Abstract

This essay reads Milton’s Eden as a critical appropriation of Spenser’s image of the mutable world. It argues that Edenic work epitomizes Milton’s engagement with Spenser’s poetry as a site of creative origins and reveals these poets’ common vision of poetry’s virtues as inseparable from individual experiences of freely interpreting images of creation. Linking Spenserian quest’s redemptive labor with the first parents’ work in Eden, it argues that Spenser bequeaths to Milton’s poetry a broadly georgic ethos in which virtue is discovered not in our encounters with transcendent forms but rather in our movements through the postlapsarian world.

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Additional Information

ISSN
1522-9270
Print ISSN
0039-3657
Pages
pp. 175-196
Launched on MUSE
2015-03-04
Open Access
No
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