Samson Agonistes is the title of a tragedy by John Milton based on the Biblical figure of Samson. Though the categorization of tragedy suggests that the work is a play, it is not a play intended for performance, but for reading.
Samson Agonistes dramatizes the story of Samson. In its original form, the story can be found in the Book of Judges in the Bible. In both the Biblical version and Milton's drama, Samson loses his warrior strength when his hair is cut. He is made vulnerable by Dalila, a woman he loves. She persuades Samson to tell her the secret of his strength, which is his hair, and after she cuts his hair herself, she turns him over to the Philistines. They are able to subdue the great warrior completely thanks to Dalila's treachery. As well as losing his hair and his strength, Samson loses his sight when the Philistines, his captors, blind him.