By C. S. Lewis

ISBN-10: 0195003454

ISBN-13: 9780195003451

"An crucial paintings in knowing either the literary strategy of C.S. Lewis and the theological assumptions of Paradise misplaced. unheard of in its conciseness."--I.S. Maclean, James Madison University

"Still the main lucid, important, interesting advent to Milton's poem a person has contrived to jot down. conventional literary feedback at its best."--Lance E. Wilcox, Elmhurst College

About the author
C.S. Lewis (1898-1963) used to be an Irish writer and pupil of combined Irish, English, and Welsh ancestry. Lewis is understood for his paintings on medieval literature, Christian apologetics and fiction, specifically the kids sequence entitled The Chronicles of Narnia and his technological know-how fiction area Trilogy.

A Preface to Paradise misplaced presents an interpretation of Milton's function in writing the epic.

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Sample text

Sometimes it is an infinitesimal change of language which may pass the reader's conscious mind unnoticed, but which doubtless plays its part in colouring his total experience, as when the old Aegean hatreds have slipped far enough behind for crafty Ulysses to become unfortunate Ulysses. Perhaps one of Virgil's most daring successes is the appearance of Creusa's ghost in Book u. The sad, ineffectual creature, shouldered aside by destiny, must come to prophesy the wife who will replace her and the fortunes of her husband in which she will have no share.

The ostensible philoso­ phical purpose of the poem (to justify the ways of God to Man) is here of quite secondary importance. The real function of these twenty-six lines is to give us the sensation that some great thing is now about to begin. If the poet succeeds in doing that sufficiently, we shall be clay in his hands for the rest of Book 1 and perhaps longer ; for be it noted that in this kind of poetry most of the poet's battles are won in advance. And as far as I am con­ cerned, he succeeds completely, and I think I see something of how he does it.

They got him talking and managed to kill him. Then they mixed honey with his blood and made such a mead of it that any­ body who drinks it becomes a poet. Abridgedfrom Bragaropur, LVII. In the foregoing account of Primary Epic the reader may have noticed that no mention is made of one characteristic which later critics have sometimes thought essential. Nothing has been said about greatness of subject. No doubt, the epics we have been considering do not deal with comic or idyllic matters ; but what of the epic theme as later ages have con­ ceived it-the large national or cosmic subject of super­ personal interest ?

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