Book 1 Questions and Answers

Study Questions
1. What is Milton’s main purpose or theme of his epic poem?

2. What is the setting of the opening scene of the poem?

3. Who is next in command to the archangel Satan?

4. What is Satan’s attitude in the beginning of the poem?

5. In what way does Milton’s enumeration of his fallen angels resemble Homer’s Iliad?

6. Who leads the fallen angels to dig for gold in Hell? Why?

7. What is the name of the temple that rose out of the ground in Hell?

8. According to Milton, what had many of the pagan gods been before the history of Man?

9. What are Milton’s basic sources for Paradise Lost?

10. What is the plan of action for the fallen angels and their leaders at the end of Book I?

Answers
1. Milton intends to “justify the ways of God to men.”

2. Satan and his angels are chained to the burning lake of fire in Hell.

3. Beelzebub is next in command to Satan.

4. Satan is sure that, in spite of his present state in Hell, he will never bow to God.

5. The list of Milton’s fallen angels is an epic convention that resembles the catalogue of ships in Homer’s Iliad.

6. Mammon leads the fallen angels to dig for gold in Hell. He wants Hell to equal Heaven in riches.

7. The temple was called Pandemonium and served as Satan’s capitol in Hell.

8. Milton states that the pagan deities had once been demons in Hell and, before their rebellion, angels in Heaven.

9. Milton uses the epic poem, emulating Homer and Virgil. He alludes to the Bible and classical literature for his subject and characterization.

10. Satan and his angels gather in his capitol, Pandemonium, to discuss what they will do to avenge God.