[Milton-L] Milton & Lilith

Jameela Lares Jameela.Lares at usm.edu
Wed Apr 20 06:37:22 EDT 2011


Actually, Lewis began Magician's Nephew after LWW, but did not finish it until much later.

Jameela Lares
Professor of English
The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive, #5037
Hattiesburg, MS  39406-0001
601 266-4319 ofc
601 266-5757 fax
________________________________________
From: milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu [milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu] On Behalf Of M. A. Beales [mabeales at gmail.com]
Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 11:31 PM
To: John Milton Discussion List
Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Milton & Lilith

In book 9, in the speech in which Adam is reflecting on Eve eating the
apple, he mentions the possibility of God making "a second Eve," which
I remember being taught could be a coded reference to Lilith (ie.,that
Adam may be deciding whether to make Eve a second Lilith).  Does
anyone know where that reading may have come from, or is it unique to
the professor who taught the first half of my undergraduate British
lit survey?

More on Lewis: I believe the details of the White Witch's ancestry
come up in Lewis's _The Magician's Nephew_, which he wrote after LWW
but which describes the origin of the world of Narnia--that's where
the story of Lilith and the White Witch as a Jinn/giant appears.  In
_Prince Caspian_, (I think) Lucy mentions the Jinn in a way not
connected to the White Witch: she talks about how suddenly they are
called into Narnia, and likens it to a Jinn having to suddenly appear
in an old tale.  In _The Silver Chair_, the witch is supposed to be of
the same kind as the White Witch.  Lewis wrote Silver Chair after LWW
but before the Magician's Nephew.  I've sometimes wondered whether
Lewis didn't work out the mythological background of the White Witch
until he wrote the Magician's Nephew five years later.

On Tue, Apr 19, 2011 at 11:04 PM, Salwa Khoddam <skhoddam at cox.net> wrote:
> This Lilith figure is so intriguing.  In the passage from Lewis's LWW cited
> by Jameela (which slipped my mind, rather embarrassing since I just finished
> a book on The Chronicles of Narnia--coming out in June, 2011, published by
> Winged Lion Press), Lewis continues to say that Lilith was one of the Jinn
> (a spirit in Islamic mythology who appears in animal or human form)  and
> from the other side of her ancestry she comes from the giants.  Paul Ford in
> Companion to Narnia writes that Lilith is "A female demon of both Babylonian
> Mythology and the Hebrew tradition, who murders newborn babies, harms women
> in chldbirth, and haunts wildernesses on the lookout for children" (286).
> Sin in PL seems rather tame in comparison, but then Sin is an allegorical
> figure.
> About the influence of George MacDonald's Lilith on Lewis's White Witch,
> Glen GoodKnight suggests that there is an influence, but that Lewis in LWW
> emphasized her hatred of humanity and her child stealing rather than her
> attractiveness.  I haven't read MacDonald's Lilith yet.
> Best Wishes,
> Salwa
>
> Salwa Khoddam, Ph.D.
> Professor of English, Emerita
> Oklahoma City University
> 2501 N. Blackwelder
> OKC, OK  73106
> Phone:  405-208-5127
> Email:  skhoddam at cox.net
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Jameela Lares" <Jameela.Lares at usm.edu>
> To: "John Milton Discussion List" <milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 10:12 AM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Milton & Lilith
>
>
> Lewis himself identifies a connection with Lilith, actually.  In "What
> Happened after Dinner" in _The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe_, Mr.
> Beaver says of the White Witch, "she comes of your father Adam's . . . first
> wife, her they called Lilith" (page 81 in my edition).
>
> What I am not sure about is how much of Lewis's mention has to do with
> George MacDonald's book, Lilith (1895). Much, I imagine, as Lewis was
> influenced by MacDonald.
>
> Jameela Lares
> Professor of English
> The University of Southern Mississippi
> 118 College Drive, #5037
> Hattiesburg, MS  39406-0001
> 601 266-4319 ofc
> 601 266-5757 fax
> ________________________________________
> From: milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu
> [milton-l-bounces at lists.richmond.edu] On Behalf Of Salwa Khoddam
> [skhoddam at cox.net]
> Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 9:15 AM
> To: John Milton Discussion List
> Subject: Re: [Milton-L] Milton & Lilith
>
> Thank you, Larisa.  This is one of the most helpful sources on Lilith.  Some
> critics see a relationship between her and The White Witch in The Lion, the
> Witch, and the Wardrobe.
> Best,
> Salwa
>
> Salwa Khoddam, Ph.D.
> Professor of English, Emerita
> Oklahoma City University
> 2501 N. Blackwelder
> OKC, OK  73106
> Phone:  405-208-5127
> Email:  skhoddam at cox.net<mailto:skhoddam at cox.net>
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Zámbóné Kocic Larisa<mailto:larisa at lit.u-szeged.hu>
> To: 'John Milton Discussion List'<mailto:milton-l at lists.richmond.edu>
> Sent: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 3:55 AM
> Subject: RE: [Milton-L] Milton & Lilith
>
> Dear Ryan,
>
> I have for some time entertained the notion myself, but after an in-depth
> research I discarded it as baseless  – the best one can come up with are
> conjectures. I doubt not, that Milton knew the story, but he obviously had
> no use for it in his epic.  I would say that Lilith plays greater role among
> his readers, especially those of the 18th and 19th century, who certainly
> wished to see Sin as prefiguring or embodying Lilith (Fuseli’s painting of
> the Lapland witches comes readily into one’s mind, and indeed, the Night-Hag
> part – „Lur’d with the smell of infant blood” – from Milton’s extended
> simile does resemble Lilith, however, it is worth noting that Milton is
> comparing not so much Sin with the Night-Hag, but rather the Hellhounds
> surround Sin with those following the Night-Hag). If you student wishes to
> pursue this matter, I would recommend Amy Scerba online article on Lilth, in
> which she does make a passing remark to Milton identifying his Sin („Snakie
> Sorceress [2.724]) to Lilith:
> http://feminism.eserver.org/theory/papers/lilith
> I hope this was of some help.
> Best,
>
> Larisa Kocic-Zambo
>
>
> From: Ryan Paul [mailto:ryanspaul at gmail.com]
> Sent: Monday, April 11, 2011 8:51 PM
> To: John Milton Discussion List
> 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.
>
> Best,
> Ryan Paul
>
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