[Milton-L] early "sex"

James Rovira jamesrovira at gmail.com
Wed Nov 19 10:10:23 EST 2014


I think I have missed some posts, but perhaps we should make more of the
one example of angelic sex in *PL* that most closely resembles human sex?
It has been mentioned, but might need more attention. Satan, Sin, and Death
form a "family" that was created through and works on dynamics very similar
to human families of *Milton's period *(I am not extending these
assumptions into the present -- that's just not a discussion I want to have
here): generative sex producing offspring. In the case of this angel,
though, this angelic sex is pure narcissism.

Does the example of Satan, Sin, and Death reveal that generative sex was
possible among angels? If so, then no other angel chose to participate in
it. If not, then Satan forms a special case, perhaps only because Sin was
not herself an angel, but sprang from Satan's head -- so that in this case
angels cannot generate with other angels, but only with derived beings.

I too have always read Satan and Beelzebub as two different characters.
J.D. Fleming's observation that they are typically just two different
choices for the same character has always been in the back of my mind, but
I have always assumed Milton just chose to go in a different direction with
that tradition. The suggestion that they're really the same person seems
intriguing to me. I'll keep it in mind when I read PL again. If they are
separate characters, sexual intimacy between the two would seem to follow a
model in which Satan has a "family" (Sin and Death) "back home" (in hell)
but has male lovers on the battlefield, which I think Byron might call a
Greek model? Anything particularly new here? I hadn't picked up on any
special intimacy between Beelzebub and Satan either until now.

Much appreciation for all contributions to the discussion, and I'm very
glad that London is working on an Edenic parking solution. In my mind, any
world that has cars at all is Purgatory at best.

We might want to consider the implications of the earth having a perfect,
seasonless climate year round. It would have a much higher population
capacity that our current earth does, and Eden would, I think, continue to
extend outward as Adam's and Eve's family grew, the outer boundaries being
marked by the amount of cultivated garden. I don't see any real problem for
millennia, even not taking into account the transformation of unfallen
human beings into heavenly beings.

Jim R

On Tue, Nov 18, 2014 at 7:20 PM, JD Fleming <jfleming at sfu.ca> wrote:

> Doubt, I take it, is the spice of understanding. But not the negation of
> it.
>
> Anyway, M cd very easily have rendered this whole part of the meal much
> blander by *not* calling Satan's number 2 by a name that itself designates
> Satan. In my view, it matters that he leaves this part paradoxically spicy.
> jdf
>
>
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