This essay Samson Agonistes has a total of 2123 words and 8 pages.
In John Milton's works, specifically Samson Agonistes, we get an idea of how Milton shows people coping with defeat. The most evident way these people to choose to deal with their defeat is by questioning why this has to happen. Which usually leads to what is the purpose of living if bad things are going to take place. Friends or family members also usually come to the aid of the person trying to cope with the defeat to help them realize that this is not the end. After time of grieving their defeat and talking about it, the person suffering finds a way to go on. In Samson Agonistes, Milton gave expression to his own fate--the splendid promise of a religious and dedicated youth, and the tragic close in blind and forsaken rage, a witness to the triumph of the Philistine foe (Worlds Best Poetry).
The character in Samson Agonistes was once, "Heroic renowned/, Whom unarmed no strength of man/, Or fiercest wild beast could withstand" (125-127 Samson), is no longer that feared that man. Instead he is a prisoner of his enemies chained and blinded by them, deceived by his own wife. After a life of such heroic activity Samson begins to question why him. His thoughts swarm upon him like a deadly swarm of hornets armed, no sooner found alone, but rush upon him thronging, and present times past, what he once was, and what he is now. He is really struggling with his current life wanting to know why his breeding was ordered as a person separate to God. Samson lays all the blame on himself saying how impotent his mind was in a body so strong. God gave him the strength to show everyone but the gift was so slight he hung it in his hair. After debating with himself about his life he turns to his loss of sight. "O loss of sight, of thee I most complain!" (67 Samson). Samson see his lost of sight in the worse way being that he viewed it so highly. He believes that light is the prime work of god and since that light is so necessary to life he is living a life half dead. Again Samson begins to question, "why was the sight to such a tender ball as th' eye confined? If light was so precious why would it be exposed and so easy to be destroyed. Samson considers death a privilege because he would be buried and relieved of all his pains and wrongs. We see the same kind of questioning why in Milton's, Lycidas.
In Lycidas, however the person suffering defeat is one that is mourning a friend. Just like in Samson Agonistes the speaker can't believe this has have to his friend. The speaker wants to know, "Where were ye nymphs when the remorseless deep/, Closed o'er the head of your loved Lycidas?" (50-51 Lycidas). We see that Milton likes to question why when dealing with defeat in his works.
Samson friends who were referred to as the chorus comes to change his thoughts, or beliefs. At first they cant even belief that this is that great heroic man, looking at him now and recalling how great he once was. Just like Samson they cannot believe that this has happened to him. Before even confronting Samson they don't even where to start to offer him condolences stating: "Which shall I first bewail, Thy bondage or lost sight" (151-152 Samson). They come as friends to visit or bewail Samson or if better to counsel or to bring any consolation they can to his troubled mind. Visiting Samson revived him a little because when he was great he had lots of friends who would swarm upon him. Now that he is weak no friends are around or anywhere to be found. Samson tells the Chorus that the one thing that drove him sideways the fact that his wife deceived him. The Chorus responds by telling him that, "Tax not divine disposal/, wiset men have erred, and by bad women been deceived/; and shall again, pretend they ne'er so wise." (210-212 Samson) The Chorus and Samson begin to talk about why Samson chose his wife and how he is considered a Saint, after which Samson's father arrives, Manoa.
Manoa asks the Chorus if their once gloried friend dwells here. As a response they state that, "As
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