Monday, November 06, 2006

Terrance Lindall: John Milton's Paradise lost

"hideous ruine and combustion" (PL 1.46)
Terrance Lindall, John Milton's Paradise Lost:
Synopsized and with illustrations (1982)

Through no fault of my own, I recently discovered that the Heavy Metal illustrator Terrance Lindall published a number of illustrations in 1982 as homage to Paradise Lost, one of which you see above and several of which you can see online at the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center's Gallery, which had a Terrance Lindall Retrospective some years back (May 13-June 11, 2000) and which still maintains some of these images online (though a couple seem to be missing).

Noted art critic Leo Steinberg calls Lindall "a latter day Bosch," which looks quite apt to me.

I didn't know much about Lindall, but the Wikipedia article makes him sound like an interesting person, with a background in philosophy among other things ... but I'll leave that Wiki reading up to you.

For an appropriately diabolical image of Lindall, go here.

For other illustrations to accompany your reading of Milton's epic poem, go to Donald I. Ulin's Paradise Lost Illustrated, which has images by William Blake as well as links to images that George Klawitter has collected showing Miltonic illustrations by Gustave Doré, John Martin, John B. Medina, Edward Burney, Richard Westall, and Francis Hayman. Unlinked by Ulin but also available at Klawitter are Bernard Lens and Henry Fuseli.

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At 8:06 AM, Blogger Conservative in Virginia said...

HJH, don't have a heart attack, but for those of us who may never make it through Paradise Lost, do you have a recommendation for a summary? Perhaps one that might even inspire further reading?

I borrowed a copy from the library last summer, but chickened out (or maybe was just too lazy) when I realized how difficult the reading would be. (I gave up partway through Faust, too, so maybe I'm not cut out for heavy reading, not to mention heavy metal artists.)

At 12:16 PM, Blogger Ben Myers said...

John Hale has produced a very entertaining 12-minute version of Paradise Lost, with additional notes on how to read it aloud. It’s available online here

At 1:51 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Roy Flannagan did the Cliff's Notes for PL, and it's great. RF also has a thin book introducing Milton from Blackwell publishers, I think it is. RF, of course, is the editor of The Riverside Milton.

jesse swan

At 3:49 AM, Blogger Alcuin Bramerton said...

One does not need illustrations to accompany one's reading of Milton. One needs a sickbag. He tries to chew too much too fast. Buccal egestion is the only comfortable reader-response.

At 4:25 AM, Blogger A.H. said...

Interesting to see the history of Milton illustrations. Thanks for collecting them all together. Lindall is too melodramatic for my taste. If I had to favout any illustrator, I think it would be Blake. But would JM, the Puritan, have approved of illustration?

At 4:36 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Alcuin Bramerton, I'll ruminate on your words.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 4:43 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Eshuneutics, good question about Milton the Puritan and his view of images.

Milton was a rather unorthodox Puritan and uses his words in ways that depict scenes for us to see.

I seem to recall that some scholars have worked on Milton's debt to pictorial art, but I haven't read much in that myself.

I suspect that Milton would not mind, in principle, but that he'd probably object to many of the actual depictions.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 4:45 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

CIV, I hope that Ben and Jesse have provided you with some useful suggestions.

Speaking of which, thanks to Ben and Jesse for the help on this query.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 6:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The best very short version of Paradise Lost is Lindall's version, now out of print. It was meant to introduce PL to the uninitiated with notable Miltonian phrases and strong imagery. Lindall recites PL annually at the Williamsburg Art & Historical Center, He owns Charles Lamb's copy of PL (1688 & 1695), which is the first illustrated edition. John Meyers, Minnesota

At 7:29 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Anonymous -- or are you John Meyers of Minnesota? -- thanks for the additional information, which is interesting and useful to know.

Jeffery Hodges

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At 10:47 PM, Blogger beinArt said... Interview with Terrance Lindall

At 6:28 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

BeinArt, thanks for the link and the interesting interview.

Jeffery Hodges

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