Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

William J. Searle


Although much has been written on the roles of Adam and Eve created by John Milton in Paradise Lost, the critics, oddly enough, overlook the dependency created by the roles. This paper extends these roles further, explaining that Milton wanted to show that the roles of man and woman, husband and wife, combine to create a unit dependent on one another other for survival. As Adam himself states, when they are separated, husband and wife are vulnerable to the dangers of evil. However, together, they form a single unit, able to accomplish any task, epitomizing the symbolic relationship described in Ecclesiastics 4:9-12. In an attempt to restore Eve from the "temptress" label, this paper begins by looking at a couple different interpretations of The Fall. Once these interpretations have been looked at, Milton's idea of God's master plan and the role human beings' free will plays in it is explained. The major focus of the paper, a symbiotic look at the marriage between Adam and Eve, is followed by a final look at the evolution of Milton's thought on women through his divorce tracts.