So, immediately after my post last night, I again thought of my classmates comment on Eve and how she eavesdropped. I agree with Amita, I don’t believe it was a sin that Eve secretly heard Adam and Raphael’s conversation, because it’s true, how could she know she wasn’t supposed to hear? But anyways, I digress. I must have been in a weird mindset, but I thought about the word “eavesdrop”. Eve and drop. I thought, “there’s no way”. Immediately, I looked to Google to look for the origin of the word. Ultimately, I was disappointed, but relieved to find out that the word doesn’t come from the actions of Eve. I have no idea why I thought the origin of the word would point to the fall of mankind, but it was worth a shot lol. The word eavesdrop derives from the following: “Eavesdrop started off literally: first it referred to the water that fell from the eaves of a house, then it came to mean the ground where that water fell. Eventually, eavesdropper described someone who stood within the eavesdrop of a house to overhear a conversation inside”. So, to conclude my blog, I was wrong to think that the word eavesdrop derived from Milton’s Eve secretly listening to Adam and Raphael’s conversation. But hey, it was worth a shot right?
I thought it was very interesting when (sorry I forget your name), but one of our classmates brought up the very interesting point that, perhaps-and a very strong perhaps- Eve had been eavesdropping on the conversation that took place between Raphael and Adam in Book 8. Although it is never revealed if she actually did or not, the possibility of her eavesdropping would essentially mean that because of her actions, downfall was inevitable. It would also mean she was motivated to separate from Adam, possibly to prove a point. I wonder if Milton purposely kept that information hidden from his audience…
Urania is a character (Muse) that I have been thinking about, and the similarity of Muses to the Holy Spirit. Was Milton a believer of a trinity, or does his relationship between the Father and the Son cancel out his belief in a Holy Spirit? Urania and how she is a “source of inspiration” makes me think that Milton is using Urania as a replacement for the Holy Ghost in PL.
Here’s a couple of images from Book VI of PL:
A closer look at the Chariot The Son uses:
Here’s one image of the actual fighting:
Again, it’s important to remember that there is a lot of symbolism, and actions that pertain to themes like choice, time, and forgiveness in particular. I would say that choice is a huge theme that I will go into on Tuesday.
I’m presenting on Book 6 of PL on Tuesday, and I thought that it’d be a good idea to give sort of a preview to what I’m going to be presenting about. For one, there’s a lot that happens in this book, and a lot of decisions that need to be deeply analyzed.
For one, I won’t be going into the following areas, but they are important to consider:
- The fact that the fallen angels, including Satan, can feel pain
- The battle tactics, such as use of cannons and hills
- Angels can ooze “humors” from their body
Areas that I will be focusing on:
- The decision to allow the Son to end the war
- Significance of the chariot that the Son rides
- Does it make sense to have the war?
Looking forward to presenting on Tuesday!
Interestingly enough, I made somewhat of a weird connection in one of the poems I read for my ENG 391 Class. In our discussion of Hawthorne’s “The Birthmark”, Aylmer who is a “man of science” focuses on removing a birthmark off the face of his wife Georgiana. Throughout the story, she is split between whether to think of it as a bad or a good thing. As the story unfolds, Aylmer is somewhat of an alchemist, and unknowingly gives potions to Georgiana, trying to remove the birthmark, but not completely. Once he successfully gets it off with the help of a potion, and with her permission, he ends up killing her. Our class discussed on many things/ideas that the birthmark (which was the shape of a hand) could mean. I personally thought it could be connected with Milton’s idea of sin. Her birthmark could have been symbolic for sin, something that all humans encounter at one point in their life. Without sin, humans aren’t really human-like, but more of “puppets in the motions”. I am planning on writing a position paper on this, and would love some feedback!
Here’s the story if you want to read it by any chance:
It’s interesting to me that Milton finds great use of Biblical phrases to support his “pamphlets”. Ultimately, with his rich use of sophistication for creating these works, he organizes his works in a way to support the message he is carrying across.
“With every sentence and almost every clause interwoven with simile or metaphor, the passage seems a riotous profusion. And the passage is profuse, though there is also in it something of an organizing principle that we can identify”.
With his play on words, he uses language to create an image pulling words from the Bible.
“Milton, especially in his early prose, develops a way of speaking about abstract notions as if they were concrete and living things”.
In my non-fiction writing course, we were just having a discussion on how hard it is to create an image for notions, or in our case emotions. That’s why writers find it easier to just use an object to create an image that is relatable. If I understood right, Milton could essentially create an image for abstract ideas? If this is true, then he truly is a gifted writer.
Lycidas makes me think of death. I know, great start to my blog. But as I post this I hope it doesn’t offend anyone in any way, but I saw something on the news that made me think of the poem Lycidas. The story of Lycidas focuses on how Lycidas was a promising young man who suddenly died (drowning). It also focuses on how his Earthly actions are almost pointless (because he had yet to make a name for himself?). Anyways, the connection I saw was made because of something I saw on the news: A young student who was a senior this year, unfortunately died in a car crash recently. It made me sad to think that such a promising young student who was basically at the finish line of his academic career, wasn’t able to enjoy what he had been working at so hard. Lycidas, in the story is actually going to heaven (which is a positive note in regards to the poem). And I think that although it is very hard to hear that one of our VCU students tragically passed away, it was promising to see that many of his friends said that he would want them to be strong for him and continue to live life in a positive way. There’s a scholarship being made in honor of him, and many people showed up to a vigil in honor of him as well. Update: Brandon Dorns was his name, I feel like I should put in his name out of respect. Anyways, what I was getting at is that perhaps life on Earth isn’t meaningless, even with the little things we do, leaves a big impact on the people around you.
If my memory is working properly, I believe we talked about choice on Tuesday.
Now, although it was originally presented as why do we have so many options/abundance, it eventually shaped itself into asking why do we have choice? When Dr. Campbell said that in order for there to be good (or at least value in good), there has to be bad, that got me thinking. It seems as if God almost used Adam and Eve as an experiment to see how they would cope with temptation. Not to get into predestination or anything, but if he somehow knows what their fate would be, why would he make them in the first place? I’m sure I don’t have the answer, or anyone else. But, it’d be an interesting topic to discuss possibly when we get to Paradise Lost.
Well, for one I would like to say, Milton genuinely scares me. When you talked about the “experience” of reading Paradise Lost, I thought that Milton had to have been in a particular state of mind to write that epic piece. Losing a sense that you are born with is a terrible thing. And perhaps this is what allowed him to write the piece. Many great people throughout history lose a sense (hearing, sight, etc.) and go on to do many great things. Maybe it’s the loss of the certain sense that allows them to think differently than they originally do. With the loss of sight, I’m thinking that Milton’s perspective of time definitely changed. Although I don’t think he had lost his sight when he wrote his Sonnet 7, I definitely think that there is some weird type of coincidence that he lost his sight.