Paradise Lost Book 9: Line 542-548 - Summary

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      Satan begins his campaign of seducing Eve by appealing to her vanity and self-importance. He pretends that he came to offer worship to her matchless beauty because his newly acquired rational faculty convinced him that she was the most beautiful of all the creations of God. He asserts that no one could behold her without being overwhelmed.

      Satan proves himself very clever in flattering Eve’s vanity through appealing half-truths. He calls Paradise a wild enclosure though he himself had been greatly changed by its delights. He plays on Eve’s vanity by remarking that it is a pity that her glorious beauty should be seen only by rude animals who cannot appreciate her. Adam is the only man who can appreciate her beauty and thus her beauty is wasted.

      He further tells Eve that she is like a Goddess and deserves to be among Gods and angels. Numerous angels should form her daily train and Serve and wait upon her. Satan thus, is here a clever flatterer. And Eve’s tacit acceptance of this praise makes her already guilty of the sin of vanity and paves the way for her eventual fall.

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