This is the annotated and illustrated edition, containing a detailed biographical essay on the author as well as a wealth of beautiful illustrations by William Blake.
Paradise Lost is an epic poem in twelve books, in English heroic verse without rhyme, by John Milton (C. P. P.) and was published in 1667. The subject is the fall of man, and the expulsion from Paradise.
Book I. Satan arouses his legions, still suffering from their expulsion from heaven, tells them of an ancient prophecy of a new world and a new race to be created, and summons a general council, to meet at Pandemonium, his capital, to confer on the subject. Book II. At the council it is resolved not to hazard another battle for the recovery of heaven but to search for the prophesied new world. Satan undertakes to ¿nd it alone. Book III. The Almighty sees Satan flying through space, confers with the Son, foretells the fall, and arranges the scheme of redemption. Meanwhile Satan alights on the world. Book IV. Satan enters Eden and overhears Adam and Eve talking about the tree of knowledge, of the fruit of which they are forbidden to eat under penalty of death, and determines to make them transgress. Book V. The Almighty sends Raphael to warn Adam against Satan. Book VI. Raphael tells of the war in heaven and of the defeat and expulsion of the rebel angels. Book VII. Raphael relates how and why the world was created. Book VIII. Adam tells Raphael what he knows of his own creation and of his nuptials with Eve. Book IX. After Raphael's departure Satan takes the form of a serpent, and finding Eve alone tells her that he has acquired both the power of speech and wisdom by eating the fruit of the forbidden tree. Eve, whose curiosity is aroused, tastes the fruit and at last takes some to Adam and persuades him also to eat. The eyes of both are opened, and they accuse each other. Book X. Satan returns to Pandemonium and relates the success of his mission. Book XI. The Almighty sends Michael back with a band of cherubim to drive them from Paradise. Michael shows Adam a vision of events to the Flood. Book XII. Michael relates events after the Flood, and tells of the incarnation, death, resurrection, and ascension. He then leads the pair out of Eden, the fiery sword waving behind them, and the Cherubim take their stations to guard the gate. Thus Paradise is lost.