[ilds] Durrell and Milton

Charles Sligh Charles-Sligh at utc.edu
Thu Apr 8 12:24:07 PDT 2010

G. R. Taneja wrote:
>         I was wondering if there is an indication of Durrell’s
>         interest in Milton which can be easily accessed. 

Beyond the mentions of Milton in Durrell's /Key to Modern British Poetry 
/and in the intro to the Penguin /Wordsworth/, I cannot help thinking 
here of the storied voyages of the HMS Milton and "her boys"--cf. 
/Balthazar/, /Clea/, /Constance/, /Sebastian, /&c. That series alone 
shows Durrell making a sustained, if highly ironic, meditation on his 
epic precursor.

In addition, see for example "The Sirens":

>         Every poet and hero has to face them,
>         The glittering temptresses of his distraction,
>         The penalties which seek him for a hostage.
>         Homer and Milton: both were punished in their gift.

But also check the annotations to the new ELS editions of /Pied Piper of 
Lovers/ and /Panic Spring/. There are several interesting Miltonic 
allusions glossed by the editor there.


Charles L. Sligh
Assistant Professor
Department of English
University of Tennessee at Chattanooga
charles-sligh at utc.edu

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