Paradise Lost "To Lose Thee Were To Lose Myself"

John Milton

"To Lose Thee Were To Lose Myself"

Context: When Eve has been deceived by Satan disguised as a serpent into eating the forbidden fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, she is stimulated and intoxicated by what she has done. She wonders whether she should tell Adam of her act, as sharing the fruit with him will elevate him and remove her newly acquired superiority, and she feels great pleasure in feeling superior. She then thinks that if death actually does come upon her, as had been threatened by God and reiterated by his angels, Adam will live on in the garden in his innocence and will take to himself another Eve. She cannot stand this idea and decides that he must eat the fruit and so share her fate, whatever it will be. She approaches him and confesses what she has done; she extols the fruit highly, as it has made her feel like a god. Adam is horrorstriken at her disclosure, but his uncontrolled passion will not tolerate the idea of his living alone after her death, and therefore he will eat the fruit and share her fate. He then begins to think that God will not actually kill them, as killing them would be to uncreate what he has created. Killing Adam and Eve would be a triumph for the enemy of mankind, who would, according to Adam, say:

"Me first
He ruined, now mankind; whom will He next?"
Matter of scorn, not to be given the foe.
However, I with thee have fixed my lot,
Certain to undergo like doom, if death
Consort with thee, Death is to me as life;
So forcible within my heart I feel
The bond of nature draw me to my own,
My own in thee, for what thou art is mine;
Our state cannot be severed, we are one,
One flesh; to lose thee were to lose myself.