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Paradise Lost

John Milton

Key Facts

Important Quotations Explained

Study Questions & Essay Topics

full title  ·  Paradise Lost

author  · John Milton

type of work  · Poem

genre  · Epic

language  · English

time and place written  ·  16561674; England

date of first publication  · First Edition (ten books), 1667; Second Edition (twelve books), 1674

publisher  · S. Simmons, England

narrator  · Milton

point of view  · Third person

tone  · Lofty; formal; tragic

tense  · Present

setting (time)  · Before the beginning of time

setting (place)  · Hell, Chaos and Night, Heaven, Earth (Paradise, the Garden of Eden)

protagonist  · Adam and Eve

major conflict  · Satan, already damned to Hell, undertakes to corrupt God’s new, beloved creation, humankind.

rising action  · The angels battle in Heaven; Satan and the rebel angels fall to Hell; God creates the universe; Satan plots to corrupt God’s human creation; God creates Eve to be Adam’s companion; Raphael answers Adam’s questions and warns him of Satan

climax  · Adam and Eve eat the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge.

falling action  · The Son inflicts punishment; Adam and Eve repent; Adam learns about the future of man

themes  · The Importance of Obedience to God; The Hierarchical Nature of the Universe; The Fall as Partly Fortunate

motifs  · Light and Dark; The Geography of the Universe; Conversation and Contemplation

symbols  · The Scales in the Sky; Adam’s wreath

foreshadowing  · Eve’s vanity at seeing her reflection in the lake; Satan’s transformation into a snake and his final punishment

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just wow

by jimmypagesscarf, September 03, 2013

This is it.... this is what sends us all to Hel....


4 out of 25 people found this helpful


by Astori, April 21, 2014

I agree with most of the explanation and analysis above. But one thing else to be added is that a hero doesn't bear evil intentions ever, otherwise there would be no difference between a protagonist and an antagonist.


3 out of 8 people found this helpful

Q. Consider 'Paradise Lost' as an Epic.

by touhidsm, April 22, 2014

Q. What qualities of an epic do you find in 'Paradise Lost'?

Ans: Paradise Lost is one of the finest examples of epic tradition in all of literature. Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton. It was originally published in 1667 (though written nearly ten years earlier) in ten books, with a total of over ten thousand individual lines of verse.
Read the full answer at


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