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Satan a seducer (paradise lost

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Satan a seducer (paradise lost

The question, 'Satan as a seducer?' is a very different and unique angle to view his character. To some extent, he does play a role as a seducer in certain parts of Books I and II of Milton's poem, 'Paradise Lost'. Somehow he manages to make other people believe and furthermore trust in him. Deception is the most obvious weapon the Satan utilizes to persuade some of the characters in the poem. Nearly every statement he makes can be seen either as a lie or a delusion.

The first and earliest proof of Satan's achievement as being a seducer was seen in Book I, when Milton writes,

"Who first seduc'd them to that foul revolt?

Th'infernal Serpent; he it was, whose guile

Stird up with Envy and Revenge, deceiv'd

The Mother of Mankind" (Book I, 33-36).

These lines illustrate that Man's disobedience which therefore caused the loss of Paradise, where he was placed in was due to the successful attempt of the Serpent, played by Satan, to tempt Eve and, through her, Adam, to commit the Original Sin. Satan's jealousy and desire for retribution towards God drove him to seduce Eve by deceiving her.

Satan revolted from God and manages to draw to his side many Legions of Angels. Then, God drove Satan and his followers out of Heaven and into the place of utter darkness, filled with misery, called Chaos. Milton's expression of the condition of Satan's followers in this new place is, "? now they lye Groveling and prostrate on yon Lake of Fire" (Book I, 279-80). Despite this wretched place, Satan tries to revitalize their spirits by preaching,

"? Here at least

We shall be free ? we may reign secure, and in my choyce

To reign is worth ambition though in Hell" (Book I, 257-61).

He also tells them that they "Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Heav'n" (Book I, 255). This inspiring speech is directed by Satan to seduce his followers, that at the time seemed to have lost all hope in regaining happiness. Whether his remarks were true or not, he doesn't care, as long as it gives them encouragement and motivation so that they will believe him and have faith that they can gain their joy again by helping Satan go to war against God. He continues this method, trying to rebuild the spirits of his distressed and unhappy followers because he knows that he cannot fight a war with God on his own, and so he wants their support. In a way, he was sort of playing a psychological game with the 'fallen angels' by telling them good things about the dreaded place that God had sent them to. Satan's speech successfully managed to convince and comfort them with the new hope of regaining Heaven.

The part of Satan's commentary that favoured the hearts of his followers, and at the same time effectively persuaded them that they still had a chance of obtaining happiness was when he ended his speech with a profound announcement. He informed them of the New World and the new creature that would be created, "There went a fame in Heav'n that he ere long Intended to create ? plant A generation ? equal to the Sons of Heaven" (Book I, 651-5). This was their chance to retaliate by using this new Creature to fight God. Satan's idea to meddle with God's plan finally made his followers confer their miserable fall as he says,

"Our first eruption, thither or elsewhere:

For this Infernal Pit shall never hold

Caelestial Spirits in Bondage, nor th' Abyss

Long under darkness cover ? Peace is despaird,

For who can think Submission? Warr then, Warr

Open and understood must be resolv'd" (Book I, 657-62).

He was reassured of his successful attempt to seduce his followers to go to war when they responded with full of excitement, as though thunder struck on the burning Lake where they lay miserably, and awoke them all. They enthusiastically began their mission to enter war, "Millions of flaming swords, drawn from the thighs?Hurling defiance toward the vault of Heav'n" (Book I, 663-9).

Besides seeking for their lost happiness, Milton nearly always writes about rest, peace and ease, which indirectly relate to each other. The meaning of rest emerges in Book I when Hell is first described, "Regions of sorrow ? where peace And rest can never dwell, hope never comes That comes to all" (Book I, 65-7). The repetition of never, contrasts the happy eternity of Heaven, but Satan urges his followers towards the 'dready Plain' because "There rest, if any rest can harbour there" (Book I, 183-5). Satan manipulates their minds with delusions of rest, peace and ease so that they will follow him, and seek a haven from the stormy ocean.

During the consultation in Book II, Satan debates whether another battle was to be hazarded for the recovery of Heaven. He manages to help make the situation of the rebels interesting and enhances their dignity in debate so he could persuade ...

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