[Milton-L] the sociable spirit
jfleming at sfu.ca
Thu Feb 27 13:17:09 EST 2014
Teaching PL 5 last week, I was struck more than ever by:
"Down thither prone in flight
He speeds, and through the vast Ethereal Skie
Sailes between worlds and worlds, with steddie wing
Now on the polar windes, then with quick Fann
Winnows the buxom Air; till within soare
Of Towring Eagles , to all the Fowles he seems
A Phœnix , gaz'd by all, as that sole Bird
When to enshrine his reliques in the Sun's
Bright Temple, to Ægyptian Theb's he flies.
At once on th' Eastern cliff of Paradise
He lights, and to his proper shape returns
A Seraph wingd; six wings he wore, to shade
His lineaments Divine; the pair that clad
Each shoulder broad, came mantling o're his brest
With regal Ornament; the middle pair
Girt like a Starrie Zone his waste, and round
Skirted his loines and thighes with downie Gold
And colours dipt in Heav'n; the third his feet
Shaddowd from either heele with featherd maile
Skie-tinctur'd grain. Like Maia's son he stood,
And shook his Plumes, that Heav'nly fragrance filld
The circuit wide." (PL 5.266-287)
A stunning contrast, it seems to me, with this:
"Therefore when he went to seek a man, he found Raphael that was an angel.
But he knew him not." (Book of Tobit 5:4-5)
To which our attention is drawn at PL 4.166-71 and (more importantly) 5.219-23.
J ames Dougal Fleming
Department of English
Simon Fraser University
Burnaby -- British Columbia -- Canada.
Upstairs was a room for travelers. ‘You know, I shall take it for the rest of my life,’ Vasili Ivanovich is reported to have said as soon as he had entered it.
-- Vladimir Naboko v , " Cloud, Castle, Lake'
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the Milton-L