Milton, Paradise Lost

Milton's Iliad is a re-interpretation of Genesis. Adam and Eve live in the Garden of Eden, and Milton's command of the English language has no rival. Not even Shakespeare could match his level of richness.

They have lustless sex. Satan temps her with the tree of knowledge, and then they have lustful sex, which is sinful.

This book was challenging for me. I didn't find it all that pleasurable. It was hard to penetrate the text because it was so wordy. I admire Milton deeply for his command of the English language. I certainly feel that he is the master of the English language, maybe over Shakespeare, but I don't think I have the stomach yet to love this book. This book made me wish someone could explain one stanza of one chapter to me very slowly so I could absorb it. Much less approachable than even Dante, which was loaded with reference.

Was Milton a misogynist? His depiction of Eve was certainly not a feminist retelling of the poem. He married a teenager that wanted nothing to do with him. Woolf said that Milton was a bogey not only blocking the sky but the world. Mostly, I feel awful for Milton; I can't imagine he was well-liked in his life.