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Paradise Lost as an Epic

  John Milton is one of the greatest poets of England. His Paradise Lost is one of the greatest epics in English language. Here the poet has maintained the classical tradition of epic writing. In fact, an epic is a long narrative poem that contains great action, great hero and great style. In Milton’s Paradise Lost one can find all these three things. According to Aristotle there are some important characteristics of an epic. Among them fable, theme, characters, machinery, episodes, integrity, sentiment and grand style are significant. Addison has also described three qualifications of an epic. These are – the fable, the entirety of action and the greatness of action. When we analyze and evaluate the Paradise Lost, we find all these characteristics in it. The fable is one of the most important elements of an epic. It is considered to be the backbone of an epic. The most important duty of an epic poet is to select a moral to illustrate and establish. In the Paradise Lost Milto