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Unit II – Jacobean Age (1600-1798)

S. No Title P. No
01 John Donne’s Canonisation

The Ecstasy



02 John Milton’s Paradise Lost, Book-IX

Samson Agonistes



03 Alexander Pope’s The Rape of the Lock 57
04 Thomas Gray’s Poems (Peacock’s English Verse – Vol-III) 80
05 William Collins’s Poems (Peacock’s English Verse – Vol-III) 95
06 William Blake’s Poems (Peacock’s English Verse – Vol-III) 103
07 George Herbert’s Affliction 

The Pulley



08 Andrew Marvell’s To His Coy Mistress 124
09 Samuel  Johnson’s Life of Milton 132
10 John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress 144
11 Henry Fielding’s Tom Jones 192
12 John Dryden’s All for Love 261
13 R.B.Sheridan’s The School for Scandal 272
14 William Congreve’s The Way of the World 298
15 Oliver Goldsmith’s She Stoops to Conquer 318



  1. John Milton’s Paradise Lost – Book IX

John Milton

Early Life:

  • John Milton was born in Bread Street, London on 9 December 1608, the son of composer John Milton and his wife Sarah Jeffrey.
  • He was poet, prose polemicist, civil servant.
  • He knew the languages English, Latin, French, German, Greek, Hebrew, Italian, Spanish, Aramaic and Syriac.
  • He attended St Paul’s School in London.
  • He studied at Christ’s College, Cambridge graduating in 1629 with a Bachelor of Arts degree, and 1632 with a Master of Arts.
  • He was called as“Lady of the Light”,“Lady of Christs” and “Milton the Divorcer”.
  • He was a Puritan who believed in the authority of the Bible, and opposed religious institutions like the Church of England


  • John Milton was appointed as Latin Secretary to Oliver Cromwell in 1649.
  • He married three times and his first wife Mary Powell (1625–1652) had four children.
  • On 12 November 1656, he was married to Katherine Woodcock.
  • He married for a third time on 24 February 1662 to Elizabeth Minshull.
  • Nephews Edward and John Phillips (sons of Milton’s sister Anne) were educated by Milton and became writers themselves.
  • John acted as a secretary, and Edward was Milton’s first biographer.
  • In 1638, John Milton went to Europe, where he probably met the astronomer Galileo, who was under house arrest at the time.
  • He wrote pamphlets on radical topics like freedom of the press, supported Oliver Cromwell in the English Civil War, and was probably present at the beheading of Charles I.
  • He wrote official publications for Cromwell’s government.
  • When Charles II, son of the executed Charles I, regained the throne in 1660, Milton was in danger for supporting the overthrow of the monarchy.
  • Milton was harassed and imprisoned and several of his books were burned.
  • However, he was included in a general pardon.


Poetry and drama

  • L’Allegro (1631)
  • Il Penseroso (1631)
  • Comus (1634) (a masque)
  • Lycidas (1638)
  • It is a pastoral elegy on Edward King who was dead in Irish Sea.
  • Poems of Mr John Milton, Both English and Latin (1645)
  • When I Consider How My Light is Spent (1652)
  • It is commonly referred to as “On his blindness”.
  • Paradise Lost (1667)
  • Paradise Lost, the greatest epic published in 1667, is inspired by the Bible story of the Creation, the fall of Adam and Eve, the rebellion of Satan against God, and Satan being cast out from heaven.
  • A revised, 12-volume version of Paradise Lost was published in 1674.
  • Paradise Regained (1671)
  • Paradise Regained treats the rejection by Jesus of Satan’s temptations.
  • Samson Agonistes (1671)
  • Samson Agonistes deals with the theme of temptation, dramatizing how the Hebrew strong man yielded to passion and seeming self-interest.


  • Of Reformation (1641)
  • Doctrine and Discipline of Divorce (1643)
  • Of Education (1644)
  • In 1644 Milton’s Of Education dealt with another kind of domestic freedom
  • Areopagitica (1644)
  • It is influential and impassioned defenses of free speech and freedom of the press.
  • The Tenure of Kings and Magistrates (1649)
  • Defensio pro Populo Anglicano [First Defence] (1651)
  • Defensio Secunda [Second Defence] (1654)
  • A Treatise of Civil Power (1659)
  • History of Britain (1670)
  • Of True Religion (1673)
  • In 1673 Milton reentered public controversy (open to dispute) with Of True Religion, a brief defense of Protestantism.


  • In his prose works he advocated the abolition of the Church of England.
  • Writing in English, Latin, Greek, and Italian, he achieved international renown within his lifetime.
  • While at college, he wrote a number of his well-known shorter English poems, among them “On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity”, his “Epitaph on the admirable Dramatick Poet, W. Shakespeare” (his first poem to appear in print), L’Allegro, and Il Penseroso.
  • ‘Comus’ argues for the virtuousness of temperance and chastity.
  • Milton published a series of pamphlets over the next three years arguing for the legality and morality of divorce.
  • On 24 February 1652, Milton published his Latin defence of the English people Defensio pro Populo Anglicano, also known as the First Defence.
  • In 1654, Milton completed the second defence of the English nation Defensio secunda in response to an anonymous Royalist tract “Regii sanguinis clamor”, a work that made many personal attacks on Milton.
  • The second defence praised Oliver Cromwell, now Lord Protector, while exhorting him to remain true to the principles of the Revolution.
  • By 1654, Milton had become totally blind; His blindness forced him to dictate his verse and prose to amanuenses (helpers), one of whom was poet Andrew Marvell.
  • One of his best-known sonnets is presumed to date from this period, ‘When I Consider How My Light is Spent’, titled by a later editor “On His Blindness”.
  • His first published poem was ‘On Shakespeare’ (1630), anonymously included in the Second Folio edition of William Shakespeare.
  • Milton collected his work in 1645 Poems in the midst of the excitement attending the possibility of establishing a new English government.
  • Milton followed up the publication Paradise Lost with its sequel Paradise Regained, which was published alongside the tragedy Samson Agonistes in 1671.
  • Just before his death in 1674, Milton supervised a second edition of Paradise Lost, accompanied by an explanation of “why the poem rhymes not”, and prefatory verses by Andrew Marvell.



  • Samuel Johnson praised Paradise Lost as “a poem which…with respect to design may claim the first place, and with respect to performance, the second, among the productions of the human mind”.
  • William Wordsworth began his sonnet “London, 1802” with “Milton! thou should’st be living at this hour” and modelled The Prelude, his own blank verse epic, on Paradise Lost.
  • John Keats found exclaimed that “Miltonic verse cannot be written but in an artful or rather artist’s humour.”
  • “Milton wrote English like a dead language” – S. Eliot.
  • “Milton with his excessive Latinization has destroyed the English language” – T.S.Eliot.
  • “Milton was the poetical son of Spenser” –
  • “This man (Milton) cuts us all out and the ancient too” – Dryden.
  • “Milton was God gifted organ voice of England” – Tennyson.
  • “Miltonic sublimity is called as Grand Style” –



  • Milton died of kidney failure on 8 November 1674 and was buried in the church of St Giles Cripplegate, Fore Street, London.
  • There is a monument dedicated to him in Poet’s Corner in Westminster Abbey in London.


Paradise Lost (Book IX)

  • Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton.
  • The first version, published in 1667, consisted of ten books with over ten thousand lines of verse.
  • A second edition followed in 1674, arranged into twelve books (in the manner of Virgil’s Aeneid) with minor revisions throughout and a note on the versification.
  • The poem concerns the Biblical story of the Fall of Man, the temptation of Adam and Eve by the fallen angel Satan and their expulsion from the Garden of Eden.
  • Milton’s purpose, stated in Book I, is to “justify the ways of God to men”.


Character List:

  • Satan:
  • Satan is called Lucifer in heaven before his disobedience.
  • He reigns as king in hell.
  • He continues an eternal battle with God and goodness for the souls of human beings.
  • God:
  • God is the Absolute, ruler of heaven, creator of earth and all of creation.
  • When Satan falls and brings many of heaven’s population with him, he decides to create a new creature, human, and to create for him a beautiful universe in the hopes that someday humans will join him in heaven.
  • Adam:
  • Adam is the first created man, father of all mankind.
  • He is created a just and ordered creature, living in joy, praising God.
  • Lonely, Adam will ask for a companion and will thereafter feel deep and uncontrollable, though ordered, love for her, named Eve.
  • This love will ultimately get Adam in trouble, as he decides to disobey God rather than leave her.
  • Adam has free will and, by the end of the poem, also has the knowledge of good and evil.
  • Eve:
  • Eve is the first created woman, mother of all mankind.
  • She is rather a fickle and vain woman, easily flattered by Adam and Satan.
  • Her weakness becomes her downfall, as her vanity drives her to disobey God.
  • She loves Adam as well, though the implication is that she loves herself much more.
  • Raphael:
  • Raphael is gentle archangel sent to befriend and warn Adam of the dangers in the Garden.
  • Raphael is traditionally seen as a friendly and sociable angel and, in fact, sits down to eat and gab with Adam for most of an afternoon. Raphael is a gentle guide and appears as a luminous, soft being.
  • Michael:
  • Michal is general in God’s army.
  • In contrast to Raphael, Michael is a firm, military type of angel.
  • He is more of an instructor and a punisher than he is a friend and a guide.
  • He and Gabriel are sent to battle Satan’s forces in the heavenly war, and he is sent to evict Adam and Eve from Paradise.
  • Gabriel:
  • Gabriel is another archangel who is a general in God’s army.
  • He, too, was sent to lead God’s forces into battle against Satan and it is he who, with a squadron of angel soldiers, finds Satan in the Garden of Eden the first time.
  • Beelzebub:
  • Beelzebub is the Lord of the Flies, one of the Fallen Angels and Satan’s second in command.
  • Beelzebub is the name of one of the Syrian gods mentioned in the Hebrew Bible.
  • He is the first with whom Satan confers when contemplating rebellion and he is the first Satan sees when they are in hell.
  • Beelzebub relies totally on Satan for what he thinks and does. Later, Satan uses Beelzebub as a plant to get hell’s council of fallen angels to do what he wants them to do.


  • Invocation:

In this book, John Milton changes the joyous not to the tragic one. He tells us of the disobedience of man.  The fall of man leads to sin and death.  The subject matter is more heroic than the theme of the epics like ‘Illiad, Odyssey, Aeneid’. The celestial muse grants Milton the style of his subject. The muse visits and inspires the poet in his sleep to a fluent language.  So the epic is made easy and spontaneous.

  • Satan Returns to Paradise:

Satan returns to paradise under the veil of darkness of night.  He fears the watch of the angles (Uriel, Gabriel) in the daylight.  He flies round the earth for seven nights.  On the eighth night, he makes a secret entry from the side of Paradise. He enters the Garden by sinking with the rivers Tigiris hiding in the mist.  He roams the sea and lend. He goes northward over the Pontus (black sea) and over Maceties (Sea of Azov). He goes westward from Orontes (Syrian river) to the Isthmus at Darien (Panama).

  • Satan Chooses the Serpent:

Satan makes a close search to assist his cunning scheme. After a long debate within himself, he selects the serpent to the fittest animal to conceal himself.  Whatever Satan does in the guise of the serpent, will go unsuspected on the part of the doer.  If he employed other guise, he will be discovered.  So he chooses the serpent.

  • Satan Soliloquises:

Satan discovers that the world is like heaven. He sees the heavenly atmosphere and structure of the new world.  He says that he would prefer the world to Heaven.He twists the truth that God is devalued, whereas earth is heaven like and man is God like.

  • Satan Determines to Destroy man:

The stars dance around the earth. They carry their lamps dutifully.  They shed the beams of light on it.  The light falls upon the vegetable, animal and man.  He wishes to enjoy the scenery of earth.  But it suddenly shadowed by the thought of his house, hell rocks dens and caves.  The sight of pleasure could only bring him torments. He can derive joy only from act of destruction. He decides to destroy man for whom all this earth was made.


  • Satan Resolves to Revenge God:

            God created man. He made the magnificent earth for him. He created angels to watch over him. Satan is afraid of being watched by the guardian angels. He incarnates into a snake. The serpent sleeps and waits for the approach of the morning. Satan permeates with the power of intellect into the serpent.

  • Adam and Eve Discuss the Day’s work:

            The sacred light shines over the earth at dawn. Adam and Eve get up and join with them. They enjoy the morning fragrance and perfume. They discuss how they can tackle the mounting work effectively. Eve suggests that she expects to have more hands to keep up their pleasant work. Adam’s duty is to discipline the climbing honeysuckle and ivy in their garden. Eve’s work is to spend her time amid the thickest where there are the plenty of trees and roses.

  • Adam Advises Eve:

            Adam praises the duty consciousness of Eve. He speaks of the finer quality of his wife. He clarifies that God did not assign any duty to them. He expresses his fear that if she is alone, harm might befall. He recalls Raphael’s warning to him. He feels that their conjugal love might excite envy in Satan. He advises Eve must not go anywhere separately.

  • Eve Persists:

Eve expresses her sorrow at the doubt of Adam on her firmness. She says that she knows Satan’s job. Adam addresses Eve as ‘Daughter of God and Man’. He describes her as untouched by sin and blame. He insists that Eve should not underestimate the scheming talents of Satan. If she is present with him, he would not allow anybody overcome him.

  • Eve Perverts:

            Eve doesn’t take the advice of her husband. She feels that she is hurt by his remarks. She feels that she is hurt by his remarks. She asks him, how can be happy if they lived unequipped under the threat of foe.

 “Single with like defence wherever met,

            How are we happy, still in fear of harm”

She is ignorant of the foe. Her reason gets eclipsed by the petty feeling of a woman. She says that maker has not created Eden so vulnerable.

  • Adam Insists:

Adam asserts that God had not created things with any defect. He warns Eve that although man is sound in reason, he needs to be cautious and alert. He says that men’s will may be misinformed by false being appearing to be good. He repeats that it is not out of mistrust but it is out of love. He wants her to prove her firmness by obeying him. Even though Eve is submissive, she is still persistent.

  • Eve Withdraws Her Husband:

            “Thus saying, from her husband’s hand her hand

            Soft she withdrew and like a nymph light”

            Eve softly withdraws her hand from her husband’s hand like a fairy. She is likened to the Greek mythological nymphs Oread (the nymph of the mountain) and Dryad (the nymph of the woods). She is also compared with Diana (the Goddess of Chastity). She possesses the gardening instrument of Pales (a Roman divinity of flocks and shepherds), of Ceres (the Goddess of agriculture), of Pomona (the Goddess of fruit). Eve is going to be unhappy that her whole race is to be undertaken by death. Adam looks a beautiful Eve moving away from him, when she vanishes from his eyesight, he desires her stay with him.

  • Satan Admires Eve:

            Satan in the guise of the serpent searches Adam and Eve. While he is seeking them together, he finds Eve alone. She is covered in a veil of sweet smelling flowers. Satan comes nearer through beautiful coverts of cedar, palm or pine. He admires Eve’s garden is more delicious than the garden of Alicinous, king of Phaeacia or the garden of Soloman.


  • Satan Soliloquises:

            Satan marvels at the beauty of love. She is like a heavenly angel in appearance. Satan stands motionless and recollects all his hatred and vengeance. He avoids Adam who has higher intellectual power. He knows that he has landed on the Garden of Eden out of hate not of love.

  • Satan Approaches Eve:

            Satan attempts to get the attention of Eve and tries to lure the eyes of Eve. He zig zags on indirect track like a ship moving in a veering wind. He keeps his belly downwards on the ground. He raises his green gold neck and crested head. Eve hears him rustle in the leaves but she doesn’t notice him. Satan would not lose his hope and he bows his crested head before her. He fawns and licks the ground to catch the eyes of Eve.

  • Satan Flatters Eve:

            Satan is glad to have drawn the attention of Eve. He speaks through the serpent. He uses the tongue of the serpent as an instrument of speech. He begins his cunning temptation by saying that Eve is the greatest wonder of the world. She is the most beautiful image of her creator. All things in God’s creation praise and adore her universally. But here in this Garden of Eden, she has been enclosed in the midst of wild beasts. These beasts cannot see her beauty. There is only one man (Adam) who can appreciate her beauty.

  • Eve is Surprised:

Satan’s words penetrated into the heart of Eve. She surprises hoe a beast speaks in language of man and expresses human thought and feeling. She knows that God did not give the power of speech to the animals. The serpent is the subtlest of all animals. But it is not endowed with the power of speech. So Eve asks the serpent to explain how it has got the power of the speech.


  • The Serpent Explains:

            Satan explains that he was irrational till he tastes a fruit. The fruit spread the smell sweeter than the fennel. He plucked and ate the fruit. Afterwards he felt a change in him. The power of reasoning and speech he attained at once. He was able to ponder all things beautiful and good united in her. Hence he visits to worship her, the sovereign of creatures and the universal Dame.


  • Eve Enquires about the tree:

            When the serpent explains the qualities of the forbidden fruit, Eve enquires where the tree grows. The serpent stands as evidence to the power of the fruit. So her curiosity is aroused. She expresses her feeling by saying like this: “There are many trees of God in the Garden of Eden. They are still unknown to them. They still remain not tasted by them and untouched by human hand”.

“As leaves a greater store of fruit untouched,

            Still hanging incorruptible, till men”


  • Serpent Leads Eve to the Tree:

            The Evil serpent happily addresses Eve as ‘Empress’. He says that the tree is just nearby. It is by a fountain past a thicket where myrrh and balm blossom. He says that if eve allows, he allows, he will take her to the spot immediately. Eve asks the serpent to lead her. The serpent at once rolled leading Eve. He makes the intricate path to the forbidden tree easy to follow. The thought of joy brightens his crest. He is like the wandering light produced by ignited marsh gas. ‘Delusive light’ (Ignotius Fatus) is the work of an evil spirit which misleads the night wanderers to their deaths in bogs and ponds. The ‘Delusive light’ is compared to the crest of the cunning serpent. The serpent leads Eve to the prohibited tree, the root of all our sufferings.

  • Eve looks at the Forbidden Tree:

            Eve says that her visit has been fruitless though there are plenty of fruits in the tree. God has given them all freedom. But He has prevented them from tasting the fruit of knowledge. He has warned them death would be the end of tasting the fruit. Satan replies that they are declared to be the lords of this earth and sky. He asks why she doesn’t eat the fruits of this garden. He appears like a Roman or Athenian orator whose gesture would convey several assurances to the audience.Similarly Satan wins the admiration of his adversary by his looks.

  • Satan Rationalizes:

Satan tributes to the tree of knowledge as sacred, wise, wisdom and the mother of science. He addresses Eve as the ‘Queen of the Universe’. He says her not to be afraid of the threats of death associated with the fruit. He argues how she could die by eating the fruit that gives knowledge. He cites himself as an example. He ate the fruit and he is not dead. He has attained a state higher than other animals. He argues, if God is just, he cannot hurt Eve for having chosen knowledge.

“God therefore cannot hurt ye and be just;

            Not just, not God; not feared than nor obeyed” – Satan

If He hurts then, He is not God; if He is not God, why she should obey to God. Satan states that God’s idea is to keep mankind low and ignorant. God knows that if man eats the fruit, he will rise to the level of God. He declares that God is not the creator. If He has the power of creation, he would not have created the tree of knowledge. If man attains wisdom, how he would hurt God. He says that it is envy on the part of God to forbid it for man.

  • The Tree of Knowledge:

            The arguments of Satan reverberate in her ears pleasantly. The sight of the fruit lures her eyes. Eve praises the tree of knowledge. God has forbidden the eating of the fruit. The forbidden makes the fruit more desirable to Eve.She wonders if death is invented only for them. She asks if the fruit is reserved only for the beasts. She doubts the words of God.

“…………. For us alone

            Was death invented? or to us denied

            This intellectual food, for beasts reserved?”– Eve


  • Eve Decides to Eat:

            Eve says that the fruit is the cure of all. The fruit is tasty and relieves the hunger. It benefits the body and the mind by giving the knowledge of good and evil.So Eve decides to eat the fruit of the tree of knowledge.

  • Eve Eats the Fruit:

Eve rashly plucked and ate the fruit in that evil hour. This act of Eve is felt as a wound by the earth. Nature sighed that the entire natural order has been ruined. Eve has undermined the law of obedience where the whole hierarchical system is governed. As soon as she eats the fruit, the serpent slinks into the thicket. The poor woman does not know that she is ‘eating death’.

  • The Fallen Eve Soliloquizes:

Eve addresses the tree with all her praise for it. She feels that she is growing mature in knowledge like God. She was ignorant, but the tree has become eye-opener. She says that Adam will share with her both blessings and woe. She loves him so dearly. She will endure all deaths with him and her life will have no value without him.

  • Adam Finds Eve near the Tree:

Adam searches Eve in the garden. He waits for Eve’s return joyously. He has a garland made of choicest flowers, in order to adorn her. But delay creates anxiety in him. He confronts Eve near the tree of knowledge when she returns with a bough of fruits in her hand.


  • Eve Narrates Adam of the Fruit:

            Eve explains the story of her delay. She says that the tree is not dangerous and it is a wisdom giver. The serpent ate but remains humanlike in wisdom. She also ate the fruit and grows into godhead. She says that Adam must taste the fruit in order to have equal joy like equal love. If he doesn’t taste it, they shall have different levels of existence. As soon as Adam hears Eve he becomes amazed. He stands astonished and speechless. While horror chills his blood, the garland drops from his hands.

  • Adam’s Sharing of Eve’s Fate:

            Adam describes Eve as the fairest of God’s creation, the best of God’s works, holy, divine, good, gentle and sweet. He asks Eve how she lost art as follows,

“How art thou lost, how on a sudden lost

            Defaced, deflowered and now to death devote” – Adam

He declares his sharing of Eve’s fall. She cannot bear Adam married to another Eve. Adam resolves to die as he feels that the link of nature is to be strong and says that Eve is the flesh of his bone.

“The link of nature draw me: flesh of flesh,

            Bone of my bone thou art, and from thy state” – Adam


  • Eve Amplifies their Bond:

            Eve amplifies the bond by saying that they are one heart and one soul. She feels that tasting the fruit does not have any evil effect. It does not bring death and it enriches life. It opens the eyes and gives new hopes. There is no fear of death in eating the fruit.

  • Eve Embraces Adam:

Eve tells Adam to throw away the fear of death to winds. She embraces Adam and gives the fruit to Adam with her liberal hands. Adam eats the fruit not lacking knowledge of the fruit but he is overcome by female charm.



  • Adam and Eve are Intoxicated:

As soon as Adam eats the fruit, the earth trembles from its innermost levels. Nature once again weeps and groans at the completion of the sin. The sky lowers clouds thunder and shower drops bitter tears. Neither Adam takes heed of thunder, nor does Eve fear to repeat eating of the fruit. The deceptive fruit inflames them with lust. At this sensation, they feel as though divinity developing within them. But in truth, they are intoxicated and so they reel in mirth. Adam becomes a woman worshipper as soon as he takes the fruit. He says that she has brought to him a fruit of rare taste. He admires her beauty.

  • Adam and Eve Feel Guilty:

            Adam and Eve do not adopt any reverent approach to their sexual experience. There are only glance and toying between them. Adam suddenly seizes Eve’s hands and takes her to a shady bank. There are leaves which afford shade and cool. There are flowers which afford softness and fragrance of bed to their amorous and sexual indulgence. Their sleep is disturbed with horrible dreams. They arise from their bed in great emotional disturbance. Their minds are darkened and they feel themselves guilt and shame. It is the same feeling of guilt and shame that assailed the strong Samson when he arose from the bed of the Philistian harlot, Dalilah discovering that all his strength had gone.


  • Adam Accuses Eve:

            Adam accuses Eve for yielding to the temptation of the false worm. The human power of reason and speech has descended to the bestial level. They have lost good and gained evil. Adam recalls the faces of Gods and angels. He feels that he cannot dare face them.

  • Adam and Eve Make Loin Clothes:

            Adam and Eve seek out the leaves of the fig tree to cover their sexual organs. This fig tree is not so much famous for its fruit as for broad leaves. This fig tree is famous in India, growing on Malabar or in Deccan Hills. Adam and Eve with their coverings remind us of the American natives when Columbus discovered them. Their inner state of mind is now rent with discord and turbulence.

  • Adam and Eve Blame each other:

            Adam says that he doesn’t know how that idea came to her mind. Adam says thatif she obeyed him, they would have lived happily. They have lost all goodness and nobility and gained misery and wickedness. Eve says that Adam would have been severe in reproaching her. She says that if Adam had gone to the place where she was accosted by the serpent, then he could not have discovered the fraudulence of the serpent. Thus their fruitless hours are filled with mutual accusation.

Paradise Lost Book IX-Text


1 No more of talk where God or Angel guest

2 With Man, as with his friend, familiar us’d

8 And disobedience; on the part of Heav’n, (error is not a sin but disobedience)



14 Not less but more heroic than the wrath

15 Of stern Achilles on his foe pursu’d (Paradise lost ^ Odyssey,Iliad, Aeneid)



21 Of my celestial patroness, who deigns

  • (Urania=The muse of astronomy.
  • Daughter of Zeus.
  • In Greek= Urania+heaven/heavenly.
  • Milton invokes 3rd time and the last.
  • Before in Book 1 and 7
  • Urania: Milton directly names his muse in the invocation (Book VII of Paradise Lost)




45 Climate, or years, damp my intended wing

46 Depress’d; and much they may if all be mine,

47 Not hers who brings it nightly to my ear. (First 21-47 lines invocation of the muse)



48 The sun was sunk, and after him the star

49 Of Hesperus, whose office is to bring (Hesperus=Vesper=Venus=evening star)



53 When Satan, who late fled before the threats

54 Of Gabriel out of Eden, now improv’d

55 In meditated fraud and malice, bent

56 On Man’s destruction, maugre what might hap (Gabriel-guards the gate of Eden-banished satan out of the Eden )



60 Since Uriel, Regent of the Sun, descried (descried=to catch sight of something)

61 His entrance and forewarn’d the Cherubim

  • Uriel earlier spotted Satan in Eden and warned the heavenly host of his presence (4.555-576).
  • Uriel was introduced in the Argument to book 3.
  • Plural of cherub, one of the chief ranks of angels.



63 The space of seven continu’d nights he rode

64 With darkness–thrice the equinoctial line

65 He circl’d, four times cross’d the car of Night

66 From pole to pole, traversing each colure–

67On the eighth return’d and, on the coast averse





68 From entrance or cherubic watch, by stealth

69 Found unsuspected way. There was a place

70 (Now not, though Sin, not Time, first wrought the change)

71 Where Tigris, at the foot of Paradise,

72 Into a gulf shot under ground, till part

73 Rose up a fountain by the Tree of Life.

74 In with the river sunk and with it rose

75 Satan, involv’d in rising mist; then sought

76 Where to lie hid. Sea he had search’d and land

77 From Eden over Pontus, and the pool (Pontus=Black sea)

78 Maeotis, up beyond the river Ob;

(*Northward: The pool Maeotis=the sea of Azof) (Ob=Syberian river)

79 Downward as far antarctic; and, in length,

80 West from Orontes to the ocean barr’d 

(*Westward: Orontes=Syrian river, Darien=Isthmus of Panama)

81At Darien; thence to the land where flows

82 Ganges and Indus. Thus the orb he roam’d

(*Across the Pacific to India :Ganges and Indus)

83 With narrow search, and with inspection deep

84 Consider’d every creature, which of all

85 Most opportune might serve his wiles, and found (wiles-tricks)

86 The serpent subtlest beast of all the field.

87 Him, after long debate, irresolute

88 Of thoughts revolv’d, his final sentence chose

89 Fit vessel, fittest imp of fraud, in whom

( *imp=offspring) (*The serpent is the proper vessel and the fittest imp for Satan)

90 To enter, and his dark suggestions hide

91 From sharpest sight; for in the wily snake,

92 Whatever sleights, none would suspicious mark

93 As from his wit and native subtlety   (subtlety=barely noticeable)


99 “O Earth, how like to Heav’n, if not preferr’d



175 Provokes my envy, this new favourite

176 Of Heav’n, this Man of clay, son of despite,

177 Whom us the more to spite, his Maker rais’d

178 From dust: spite then with spite is best repaid.”

179 So saying, through each thicket, dank or dry,

180 Like a black mist low-creeping, he held on

181 His midnight search where soonest he might find

182 The serpent. Him fast sleeping soon he found,

183 In labyrinth of many a round self-roll’d,

184 His head the midst, well stor’d with subtle wiles:



214 Let us divide our labours–thou where choice

215 Leads thee, or where most needs, whether to wind

216 The woodbine round this arbour, or direct

217 The clasping ivy where to climb; while I,

218 In yonder spring of roses intermix’d

219 With myrtle, find what to redress till noon;

241 Love, not the lowest end of human life. (* end-object)

242 For not to irksome toil, but to delight,

249 For solitude sometimes is best society, (Eve argues)



273 “Offspring of Heav’n and Earth, and all Earth’s lord!

274 That such an enemy we have, who seeks

275 Our ruin, both by thee inform’d I learn,

276 And from the parting Angel overheard

(*Parting angel=Raphael to Adam, “beware and stand fast in book 8)

291 “Daughter of God and Man, immortal Eve!—

292 For such thou art, from sin and blame entire–

311 More wise, more watchful, stronger, if need were (Adam to Eve)




324 Subtle or violent, we not endu’d

325 Single with like defence wherever met,

326 How are we happy, still in fear of harm?

332 By us, who rather double honour gain



385 Thus saying, from her husband’s hand her hand

386 Soft she withdrew, and, like a wood-nymph light,

387 Oread or Dryad or of Delia’s train,

393 To Pales or Pomona, thus adorn’d,

394 Likest she seem’d–Pomona when she fled

395 Vertumnus–or to Ceres in her prime,

396 Yet virgin of Proserpina from Jove.

(*Oread-Mountain nymph), (Dryad-Wood nymph), (Delia’s train-Diana or Artemis-Goddess of the hunt/chastity),(Pales-Roman Goddess of flocks and herds), (Pomona-Roman Goddess of fruits), (Ceres-Goddess of agriculture,mother of prosperina ), (Vertumnus-Country deity of Roman mythology)


439 Spot more delicious than those gardens feign’d

440 Or of reviv’d Adonis or renown’d

441 Alcinous, host of old Laertes’ son,

442 Or that, not mystic, where the sapient king

(* Adonis-garden of Adonis, Adonis-slain by a boar, rescued by Venus and spends every six months with her in this garden). (*Alcinous-King of Phoecia who entertained the wandering Odysseus (Laertes’son) possessed wonderful gardens)


459 Her graceful innocence, her every air




466 Of guile, of hate, of envy, of revenge.

467 But the hot Hell that always in him burns, (Satan-soliloquises)



471 Fierce hate he recollects, and all his thoughts

472 Of mischief, gratulating, thus excites:

475 What hither brought us? Hate, not love, nor hope

476 Of Paradise for Hell, hope here to taste

477 Of pleasure, but all pleasure to destroy,

478 Save what is in destroying–other joy

479 To me is lost. Then let me not let pass

480 Occasion which now smiles. Behold alone

481 The Woman, opportune to all attempts;



499 Fold above fold, a surging maze: his head

500 Crested aloft, and carbuncle his eyes:

(*Maze-Zigzag, belly on the ground, to get Eve’s attention he raises his green gold neck and crested head, Eve hears the rustle in the leaves but doesn’t notice him, the serpent bows his crested head before her. He fawns and licks the ground to catch the eyes of Eve)



547 A Goddess among Gods, ador’d and serv’d

548 By Angels numberless, thy daily train?” (Satan seduces Eve)



553 “What may this mean? Language of Man pronounc’d

554 By tongue of brute, and human sense express’d?

555 The first at least of these I thought denied

556 To beasts, whom God on their creation-day

557 Created mute to all articulate sound;



644 Led Eve, our credulous Mother, to the Tree

645 Of Prohibition, root of all our woe;

646 Which when she saw, thus to her guide she spake:

647 “Serpent, we might have spar’d our coming hither,

648 Fruitless to me, though fruit be here to excess,



669 Rais’d, as of some great matter to begin.

670 As when of old some orator renown’d

671 In Athens or free Rome, where eloquence



679 “O sacred, wise, and wisdom-giving Plant,

680 Mother of science! now I feel thy power

(* Satan’s words are addressed to Eve and not the tree)



700 God therefore cannot hurt ye, and be just;

701 Not just, not God; not fear’d then, nor obey’d:

704 Why but to keep ye low and ignorant,

711 Internal Man, is but proportion meet:

732 Goddess humane, reach then and freely taste!”

733 He ended; and his words, replete with guile, (guile-artful deception)

734 Into her heart too easy entrance won.




773 What fear I then? rather, what know to fear

774 Under this ignorance of good and evil,

775 Of God or death, of law or penalty?

776 Here grows the cure of all: this fruit divine,

777 Fair to the eye, inviting to the taste,

778 Of virtue to make wise. What hinders, then

779 To reach and feed at once both body and mind?”

780 So saying, her rash hand in evil hour

781 Forth-reaching to the fruit, she pluck’d, she eat.

782 Earth felt the wound, and Nature from her seat,

783 Sighing through all her works, gave signs of woe

784 That all was lost.



791 Greedily she ingorg’d without restraint,

792 And knew not eating death. Satiate at length,

793 And height’n’d as with wine, jocund and boon,

794 Thus to herself she pleasingly began:

795 “O sovran, virtuous, precious of all trees



826 This may be well; but what if God have seen,

827 And death ensue? Then I shall be no more;

828 And Adam, wedded to another Eve,

829 Shall live with her enjoying, I extinct–

830 A death to think! Confirm’d then, I resolve:

831 Adam shall share with me in bliss or woe!

832 So dear I love him that with him all deaths

833 I could endure, without him live no life.” (Eve’s Soliloquy)



889 The fatal trespass done by Eve, amaz’d,

890 Astonied stood and blank, while horror chill

891 Ran through his veins and all his joints relax’d.

892 From his slack hand the garland wreath’d for Eve

893 Down dropp’d, and all the faded roses shed.

894 Speechless he stood and pale, till thus at length

895 First to himself he inward silence broke:

896 “O fairest of creation, last and best

897 Of all God’s works, creature in whom excell’d

898 Whatever can to sight or thought be form’d

899 Holy, divine, good, amiable, or sweet!

900 How art thou lost! how on a sudden lost,

901 Defac’d, deflow’r’d, and now to death devote! (Adam’s turmoil)

914 The link of nature draw me: flesh of flesh,

915 Bone of my bone thou art, and from thy state



997 He scrupl’d not to eat,

998 Against his better knowledge, not deceiv’d,

999 But fondly overcome with female charm.

1000 Earth trembl’d from her entrails, as again

1001 In pangs, and Nature gave a second groan;

1002 Sky lour’d and, muttering thunder, some sad drops

1003 Wept at completing of the mortal sin



1013 Carnal desire inflaming. He on Eve

1014 Began to cast lascivious eyes; she him

1015 As wantonly repaid: in lust they burn,

1016 Till Adam thus ‘gan Eve to dalliance move:

1017 “Eve, now I see thou art exact of taste



1022 Much pleasure we have lost, while we abstain’d

1023 From this delightful fruit, nor known till now



1060 Herculean Samson, from the harlot-lap

1061 Of Philistean Dalilah, and wak’d

( * Book of Judges (16)- Samson-of the tribe of Dan, Strong like Hercules  was shorn of his strength while sleeping)

1067 “O Eve, in evil hour thou didst give ear

1068 To that false Worm, of whomsoever taught. (Worm-serpent)

1072 Both good and evil, good lost and evil got:

1073 Bad fruit of knowledge, if this be to know,

1074 Which leaves us naked thus, of honour void,

1075 Of innocence, of faith, of purity,

1079 Even shame, the last of evils. Of the first

1090 Hide me, where I may never see them more! (them=heavenly shapes)



1100 Into the thickest wood. There soon they chose

1101 The fig-tree–not that kind for fruit renown’d,

1102 But such as at this day, to Indians known,

1103 In Malabar or Decan spreads her arms.



1121 They sat them down to weep. Nor only tears

1122 Rain’d at their eyes, but high winds worse within

1123 Began to rise, high passions–anger, hate,

1124 Mistrust, suspicion, discord–and shook sore

1125 Their inward state of mind, calm region once

1126 And full of peace, now toss’d and turbulent:

1154 As good have grown there still, a lifeless rib!

1175 But confidence then bore thee on, secure (*overconfidence of Eve)


1186 She first his weak indulgence will accuse.”

1187 Thus they in mutual accusation spent

1188 The fruitless hours, but neither self-condemning;

1189 And of their vain contest appear’d no end.



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