[Milton-L] Re prelaps seasons: when is a question a good one?

John Rumrich rumrich at mail.utexas.edu
Fri Jan 8 14:01:06 EST 2010


And arguably in heaven, too, except for procreation among the angels.


On Jan 8, 2010, at 10:46 AM, richard strier wrote:

> Interesting that the more that folks ACTUALLY LOOK at the poem, the  
> less
> tenable the "no seasons," or only one, or even only two becomes.  I  
> guess I'm a
> naive reader, but "all seasons" kind of seems to me to mean all  
> seasons.  I will
> not repeat my argument about why I think M is not worried about  
> saying this.
> He seems to be going out of his way to indicate that all natural  
> processes take
> place in Eden.
>
> ---- Original message ----
>> Date: Thu, 7 Jan 2010 22:35:31 -0500
>> From: James Rovira <jamesrovira at gmail.com>
>> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Re prelaps seasons: when is a question a  
>> good one?
>> To: John Milton Discussion List <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
>>
>>  That could be it, Jeffery, thank you.  I think we
>>  should do more with Harold Skulsky's reference to
>>  the Hours.  I noticed those references while going
>>  through the text but didn't have time to think them
>>  through.  The Hours also represent the seasons in
>>  Greek lit -- Spring, Summer, Autumn.  Winter must
>>  be divided between Autumn and Spring (living in
>>  Ohio, right now I'm thinking, "must be nice").   So
>>  the presence of the Hours is the presence of the
>>  seasons.  I think if Spring and Autumn dance hand
>>  in hand, what you have are two seasons -- Spring and
>>  Autumn, no winter, no summer, but continual
>>  harvest.
>>
>>  I was thinking too of these lines in bk 5:
>>
>>  <<To whom thus Eve. Adam, earths hallowd mould,
>>  Of God inspir'd, small store will serve, where
>>  store,
>>  All seasons, ripe for use hangs on the stalk;
>>  Save what by frugal storing firmness gains
>>  To nourish, and superfluous moist consumes: [ 325
>>  ]>>
>>
>>  Jim R
>>
>>  On Thu, Jan 7, 2010 at 6:38 PM, Horace Jeffery
>>  Hodges <jefferyhodges at yahoo.com> wrote:
>>
>>    Judith, I think that Jim might be conflating two
>>    passages:
>>
>>
>>    The Birds thir quire apply; aires, vernal aires,
>>    Breathing the smell of field and grove, attune
>>    The trembling leaves, while Universal Pan
>>    Knit with the Graces and the Hours in dance
>>    Led on th' Eternal Spring. (PL 4.264-268)
>>
>>    . . . Rais'd of grassie terf
>>    Thir Table was, and mossie seats had round,
>>    And on her ample Square from side to side
>>    All Autumn pil'd, though Spring and Autumn here
>>    Danc'd hand in hand. (PL 5.391-395)
>>
>>
>>    [Thomas H. Luxon, ed. The Milton Reading Room,
>>    January 2009]
>>
>>
>>    The implication is that "There is continuall
>>    Spring, and haruest there / Continuall, both
>>    meeting at one tyme," but I wouldn't say that
>>    "there an explicit reference in PL just to that
>>    very thing -- continual Spring and harvest,"
>>    though the dancing in both passages suggests that
>>    Milton was linking the two.
>>
>>
>>    Jeffery Hodges
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