[Milton-L] Re: Edenic geography

Michael Travis Streeter streetm at stthom.edu
Wed Dec 1 09:50:01 EST 2004


I would agree partly with Louis' resolution of the contradition.  Milton is certainly being more precise when he employs the word "paradise" when contrasted with "Eden."  But by greater implication, Milton's particular choice of the preposition "through" might also suggest the transformation of Eden as a paradise shared between Adam and Eve to a paradise cultivated within Adam and Eve (recall the "paradse within thee" XII.587).  This would be an appropriate conclusion to draw from the passage if you consider the resonance it carries throughout the final books.

Mike Streeter
streetm at stthom.edu

Chris Baker wrote:

At the end of Bk. 12, Adam and Eve are ushered "to th' Eastern Gate" 
and "down the Cliff as fast / To the subjected Plain."  They then look 
back and behold "all the Eastern side of Paradise."  It now seems as 
though they have exited Eden, but have they? In the final line, they are 
still taking their "solitary way" "Through Eden."  At what point in the 
poem do they actually leave Paradise?  
Chris Baker

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