7 Mar 2021

MA English Part.1 Paradise Lost The Scene of temptation


Scene of Temptation in Paradise Lost

In Paradise Lost book.IX, there is a temptation scene. In it, Satan tempted Eve, the mother of mankind to eat the fruit of that forbidden tree, the tree of knowledge. This scene projects the main theme of this epic: the theme of disobedience of man.

“Of Man s’ first disobedience, and the fruit

Of that forbidden tree, whose mortal taste

Brought death into the world, and all our woe

With loss of Eden….”


It means before this violation, Adam and Eve were leading a life full of heavenly joys and pleasures and they were immortal. If they did not violate the restriction of God, they lived happily in the Heaven forever. But there was a trial for our grand ancestors. They were tempted by serpent and violated the command of their creator and thus lost Heaven.

The structure of the whole poem culminates at the fall of Eve and Adam. Main source of the temptation was taken from the Bible. But Milton fills it with his dramatic artistic skills as per the requirement of an epic poem. The following lines reflect this cosmic tragedy.


“So saying, her rash hand in evil hour forth reaching to

The fruit she plucked, she eats it, Earth felt the wound

And nature from her seat sighing through all her works

Gave signs of woe, that all was lost…..”


Adam and eve, the humans’ grand parents were living happily in Eden, the state of nature. There they were passing a simple life and were busy in their day to day life. They went about the garden of Eden tending flowers, preparing beds for sowing seeds, weeding the plants and looking after the branches of plants and trees.


They loved each other and their love was full of purity, not physically one. They had no grief, no woe and were immortal. In Eden, they were allowed to enjoy all things except one restriction and that was not to eat the fruit of that forbidden tree. Satan called it the tree of knowledge. Critics and analysts say that the mentioned tree was devoid of such qualities but it was to examine the obedience of Adam and Eve.


Satan filled with revenge, guised into a serpent and tempted the mother of mankind. He found this chance, when Eve, all alone was busy in looking after the plants. Satan approaches Eve and flattered her and started praising her beauty. Eve was amazed to find serpent speaking. Serpent tells her that it was the effect of eating the fruit of that tree of knowledge. Eve, after tempted fully eats the fruit of that forbidden tree. Later she tempted Adam to eat that fruit. Both transgressed the will of God and thus they lost Heaven.



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