By Malabika Sarkar (auth.)
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Extra info for Cosmos and Character in Paradise Lost
Milton sees himself as the privileged narrator of human history and cosmic history as well as the interpreter and prophet who can extend his understanding of that history to the contemporary world. The basic narrative components of his epic are deceit, betrayal, and “foul revolt” in the story of the fall of the angels and of man. Examining the moral, ideological, and social fabric of the seventeenth century, he is in a position to see parallels between the epic narrative and the contemporary situation.
892) of chaos with its hyperactive atoms, there is another source Milton draws upon for his depiction of chaos and Night that demands greater scrutiny as its graphic illustrations are almost replicated in Paradise Lost. This is the account of chaos in the hermetic philosophy of Robert Fludd. Although the connections between Milton and Fludd have been commented upon, the full implications of this for Milton’s depiction of chaos have not been adequately explored. The Mosaic framework that Milton constructs as a benchmark in the invocations incorporates allusions to the Mosaic tradition in seventeenth-century chemical philosophy that includes Fludd, but the borrowings from Fludd for Milton’s depiction of chaos are much more specific.
The reference to “veil” is therefore a means of indicating the polarities of empowerment and deprivation that mark the disparity of levels. 54–55) as Moses once did. INVOCATIONS 33 When one turns to Robert Fludd, a wide spectrum of meanings of light becomes apparent. While Fludd’s Mosaic chemical philosophy invested light with creative potency, he also incorporated the Brunian tradition of empowerment, and the representation of light and prophecy in his illustrations and writings is particularly relevant in this context.