[Milton-L] The popular Milton

Nancy Charlton nbcharlton at comcast.net
Fri Jan 15 13:48:01 EST 2010

I thought Anu might have mentioned that "eremite" is close to its 
English linguistic descendant "hermit," as he usually lists such 

And he might have also quoted Keats' "Bright Star!" especially since the 
sonnet had the notice of the world a couple months back when the film of 
that name surfaced:

    Bright Star! would I were steadfast as thou art--
    Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night,
    And watching, with eternal lids apart,
    Like Nature's patient sleepless Eremite, ...

Keats is ever indebted to Milton, and it could be said that this sonnet 
is a de facto travesty of "When I consider" or "How soon hath Time."  
Keats is concerned with the impact of his own impressions on himself, 
whereas Milton is always looking for cosmic moral significance.  Too 
facile a comparison, perhaps, but what emerges is awe for Keats' mastery 
of his craft, admiration for his youthfulness and a greater awareness of 

What a way to start the day! A refreshing contrast to Pat Robertson's 
doom upon Haiti.

Nancy Charlton

Carol Barton wrote:
> He surfaced this morning in Wordsmith.org's Word-a-Day lexicon:
> A.Word.A.Day
> with Anu Garg
>       eremite
> (AIR-uh-myt) <http://wordsmith.org/words/eremite.mp3>
> /noun:/ A recluse, especially for religious reasons.
> From Latin eremita, from Greek eremia (desert), from eremos (solitary).
> "Poor Joyce Maynard. Not since Martina Hingis submarined a serve to 
> Steffi Graf in the French Open has a woman been so universally 
> excoriated for underhanded conduct. And all Maynard did was sell a 
> bunch of mash notes she had saved from a boyfriend of 27 years ago to 
> raise college tuition for her children. Except that the boyfriend 
> happened to be J.D. Salinger -- the eremite of Cornish, N.H."
> Mark Leyner; How to Avoid Salinger Syndrome; Time (New York); May 7, 1999.
> "Thou Spirit, who led'st this glorious Eremite
> Into the desert, his victorious field
> Against the spiritual foe, and brought'st him thence."
> John Milton; Paradise Regained; 1671.
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