l Patience and Heroic Martyrdom [hitherto] Unsung" (IX, 32-3) where "weakness s h a l l o'ercome Satanic strength" (PR, I, 161). It i s thus i n t r i g u i n g that several eminent c r i t i c s would regard the character Eve as an example of M i l t o n i c misogyny, conscious or otherwise. In view of the overwhelming consistency i n Eve's.portrait as the gl o r i o u s quint-. essence of c r e a t i o n , these ideas of misogyny are as v a l i d as the bad Hebrew whereby an aspirated pronunciation of the name "Heva" i s interpreted as female 4 5 serpent. Eve's submission to both Adam and d i v i n e purposes undeniably proves her s p i r i t u a l heroism. In her f i n a l speech, Eve f u l f i l l s her app e l l a -t i o n as "Heav'n's l a s t best g i f t " (V, 19), r e a l i z i n g the concept of the exalted servant where he who would be great must f i r s t be servant of a l l . In subjection to Adam, the heroine f u l f i l l s the paradox of the f i r s t being l a s t , the l a s t f i r s t . Eve's heroic c h a r i t y becomes the shadow of Heaven; her love sonnet crowns the f i n a l optimism i n the epic. Thus, regenerate man marks the c l i m a c t i c f u l f i l l m e n t of theocentric heroism. Reunited, conscious of the horrors of m o r t a l i t y , Adam and Eve a f f i r m the i n d e s t r u c t i b i l i t y of the human s p i r i t i n harmony with God. After Eve's b r i l l i a n t proclamation of f a i t h i n God and man (XII, 610-623), not another word need be spoken.. The Edenic p a i r , regenerate, and " s e l f - r e l i a n t " i n the very best sense of the word, i s able to begin the pilgrimage of moral choice i n an a f f l i c t e d world. Now the poet dramatizes the harsh j u s t i c e of the cherubim descending ... as Ev'ning Mist Ris'n from a River o'er the marish g l i d e s , And gather[ing] ground f a s t at the Laborer's heel Homeward returning. (XII, 629-632) And The brandisht Sword of God ... blaz [ing] 112 F i e r c e as a Comet; which with t o r r i d heat, And vapor as the Libyan A i r adust, Began to parch that temperate Clime . . . . (11. 633-636) evokes no less t e r r o r . The l o g i c a l i t y of t h i s d e a t h - i n - l i f e experience may w e l l lead one to conclude with T i l l y a r d that Milton ends Paradise Lost i n 46 unconscious pessimism over the f a l l e n human condition. After a l l , i s not t h i s apocalyptic v i s i o n characterized by the p e s s i m i s t i c notion that the f a l l e n world w i l l not improve; and i s not the imagined new order, at best, remote? However, the "pessimism" here i s only too conscious. Milton enter-t a i n s no delusions over the p l a u s i b l e g e n i a l i t y of a degenerate world. But i t i s wholly erroneous to regard t h i s f i n a l v i s i o n as p e s s i m i s t i c , conscious or otherwise. Moreover, i n c o n t r a d i s t i n c t i o n to the despair compatible with the t r a d i t i o n a l contemptus mundi, Milton asserts a revolutionary optimism. The f a m i l i a r g r i e f etched into the features of Adam and Eve i n Masaccio's Expulsion from Eden (c. 1425) i s devoid of the hope portrayed by Mi l t o n . Instead, Milton's heroic p a i r expresses b r i e f sorrow—"Some n a t u r a l tears they dropp'd, but wip'd them soon" (XII, 645)—a natural sorrow which i s only an i n t e r l u d e before the beginning of a glorious future: The World was a l l before them, where to choose Thir place of r e s t , and Providence t h i r guide: They hand i n hand with wand'ring steps and slow, Through Eden took t h i r s o l i t a r y way. (XII, 646-649) Juxtaposing the despair of Satan's s o l i t a r y f l i g h t from h e l l , man's " s o l i t a r y way" i s the advent of hope where Adam and Eve, "sorrowing, yet i n peace" (XI, 117), have a r r i v e d at "Holy Rest" (VI, 272). Just as the created earth becomes the feminine p r i n c i p l e , subject to her Maker, so Adam and Eve, together, r e e s t a b l i s h harmony i n d i r e c t proportion to t h e i r submission to 113 47 both God and each other. Their energetic quest for self-improvement has been channeled into the s e l f - l e s s choice for God, and, thus, they have i n some sense begun to r e a l i z e Raphael's e a r l i e r suggestion that obedient man may advance beyond h i s appointed place i n the chain of being (V, 491-503). As earth i s "but the shadow of Heav'n" (V, 575) , so human progress i s the emergence "From shadowy Types to Truth, from Flesh to S p i r i t " (XII,'303). The f r e e c r e a t i o n of God i s a t t a i n i n g sonship and the r i g h t to be c a l l e d by a new name: t h i s i s the heroic achievement. And t h i s end of the human quest, "A paradise within ... happier f a r " (1. 587), coincides with theocent-r i c heroism: the new paradise i s i n f i n i t e l y more valuable than the na t u r a l one because redeemed man, the f u l f i l l m e n t of God's de s i r e s , has the power to bestow on h i s Creator the g i f t of an inner world, and the number of such 48 worlds i s i n f i n i t e . This f i n a l v i s i o n of Adam and Eve, consciously o p t i m i s t i c , i s , apart from the image of the Son, the c l e a r e s t human manifestation of the heroic song. 114 CONCLUSION In conclusion of t h i s study, I should l i k e to consider S i r Walter Raleigh's v e r d i c t on Paradise Lost (to say nothing of i t s sequel) as "'an imposing monument to dead i d e a s . W h i l e the l i t e r a r y h i s t o r i a n may protest that there i s value i n studying such "an imposing monument," appreciation fo r i r r e l e v a n t ideas i s c l e a r l y l i m i t e d . Always, the tes t of great l i t e r a t u r e l i e s i n i t s u n i v e r s a l i t y , and anything i n f e r i o r meets the f a t e of obscurity. Is Raleigh's v e r d i c t on Mil t o n then at a l l appropriate? Indeed, the a n t i -heroic tenets of the twentieth-century i n t e l l e c t u a l climate do contribute to the reading of Milton's two works as magnificent memorials, magnificent but commemorating only the obsolete. Modern man has exchanged the t r a d i t i o n a l Judeo-Christian world-view of human s i g n i f i c a n c e i n an ordered cosmos f o r one of e x i s t e n t i a l i s t despair: i n the Pla t o n i c sense, the modern loss of a u n i v e r s a l , an absolute standard of good, r e s u l t s i n the l o s s of meaning of the p a r t i c u l a r — m a n i s alone i n a meaningless, absurd universe. Understand-ably then, skepticism, i f not i n d i f f e r e n c e , i s one twentieth-century response to an older heroic sentiment. But I suggest that t h i s i s not the best response to the question Raleigh's v e r d i c t r a i s e s . In f a c t , three centuries of c r i t i -c a l appreciation have hardly given up Milton to obscurity. Moreover, as I have suggested i n t h i s study,'Milton's c e l e b r a t i o n of the sacredness of the human s p i r i t a f f i r m s a hope i n the i d e a l which, even i n t h i s century, i s nothing l e s s than a l i v i n g u n i v e r s a l . John Milton's unique d e l i n e a t i o n of the epic s p i r i t i s a v i t a l c o n t r i b u t i o n to Western thought—not so much a turning point i n a continuum f i r s t i n s p i r e d by Homer as an achievement of the human s p i r i t set apart from that which comes before and a f t e r . His i s a view d i s t i n c t i v e from and therefore e s s e n t i a l to understanding the ant i - h e r o i c tenets of the twentieth century. When Milton c a l l s upon the heavenly muse whom he i s "Following, above th' Olympian H i l l .... Above the f l i g h t of Pegasean wing" (PL, VII, 3-4), he asserts f a i t h i n a dream of the i d e a l 115 surpassing the v i s i o n of the Olympian muses. He addresses Urania; "So f a i l not thou ... For thou art Heav'nly, shee an empty dream" (11. 38-39). And the poet's i n s p i r a t i o n does not f a i l : he creates for h i s " f i t audience ... though few" (1. 31) a legacy of the imagination, a legacy of f a i t h i n the unlimited p o t e n t i a l of man to manifest s p i r i t u a l greatness. Thus, the heroic song i n Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained i s a l i v i n g anthem e x t o l l i n g the i n c o r r u p t i b i l i t y of the human s p i r i t i n harmony with God. The tension between seventeenth-century E n g l i s h Puritanism and Renaissance humanism has been transcended i n a c e l e b r a t i o n of theocentric heroism. The drama i n these two works i s cradled i n the heroic ethos where true a c t i o n i s moral a c t i o n , where heroic achievement i s the miracle of f r a i l man's submission to h i s Maker. The f u t i l i t y of s e l f - s u f f i c i e n t heroism i s evident i n Satan; "strength from Truth d i v i d e d " (PL, VI, 381) i s v a i n . It i s rather i n the Son's "Humiliation and strong Sufferance" (PR, I, 160) that man f i n d s the key to the f i n a l cosmic v i c t o r y of l i f e over death. As Charles Williams argues, man must f u l f i l l "the law of self-abnegation i n 2 love." Or as Northrop Frye says, The f r e e i n t e l l i g e n c e must detach i t s e l f from t h i s world and uni t e i t s e l f to the t o t a l i t y of freedom and i n t e l l i g e n c e which i s God i n man, s h i f t i t s centre of g r a v i t y from the s e l f to the presence of God i n the s e l f . Then i t w i l l f i n d the i d e n t i t y with nature i t appeared to r e j e c t : i t w i l l p a r t i c i p a t e i n the 3 Creator's view of :a world he made and found good. And M i l t o n does not intend to j u s t i f y the ways of God to mankind c o l l e c t i v e l y . Rather, he o f f e r s the burden of moral choice to the i n d i v i d u a l . I t i s only the i n d i v i d u a l who may s t r i v e to r e a l i z e the s p i r i t u a l i t y which i s at once "more humane, more heavenly" (PR, I, 221). 4 F i n a l l y , the hero of Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained i s the reader. From the s t a r t , the reader has been engaged i n the d i f f i c u l t process of moral 116 choice presented by Satanic strength, and, upon seeing the f u t i l i t y of c l a s s i c a l heroism i n a moral universe, encounters the image of genuine heroism i n the Son's weakness. With the convergence of these moral options upon Adam and Eve, he p a r t i c i p a t e s f u l l y i n the heroic question posed to man. It i s not enough for him to express Sehnsucht f o r Edenic o r i g i n s ; the hero must be able to transform Romantic longing into a conscldus hope that the dream of s p i r i t u a l l i b e r t y i s indeed a human p o t e n t i a l . And the reader himself thus p a r t i c i p a t e s i n the revolutionary optimism whereby man's destiny i s defined as a s p i r i t u a l Eden, "A paradise within ... happier f a r " (XII, 587). \ 117 NOTES Abstract John Milton, John Mi l t o n : Complete Poems and Major Prose, ed. M e r r i t t Y. Hughes, (Indianapolis: Odyssey Press, 1957). A l l subsequent references to. Milton are to t h i s e d i t i o n . Chapter One *See C.S. Lewis, A Preface to "Paradise Lost," (London: Oxford Univ. Press, 1942; r p t . 1974) . 2 See A.J.A. Waldock, "Paradise Lost" and I t s C r i t i c s , (Cambridge: Univ. Press, 1947) 3 S i r Walter Raleigh, as quoted by G. Rostrevor Hamilton, Hero or Fool?  A Study of Milton's Satan, (London: George A l l e n & Unwin, Ltd., 1944), p. 7. ^John M. Steadman, Milton's Epic Characters: Image and I d o l , (Chapel H i l l : Univ. of North Carolina Press, 1968), p. 235. ''steadman, Milton's Epic Characters, pp. 236-240. ^A.S.P. Woodhouse, The Heavenly Muse: A Preface to M i l t o n , ed. Hugh MacCallum, (Toronto: Univ. of Toronto Press, 1972), p. 213. ^Woodhouse, p. 121. Stanley Eugene F i s h , Surprised by S i n : The Reader i n "Paradise Lost," (Berkley: Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1971), pp. 162-168. 9 - .-Waldoc.k,. "Satan and the/Technique of Degradation," M i l t o n : A C o l l e c t i o n  of. C r i t i c a l Essays, ed. Louis L. Martz, (Englewood C l i f f s , N.J..: Pr e n t i c e -H a l l , Inc., 1966), p. 95. ." "^Steadman, Milton's Epic Characters, pp. 281-294. **Steadman,.Milton and the Renaissance Hero, (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1967), pp. xv, 1. 1 2 F i s h , p. 193. 13 Jon S. Lawry, The Shadow of Heaven: Matter and Stance i n Milton's  Poetry, (Ithaca, New York: C o r n e l l Univ. Press, 1968), pp. 125,133. *^ M.M. Mahood, Poetry and Humanism, (London: Jonathon Cape, 1950), p. 187. : " v 15 .. ;. Q 7 Lewis,, p. 97 . ^Hamilton, p. 40. ~ • "^Northrop Frye, The Return, of Eden: Five Essays on Milton's Epics, (Toronto: Univ. Toronto Press, 1965), pp. 22-23. 18 ' D..C. A l l e n , The Harmonious V i s i o n : Studies in Milton's Poetr.y., (Baltimore: John Hopkins Press, 1954), p. 111. 118 1 9 A l l e n , The Harmonious V i s i o n , pp. 111-112. 20 Frye, The Return of Eden, p. 21. 2 1 J o h n Mi l t o n , as quoted by Frye, The Return of Eden, p. 21. 2 2Lawry, p. 127. 23 Milton, Areopagitica, p. 728. 2 4 M i l t o n , Areopagitica, p. 728. Chapter Two 1 F r y e , The Return of Eden, pp. 23-24. . 2 Charles Williams, "An Introduction to Milton's Poems," Milton C r i t i c i s m  Selections from Four Centuries, ed. James Thorpe, (New York: Octagon Books, Inc., 1966), p. 262. 3 Williams, p. 258. 4 Williams, p. 260. ^Hughes, "The Chri s t of Paradise Regained and the Renaissance Heroic T r a d i t i o n , " SP, 35 (1938), 276. E^.M.W. T i l l y a r d , The E n g l i s h Epic and i t s Background, (New York: Oxford Univ. Press, 1966), p. 447. 7W.W. Robson, "The Better F o r t i t u d e , " The L i v i n g Milton,.ed. Frank Kermode, (London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1960), p. 135. 8 Steadman, M i l t o n and the Renaissance Hero, p. x v i . 9 See Mahood, p. 230. 1 0Hughes, "The C h r i s t of Paradise Regained," 255, 257. ^ H l a h o o d , p. 235. 12 See Jan de Bruyn's discussion on the r e l a t i o n between dramatic s t r u c -ture and the innerness of temptation i n the unpublished manuscript, "Innerness i n Paradise Regained: A Comment on Structure as an Indicator of the Dramatic Evolution of Temptation." 13 See de Bruyn, p. 4. ^ d e Bruyn, p. 6. 1 5 F r y e , The Return of Eden, p. 23. 1 6 F r y e , "The Typology of Paradise, Regained," MP, 53 (1956), 236. 119 "^Lawry, p. 343. ^Lawry, p. 343 . 19 Lawry, p. 345. 20 Frye, The Return of Eden, p. 143, Chapter Three ^John Dryden, as quoted by Mahood, p. 207. , 2 Cf. Steadman, Milt o n and the Renaissance Hero, p. x v i . 3 C f . Mahood, pp. 209-210. 4 -Mahood, p. 195. Jacques M a r i t a i n , as quoted by Mahood, p. 12. ^Jacques M a r i t a i n , as quoted by Mahood, pp. 18-19. 7Mahood, p. 2 03. 8 Mahood, p. 205. 9 Mahood, p. 211. ' . 1 0 W i l l i a m H a l l e r , " ' H a i l Wedded Love,'" ELH, 13 (1946), 97. 1 1 D a v i s Philoon Harding, The Club of Hercules: Studies i n the C l a s s i c a l  Background of "Paradise Lost," (Urbana: Univ. of I l l i n o i s Press, 1962), pp. 78-81. 1 2Mahood, p. 182. 13 Harding^ p. 71. 14 Milto n , Areopagitica, p. 728. *^Mahood, p. 221. <^See Hughes, ed. , John M i l t o n , p. 177n. ^Mahood, pp. 221-222. 18 CM. Bowra, From V i r g i l to M i l t o n , (London: MacMillan & Co., Ltd., 1945), p. 208. 19 it T i l l y a r d , "Paradise Lost: Conscious and Unconscious Meanings, M i l t o n C r i t i c i s m , ed. Thorpe, p. 187. 2 0 S e e . J.H. Summers, "The F i n a l V i s i o n , " i n Mil t o n, ed. Martz, p. 186. 120 21 Summers, p. 186. 22 Dudley R. Hutcherson, "Milton's Eve and Other Eves," U n i v e r s i t y  of M i s s i s s i p p i Studies i n English, 1 (1960), 12. 23 ' Hutcherson, 12-13. 24 Hutcherson, 13-14. 2 5 F i s h , pp. 92-93. 2 6 F i s h , p. 92. Roy C. Flannagan, "Eve," A Milton Encyclopedia, 3, (London: Assoc. Univ. Presses Inc., 1978), 83. 2^Flannagan, 83. 29 Dr. Johnson, as quoted by Flannagan, 84. 3 0James H o l l y Hanford, as quoted by Dorothy D. M i l l e r , "Eve," JEGP, 61 (1962), 542. 31 B a s i l W i l l e y , The Seventeenth Century Background: Studies i n the  Thought of the Age i n Relation to Poetry and R e l i g i o n , (London: Chatto & Windus, 1953), p. 263. 32 Harding, pp. 73-75. > 3 3 A l l e n , "Milton's Eve and the Evening Angels," MLN, 75 (1960), 108-109, "^Harding, p. 75. 35 Frye, The Return of Eden, p. 77. 3^Mahood, p. 223. Arnold S t e i n , The Art of Presence: The Poet and "Paradise Lost," (Berkeley: Univ. of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1977), p. 98. 38 Ste i n , p. 98. 3 9 S t e i n , pp. 98-99. ^°John S. Diekhoff, "Eve, the D e v i l , and Areopagitica," MLQ, 5 (1944), 434. ^Steadman, "Eve's Dream and the Conventions of Wit c h c r a f t , " JHI, 26 (1965), 567. Steadman, "Eve's Dream," 573. See Frye, The Return of Eden, pp. 77-78. 121 44 Lee M. Johnson, "Milton's Blank Verse Sonnets," Milton Studies, 5 (1973), 144. 45 A l l e n , "Milton and the Name of Eve," 74 (1959), 681-683. 46 See T i l l y a r d , "Conscious and Unconscious Meanings," Milton C r i t i c i s m , ed. Thorpe, pp. 206-210. 47 Cf. Mahood, p. 202. 48 See Mahood, pp. 304-305. Conclusion 1 S i r Walter Raleigh, as quoted by James H o l l y Hanford, "Milton and the Return to Humanism-"Milton C r i t i c i s m , ed.Thorpe, p. 160. 2 ' Williams, p. 256. 3 Frye, The Return of Eden, p. 31. 4 C f . 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