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John Milton, English History, and Paradise Lost. James I dates: 1603 – Death of Elizabeth1603 – Death of Elizabeth And ascension of James I (James VI.

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Presentation on theme: "John Milton, English History, and Paradise Lost. James I dates: 1603 – Death of Elizabeth1603 – Death of Elizabeth And ascension of James I (James VI."— Presentation transcript:

1 John Milton, English History, and Paradise Lost

2 James I dates: 1603 – Death of Elizabeth1603 – Death of Elizabeth And ascension of James I (James VI of Scotland), son of Mary Queen of Scots, father of Henry (who died before his father) and Charles IAnd ascension of James I (James VI of Scotland), son of Mary Queen of Scots, father of Henry (who died before his father) and Charles I 1605 – Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament (Guy Fawkes) led to reprisals against Catholics1605 – Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament (Guy Fawkes) led to reprisals against Catholics 1611 – King James Bible1611 – King James Bible Shakespeare part of King’s Men (patronized by James I), retires by 1613, dies in 1616Shakespeare part of King’s Men (patronized by James I), retires by 1613, dies in 1616

3 Jacobean Drama “The plays of the Jacobean period become even more complex, even more passionate and violent than the plays of the Elizabethan age, as they go more deeply into problems of corruption and human weakness. The masterpieces of Jacobean tragedy include the plays of John Webster, especially The White Devil (published in 1612), and The Duchess of Malfi, written about the same time.” [From The Penguin Guide to English Literature, London, ] “The plays of the Jacobean period become even more complex, even more passionate and violent than the plays of the Elizabethan age, as they go more deeply into problems of corruption and human weakness. The masterpieces of Jacobean tragedy include the plays of John Webster, especially The White Devil (published in 1612), and The Duchess of Malfi, written about the same time.” [From The Penguin Guide to English Literature, London, ]

4 1620 The "Pilgrims," Puritan Separatists who had fled to the Netherlands, sail to America and found colony at Plymouth, Massachusetts 1620 The "Pilgrims," Puritan Separatists who had fled to the Netherlands, sail to America and found colony at Plymouth, Massachusetts 1625 Charles I becomes king 1625 Charles I becomes king 1628 Oliver Cromwell becomes Member of Parliament 1628 Oliver Cromwell becomes Member of Parliament 1633 William Laud appointed Archbishop of Canterbury; "Great Migration" of Puritans to New England 1633 William Laud appointed Archbishop of Canterbury; "Great Migration" of Puritans to New England 1641 The House of Commons presents Charles I with Grand Remonstrance 1641 The House of Commons presents Charles I with Grand Remonstrance 1642 English Civil War begins; most Puritans side with Parliament against King Charles I 1642 English Civil War begins; most Puritans side with Parliament against King Charles I

5 The “Long Parliament” 1643 Parliament calls assembly of Puritan leaders, who produce Westminster Confession of Faith, Larger and Shorter Catechisms, and Directory of Worship 1643 Parliament calls assembly of Puritan leaders, who produce Westminster Confession of Faith, Larger and Shorter Catechisms, and Directory of Worship 1645 Archbishop William Laud executed by Puritan-run Parliament 1645 Archbishop William Laud executed by Puritan-run Parliament 1645 Charles I defeated by Oliver Cromwell's Parliamentary army 1645 Charles I defeated by Oliver Cromwell's Parliamentary army 1649 Charles I is beheaded by Parliament; Commonwealth begins under Cromwell 1649 Charles I is beheaded by Parliament; Commonwealth begins under Cromwell 1649 Cromwell massacres 3,500 Irishmen at Drogheda 1649 Cromwell massacres 3,500 Irishmen at Drogheda 1653 Cromwell becomes England's "Lord Protector," dissolves Parliament, and advances Puritan objectives 1653 Cromwell becomes England's "Lord Protector," dissolves Parliament, and advances Puritan objectives 1658 Death of Oliver Cromwell on September Death of Oliver Cromwell on September Parliament restores the monarchy; Charles II becomes king 1660 Parliament restores the monarchy; Charles II becomes king All above from Christianity Today: Christian History, Web.All above from Christianity Today: Christian History, Web.

6 Archbishop Laud Archbishop Laud was attempting progressive reforms in the Anglican church (church of England), which was the establishmentArchbishop Laud was attempting progressive reforms in the Anglican church (church of England), which was the establishment Laud would have succeeded in keeping Church and monarchy in order except that Charles I was exceptionally incompetent. He believed that the Monarch held absolute power.Laud would have succeeded in keeping Church and monarchy in order except that Charles I was exceptionally incompetent. He believed that the Monarch held absolute power.

7 Difference between Puritans & Anglicans (Church of England) Anglicans used stained glass windows, statues, music, and incense as aids to worshipAnglicans used stained glass windows, statues, music, and incense as aids to worship Puritans did not – hundreds and hundred of dissenters from the Church of England (Anglicans) were imprisoned for their beliefsPuritans did not – hundreds and hundred of dissenters from the Church of England (Anglicans) were imprisoned for their beliefs Puritans were against usury (loaning money at interest), which was seen as related to the devilPuritans were against usury (loaning money at interest), which was seen as related to the devil

8 What was Milton really like? He agreed with ideas of Archbishop LaudHe agreed with ideas of Archbishop Laud John Milton was an Iconoclast who said that Monarchy was “a civil kinde of Idolatry” but this idea about the King did not make him a PuritanJohn Milton was an Iconoclast who said that Monarchy was “a civil kinde of Idolatry” but this idea about the King did not make him a Puritan He rejected predestination (important to Puritans)He rejected predestination (important to Puritans) He advocated self-esteem and a just pride in personal virtueHe advocated self-esteem and a just pride in personal virtue His God was rational, and sometimes even identified with Reason itselfHis God was rational, and sometimes even identified with Reason itself He often invoked the Muses as inspirationHe often invoked the Muses as inspiration He treated polytheistic mythology with the same respect as Christianity and often seems to prefer Orpheus to JesusHe treated polytheistic mythology with the same respect as Christianity and often seems to prefer Orpheus to Jesus All from David Hawkes’ “Signs of Grace” TLS Sept Print.All from David Hawkes’ “Signs of Grace” TLS Sept Print.

9 Milton’s Private Life Age of 18 he declared himself a lifelong devotee of CupidAge of 18 he declared himself a lifelong devotee of Cupid Later declared that “exposure to temptation was necessary” in order to become virtuousLater declared that “exposure to temptation was necessary” in order to become virtuous He was temporarily expelled from university and went to the theater!!He was temporarily expelled from university and went to the theater!! He “conducted a passionately intimate friendship with a male schoolfriend”He “conducted a passionately intimate friendship with a male schoolfriend” In Italy, enjoyed homosocial life. One enemy accused him of getting money there by “selling his buttocks for a few pence”In Italy, enjoyed homosocial life. One enemy accused him of getting money there by “selling his buttocks for a few pence” All from David Hawkes’ “Signs of Grace” TLS Sept Print.All from David Hawkes’ “Signs of Grace” TLS Sept Print.

10 What Milton’s Friends said Sense of humorSense of humor Loved to singLoved to sing Cared about his appearance – that he be fashionable Collars were frilly lace and his hair wavy and long Wore a sword

11 Love and Marriage Fretted about sexual frustration Fathered 5 children by 2 of his three wives While separated from first wife, proposed bigamous marriage to another lady Believed in polygamy and was accused of founding a sect of sexual libertines: “The Divorcers” One woman claimed he rotated his wives at four every two weeks All from David Hawkes’ “Signs of Grace” TLS Sept Print.

12 Paradise Lost: Intentional Epic Milton intentionally wrote in the centuries-old epic style: The Reason of Church Government: Milton declares his desire to write a great work that will serve to glorify England as earlier poets had glorified their native lands and cultures: "what the greatest and choycest wits of Athens, Rome, or modern Italy, and those Hebrews of old did for their country, I in my proportion with this over and above of being a Christian, might doe for mine" ( RCG 2).Milton intentionally wrote in the centuries-old epic style: The Reason of Church Government: Milton declares his desire to write a great work that will serve to glorify England as earlier poets had glorified their native lands and cultures: "what the greatest and choycest wits of Athens, Rome, or modern Italy, and those Hebrews of old did for their country, I in my proportion with this over and above of being a Christian, might doe for mine" ( RCG 2). RCG 2 RCG 2 He declares his intention to write in English rather than another language such as Latin, and then ponders what genre to adopt: epic, tragic, or lyric ( RCG 2). He declares his intention to write in English rather than another language such as Latin, and then ponders what genre to adopt: epic, tragic, or lyric ( RCG 2). RCG 2 RCG 2

13 Characteristics of Epic In deciding to write an epic, Milton consciously places himself in the tradition of prior epic writers, such as the ancients Homer and Virgil, and the Medieval and Renaissance poets Dante... and Spenser.In deciding to write an epic, Milton consciously places himself in the tradition of prior epic writers, such as the ancients Homer and Virgil, and the Medieval and Renaissance poets Dante... and Spenser. By doing this, he raises specific sets of expectations both for himself and for readers.By doing this, he raises specific sets of expectations both for himself and for readers. it begins in medias res ; it begins in medias res ; it concerns heavenly and earthly beings and the interactions between them;it concerns heavenly and earthly beings and the interactions between them; it uses conventions such as epic similes, catalogues of people and places, it uses conventions such as epic similes, catalogues of people and places, and invocations to a muse;and invocations to a muse; and it contains themes common to epics, such as war, nationalism, empire, and stories of origin.and it contains themes common to epics, such as war, nationalism, empire, and stories of origin.

14 Who is the epic hero? What is Milton doing? Is Satan the hero?What is Milton doing? Is Satan the hero? As Lewalski writes, "by measuring Satan against the heroic standards, we become conscious of the inadequacy and fragility of all the heroic virtues celebrated in literature, of the susceptibility of them all to demonic perversion" (78).As Lewalski writes, "by measuring Satan against the heroic standards, we become conscious of the inadequacy and fragility of all the heroic virtues celebrated in literature, of the susceptibility of them all to demonic perversion" (78).

15 Other Genres in PL there are elements of lyric poetry, including the pastoral mode, as in the descriptions of Paradise, the conversations between the unfallen Adam and Eve, and their joyful prayers to God in the Garden ( PL ).there are elements of lyric poetry, including the pastoral mode, as in the descriptions of Paradise, the conversations between the unfallen Adam and Eve, and their joyful prayers to God in the Garden ( PL ). PL PL There is an aubade ( PL ),There is an aubade ( PL ), PL PL There are also elements of tragedy, as in Book 9 when Milton, preparing his readers for the fall, writes, "I now must change / Those Notes to Tragic," and continues throughout the book to employ tragic conventions, as when he apostrophizes Eve ( PL ) and describes the earth's response to the eating of the fruit ( PL and ).There are also elements of tragedy, as in Book 9 when Milton, preparing his readers for the fall, writes, "I now must change / Those Notes to Tragic," and continues throughout the book to employ tragic conventions, as when he apostrophizes Eve ( PL ) and describes the earth's response to the eating of the fruit ( PL and ). PL PL PL PL Throughout the poem Milton makes use of soliloquy, another tragic convention.Throughout the poem Milton makes use of soliloquy, another tragic convention.

16 Satan Exalted sat "High on a throne of royal state, which far Outshone the wealth of Ormus and of Ind, Or where the gorgeous East with richest hand Showers on her kings barbaric pearl and gold, Satan exalted sat, by merit rais'd To that bad eminence." John Milton Paradise Lost "High on a throne of royal state, which far Outshone the wealth of Ormus and of Ind, Or where the gorgeous East with richest hand Showers on her kings barbaric pearl and gold, Satan exalted sat, by merit rais'd To that bad eminence." John Milton Paradise Lost

17 Angels gone wrong

18 Eve

19 Satan rouses Beelzebub (Dore)

20 Fallen Angels Roused

21 Pandemonium

22 Satan Hurled from Heaven

23 Temptation

24 Creation

25 Expulsion from Paradise

26 Another Expulsion


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