[Milton-L] Milton & Lilith

Jean E. Graham graham at tcnj.edu
Fri Apr 15 14:22:52 EDT 2011


When researching for an article tracing the sources for C.S. Lewis' witches (Graham, Jean E.  “Women, Sex, and Power: Circe and Lilith in Narnia.”  Children’s Literature Quarterly 29 (spring/summer 2004): 32-44), I could find no evidence of a connection--although like you I  assume there is one.


Jean E. Graham
Associate Professor of English
The College of New Jersey

----- Original Message -----
From: "Ryan Paul" <ryanspaul at gmail.com>
To: "John Milton Discussion List" <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
Sent: Monday, April 11, 2011 2:50:39 PM GMT -05:00 US/Canada Eastern
Subject: [Milton-L] Milton & Lilith

Dear E-Miltonists: 

A student asked me about Lilith and whether Milton knew her story or was influenced by it. I assume that Milton was well aware of the story, but I have no idea if his works, PL or otherwise, make any references to her. A scan through the index of Shoulson's Milton and the Rabbis did not turn up any mention of her, and the only mention I could find in a (very cursory) web search of Milton scholarship turned up a brief aside in Denis Saurat's 1922 article "Milton and the Zohar ," where he suggests that perhaps the character of Sin was based on the Lilith legend. All this suggests to me that Milton simply wasn't interested in her story, but I wanted to check with the list to see if any of you either knew of scholarship on the subject or had your own theories about her role in shaping Milton's theology or poetry. 

Thanks in advance for any thoughts. 

Ryan Paul 

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