[Milton-L] The War in Heaven

Harold Skulsky hskulsky at email.smith.edu
Tue Jul 11 16:36:49 EDT 2006

It's clear, to me at least, that we are speaking at cross purposes. My
answers to (1) and (2) below will have to do, I'm afraid.

(1) A "cue," which may or may not be "meant" -- is this not the very
definition of an esoteric reading? 

Answer to (1): There is always a possibility--in Milton's case no more
than a bare possibility--that a speaker manages to say something he
doesn't mean; in many cases this involves the misuse of a convention,
either lexical or pragmatic (e.g., a cue). Conventions need not be

(2) In any case, what are the "learned but well-known cues" in this
case? The word "chariot"? Is that not just a word? 

Answer to (2): The chariot passage is a passage, not a word; words are
nothing out of context, and here the context is richly allusive.
Regretfully, I have no time, space, or energy for a commentary. I am
more than happy to let Lieb and Revard speak for me. 

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