The Bible

Milton and His Readers: Interpreting Interpretations of the Bible College

John Milton has a very distinct way of interpreting the Bible; he molds the story of the Bible into a rich and imaginative narrative story. The story reads like a legend or fairytale but rather than provoking the mind of the reader, it actually has fewer interpretive opportunities than the Bible itself. Through various interpretive claims and strategies, Milton writes his own story of the Bible and shares it with the world to make of it what they will. The differences between the interpretive leeway the Bible gives the reader versus Milton’s Paradise Lost allows the reader to examine the patterns of thought Milton considered when developing his ideas.

Milton lived in a time that was tumultuous in terms of religion; England turned over its monarchy from the Tudors to the Stuarts to Cromwell. The amount of religious freedom varied during this time, so Milton and all of Great Britain’s society probably had to develop fairly strong individual opinions on the matter so they would not fall subject to the wavering public ideology that came with Christianity. Milton interprets the Bible in a very specific way that correlates well with the idea of time period views. In fact, he adds on to the Bible, giving it a backstory unique to...

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