Sunday, October 5, 2014

War, what is it good for?


I wanted to discuss the war Milton describes in his Paradise Lost in connection with the war in Vergil’s Aeneid and their significance to the main storylines. In Paradise Lost there was a war between Lucifer, called Satan after his betrayal, and God. According to Milton, God was omniscient and so would have known that the war would happen, but did nothing to stop it. God instead let the war start, knowing that He would banish Lucifer and his followers and cause them to fall through chaos to Hell. If God had tried to stop the war in Heaven, that he knew was going to happen, then the events that unfolded in Paradise Lost would never have occurred. So the war brought the creation of a group of fallen angels that desired the corruption of whatever God created. The Aeneid uses the Trojan War in a similar way, to instigate the creation of a new group as well as a cause for the events in the book. If not for the Trojan War, then Aeneas would have never have traveled to Italy and his descendants would have never founded the Roman race. And, like in Paradise Lost, a divine being was involved in the main action. Considering that these two works are both epic poems, I am sure that other similarities can be found.

1 comment:

Iris Mire said...

In the same way that you can compare Paradise Lost and The Divine Comedy, I think you can draw some parallels between Chaucer's Canterbury Tales and The Divine Comedy. In both works the author is acting both as the author and as a narrator/character. It is important to distinguish between Dante and Chaucer the authors and Dante and Chaucer the characters.