[Milton-L] Milton Judges in SA

Paul Miller pm9 at comcast.net
Sat Feb 23 21:03:17 EST 2008

"with head a while enclin'd,
And eyes fast fixt he stood, as one who pray'd",

This description as we have discussed is from the subjective view of the messenger.   Milton knows the reader is one up on the messenger in that we have read Judges which SA follows except where clearly not.  In other words in the poem it is usually clear where Milton departs from Judges and where he more or less stays with the basic biblical narrative. In  the case under discussion where the messenger describes at a distance Samson between the pillars with head down as one who prayed right at the time  of the biblical narrative that we, not the messenger, know he does pray then we need a stronger mandate from the text to speculate that he does not than we have from Milton.  The messenger can speculate, the informed biblically literate reader can not in this case.

Paul Miller

So Hills amid the Air encounterd Hills
Hurl'd to and fro with jaculation dire, 
That under ground, they fought in dismal 
shade --- Paradise Lost
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