Satan As A Figure Of Heroism In Milton's Paradise Lost

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When reading an epic poem, one is continuously examining the work as the reader progresses through each book and as new characters are encountered. Although Satan is controversial character in this epic, Satan can be considered as a figure of heroism in Paradise Lost. One may be under the impression that Milton makes Satan appear heroic and appealing early in the epic to gain the reader’s sympathy. Milton manipulates empathy in his reader to convince the reader’s how seductive evil is and to teach the reader become more vigilant. In Paradise Lost, Milton uses Satan’s strength, ambition, leadership, and pride as his tragic flaw to establish his status of an epic hero. In Paradise Lost, the reader is given an idea of Satan’s physical…show more content…
Satan feels compelled to please the demons and stand up for what he believes is right. Not only does Satan show leadership within his society, but within himself. Satan has not hindered he knew he would be eternally damned to hell and approached by chaos and death. Steadman said this about leadership, “The process of moral self- determination—the driving urge toward self- definition that we normally recognize in the heroes of Homeric epic—is equally operative in Milton’s Satan, yet this very preoccupation with self, along with the craving for domination and the hunger for glory, forms the cornerstone of the infernal city. The Satanic image, as Milton presents it, is the devil’s own creation.” (Steadman) Every epic hero has a tragic flaw, in Satan circumstances his tragic flaw was pride. Throughout the end of the epic Satan steadily loses his heroic qualities; Satan’s heroic deeds were rooted in sin. Hughes makes the valid point by referring to the Greek was thinking proving Satan heroic pride, “If we look at Satan from Hellenic point of view, he is heroic, and, I take it, it is from this point of view that the Romantics looked at him.” (Hughes) One of the main rationale for Satan’s pride is he believes he possess more power than God. Satan assumes that his army is superior to Heaven’s. Satan’s army is half the size of what is in Heaven and that they can take over…show more content…
Satan assumes that an army as brawny as his should have never fallen to God’s army. Satan’s pride blinds him to the point that he does not realize that God can easily defeat such an army, even though they "stood" like “gods.” “How such united force of gods, how such As stood like these, could ever know repulse?” (1.629-30). Satan’s army is half the size of what is in Heaven and they believe that they can take over heaven. Satan is under the impression that he knows what is best for all the angels. Satan believes that he is superior to God. When Satan was in Eden in the form of a toad whispering a dream in Eve’s ear; Satan believes that God is not knowledgable of what he is doing. The same circumstances apply to when Satan is in Eden talking to Eve at the tree of knowledge of good and
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