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Paradise Lost (Penguin Popular Classics) Paperback – 27 Jun 1996


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Product details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd; New edition edition (27 Jun 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140622446
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140622447
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 2 x 18 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 94,852 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Back Cover

This controversial poem of the seventeenth century centres around the creation of myth. Through his rich and powerful verse Milton relates the story of the Fall of Mankind and the subsequent banishment from Paradise.

Milton's evocative representation of Eden has become ingrained in our everyday language as he conjures up the fiery Hell and idyllic Garden, the mysterious and awe-inspiring God and cunning Satan, who decides 'Evil be thou my Good.' Eve is created as a companion for Adam, but Satan comes to her in the form of a serpent and tempts her to taste the succulent forbidden friut of the Tree of Knowledge. Thus Man's 'free will' brought about the Fall, yet Milton's God is merciful and offers Adam and Eve a paradise on earth, to come from within themselves.

Paradise Lost conveys with clarity and vision an overall vision of Creation and has deservedly become one of our greatest epics in any language.


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28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Delphi Classics on 14 Sep 2002
Format: Paperback
Milton's great epic poem was written "to justify the ways of God to men", thus telling the story of Lucifer's expulsion from Heaven and Adam's subsequent banishment from Eden. The classic representations of idyllic Eden, fiery Hell, and glorious Heaven are as rich now as when they were first created in 1667.
Paradise Lost is a very complicated, yet rewarding, Epic poem. It is by far the best of its kind in the English language, and where it lacks in original conventions, it more than makes up for it in its pure power of poetry. For those readers of translations who are unable to enjoy Homer's Greek, Virgil's Latin or Dante's Italian, Paradise Lost can offer them a unique chance to enjoy an epic poem in its original vernacular.
However, you must bear in mind that Paradise Lost is one of the most difficult pieces of poetry to read, and is by no means as simple as reading a translation of Homer or Virgil. The language is lexically dense, with complex grammar structures at times. These hurdles will be found considerably easier for experienced readers of Shakespeare, and those who are already aware of common traits of epic poetry.
Milton's use of language is majestic, boasting an impressive metre. The poem is lavished with many famous quotes that have become ingrained into everyday English, with such examples as "Pandemonium" and "All hell broke loose". Paradise Lost is, without a doubt, a must read for any intellectual English reader.
Like all epic poetry Milton's piece of art is highly indebted to Homer's conventions, with typical imitations of the Iliad's list of warriors and the Odyssey's garden of Alcinous.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Mr. S. Howie on 6 Mar 2003
Format: Paperback
Only a fool could fault this masterpiece of the English language. From its outset and conception Milton leads us on a dark and mythical journey into the swirling depths of Christian religion. Ground breaking, controversial and challenging to the reader the descriptive artistic visions at work here are unparalleled by any other poetic work. His immense knowledge of religion and mythology weave together with a full set of intense dominating character personas and a brooding lurid dreamscape. Powerful emotion is stirred up within the reader and every macabre twist and turn without relent.
The opening scene in particular paints a blood curdling portrait of sublime spiritual malevolence. The descriptive vision of Lucifer's army of fallen angels rising back to life up out of the burning lava in the torrid depths of a roaring, bleak Hell instantly seizes hold of your imagination. Onwards through the war in Heaven, the creation of the world and the devious corruption of mankind the seething blackened narrative serve only to hold the reader in absolute awe.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By C. O'DONNELL on 28 Mar 2001
Format: Paperback
This is one of those types of books that reading it is hell, but after you've read it you are so glad that you made the effort! Paradise Lost is Miltons attempt to explain the ways of God to man, by re-telling the story of Genesis in his own words. The fasinating elements start when you begin to realise that Satan is a far more sympathetic character than God, that God himself is an arrogant, jealous, unforgiving character and that the real hero turns out to be Christ, who in traditional relgious teaching doesn't even exist until the new testament! The complexities of this epic poem are huge and unreconcilable. Did the entire poem, as Milton claims, come to him in dreams? (Milton kept the whole poem in his mind, telling the story only to his granddaughter) Was he really trying to influence the minds of a country to be against the monarchy at a time of huge constitutional crisis? Why are the only two women in the poem the cause of the fall and the image of sin? Why is the Devil never punished for his part in the fall while the serpent (who is guilty of nothing) is? Or is the only reason we can ask these questions because we are ourselves fallen indivduals, and as such people who believe we have the right to question the will of God? All these questions and hundreds more make up an amazing, awe inspiring work of literature. Please make the effort, read it :)
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By Acathla TOP 500 REVIEWER on 9 July 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I can't give this any less than 5 stars as for the price, it is exactly what my daughter wanted for her school work. Due to cutbacks, even though she is at A Level they are not allowed to take the text books home anymore so I have bought her her own so that she can make notes in them and has them to hand at all time. Great quality for second hand, swift delivery and great packaging. Although I can't comment on the book (I did The Divine Comedy all those years ago) what I can comment on is the above. Superb.
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