succeed. That is, happen next.

Relations. Narratives, the stories he has just heard from Michael.

Place. 1674 has a comma here; I have supplied a period.

bates. Abates, pauses.

wearie human sense. Adam listened intently to Raphael tell of many divine things over the course of books 5-8 without feeling the least bit weary (8.210-216). Raphael "accommodated" things beyond "human sense" to Adam's capacity (5.564-576); perhaps Michael does not offer such accomodation, or a fallen Adam is even less capable? Recall that Adam did become weary conversing with God (8.452-458).

second sours. The second source of "Men" would, of course, be Noah. (Even in Genesis, we are not told his wife's name.)

mightie Hunter. This is Nimrod, styled in Genesis 10: 9 as "a mighty hunter before the Lord." See also the Geneva glosses about Nimrod. Flavius Josephus's Antiquities 1.4.2-3 also helped establish Nimrod as tyrant and founder of Babel. See also Eikonoklastes (Complete Prose Works 3.598) where Milton regards Nimrod as the founder of monarchy.

from Heav'n claming. See excerpts from James I's The Trew Law of Free Monarchies: or, The Reciprock and Mutuall Duetie Betwixt a Free King and His Naturall Subiects (1598). See also Milton's Tenure of Kings and Magistrates for a refutation of divine right theory.

from Rebellion.   Popular etymologies of the name Nimrod incorrectly linked it to a Hebrew word for rebel.

The Plain. The Plain of Shinar; see Genesis 11.

a name. See Genesis 11: 4. Michael never mentions either Nimrod or Babel by name.

various. Inconstant, wayward, contrary; see OED2.

rase. Erase, raze.

true Libertie. See Tenure of Kings and Magistrates. See also Paradise Regain'd 3.414-440 on Israel's "patrimony" of liberty.

some fatal curse. Because Milton is celebrated as a champion of liberty, commentators often fail to recognize these lines (97-110) as the justification for "natural" or race-specific slavery that they articulate. Steven Jablonksi puts the case succinctly: "Milton, for all his hatred of tyranny and love of liberty, was opposed to the enslavement of the wrong people rather than to slavery per se" (Jablonski 188).

irreverent Son. That is, Ham (father of Canaan), Noah's youngest son, punished by God for uncovering his father's nakedness (Genesis 9: 20-27). Commentators frequently interpreted Ham as the progenitor of the Canaanites, a people cursed by God to be slaves forever (see the Geneva notes). Some believed that black Africans also descended from Ham by way of his son Cush.

one peculiar Nation. Israel; see Deuteronomy 7: 6 and 14:2.

one faithful man. Abraham; see Genesis 17: 5.

Bred up in Idol-worship. See Joshua 24:2.

call by Vision. The narrative of Abraham's call is found in Genesis 11 and 12.

believes. Hebrews 11: 8 insists that Abraham was blessed by God because of his faith. So also did Paul in Romans 4:1-3. Paul and others tried hard to reinterpret Abraham as a figure of faith rather than just a chosen patriarch; it is also, for Paul, partly an attempt to re-define the identity, "son of Abraham" as a matter of belief rather than genetics, so that Christian gentiles can be defined as the "true" Israel and the "apostate" Jews as "cast out" (Galatians 3-4). But see also Daniel Boyarin's A Radical Jew and John G. Gager's The Origins of Anti-semitism.

servitude. That is, a large train of servants.

Moreh. See Genesis 12: 6.

Senir. The Geneva glosses identify Shenir as Mount Hermon. See also Deuteronomy 3:9 and 1 Chronicles 5:23.

Lines 139-146. The description of the boundaries of the "promised land" is found in Numbers 34: 1-12.

that Seed. Here Milton, like most Christian interpreters of the Bible, identifies the promise made to Abraham in Genesis 12: 1-3 with the curse pronounced on the serpent in Genesis 3: 15 and the supposedly messianic prophecies of, say, Daniel 7. All these, claims Milton, denote the first and final comings of Jesus Christ. In this way, the entire Hebrew Bible was routinely re-interpreted as an explicitly Christian document.

Grand-childe. The "Son" is Isaac (Genesis 17-18, 22, 24-25) and the grandchild Jacob (Genesis 25-50).

twelve Sons. The twelve sons of Jacob (renamed Israel in Genesis 35: 10) are the patriarchs of the twelve tribes of Israel (Genesis 35: 22-26).

seaven mouthes. Virgil's Aeneid 6. 800 speaks of the Nile as seven-gated.

yonger Son. That is, Joseph, Jacob's next-to-youngest son; see Genesis 42-47.

sequent King. A later Pharaoh; see Exodus 1: 8 and the chapters that follow.

kills thir infant Males. See Exodus 1: 15-16. For a comparison between Pharaoh and Charles I, see Eikonoklastes.

Signes and Judgements dire. For the story of the ten plagues, see Exodus 7-15.

Murren. Murrain or hoof-and-mouth disease.

Botches and blaines. Botches are swellings or infected pimples; blains are blisters or boils.

River-dragon. That is, Pharaoh; see Ezekiel 29: 3.

sojourners. The Israelites were not Egyptians, but sojourners in the land of Egypt; Pharaoh made them slaves.

christal walls. The story is in Exodus 14, but Milton's diction recalls his translation of Psalm 136:49-50.

present in his Angel. That is, God does not present himself to Moses as he once did to Adam (8.295ff), but as here and in book 11, is only present "in his angel," Michael; see Exodus 33: 2-4.

Lines 201-204. See Exodus 13: 21. The obdurate (hard-hearted) king is Pharaoh.

craze. Crack, shatter; but see Exodus 14.

thir Warr. Their Army.

Race elect. That is, the "children" of Israel, or the Israelites. The word is only beginning to have the full sense it acquires in 19th-century racialist discourse. See OED2: "The offspring or posterity of a person; a set of children or descendants."

Lines 215-222. Milton's complicated syntax appears basically to render the explanation in Exodus 13: 17-18, with perhaps the added suggestion that martial training not only makes one ready for the challenge of battle, but also changes one's basic attitudes toward life.

thir delay. That is, the forty years in the desert.

great Senate. Moses, Aaron, and the seventy elders that constituted their political and religious organization. See Exodus 24: 1-9 and Numbers 11: 16-30.

shadowes. For accurate and full, but uncritical, accounts of Puritan notions of typology, see William G. Madsen, From Shadowy Types to Truth or Barbara K. Lewalski, Protestant Poetics. For a critical account, see Luxon, Literal Figures.

dreadful. See Exodus 20: 19.

Messiah. Following Hebrews 8, Milton subscribes to the familiar Christian notion that Moses prefigures Jesus Christ and that the Israelites are a type or allegorical figure for Christians, the "true" people of God.

Tabernacle. The holiest of Hebrew shrines. See Exodus 33: 9, and for an account of its building, Exodus 25-27. Evangelical Christians have a special fascination with the tabernacle and have built clever reconstructions following the Exodus accounts. The Geneva Bible glossed "shittim wood" of Exodus 25:5 as "a kindred of cedar."

Seaven Lamps. The seven-branched candlestick or menorah was interpreted by Flavius Josephus in Antiquities 3.6.7 as symbolizing the seven planets.

stand still. See Joshua 10: 12-14.

Israel. Jacob, son of Isaac, son of Abraham (originally Abram). See Genesis 32: 28.

evince. Make apparent.

pravitie. Depravity.

Lines 287-299. Milton makes Michael speak in specifically Pauline terms about law, sin, and justification; one might even say the terms reflect a specifically reformation understanding of the Pauline terms and concepts. See Romans 3 and Romans 7 and the Geneva glosses on Romans 3 and Romans 7. As with the tabernacle and the figure of Moses, the Hebrew law is interpreted as a shadowy prefiguration of Christian truth. Also see Martin Luther's Preface to Romans.

a better Cov'nant. Again, Milton's familiar Christian cooptative allegorization of Hebrew law, worship, and even history follows the pattern outlined in Hebrews 8.

shadowie Types to Truth. The key phrase for typology, which is a Protestant version of allegory whereby historical events are taken to be allegories of later, usually apocalyptic, events. For accurate, but uncritical, accounts of Puritan notions of typology, see William G. Madsen, From Shadowy Types to Truth or Barbara K. Lewalski, Protestant Poetics. For a critical account, see Luxon, Literal Figures.

earthly Canaan. Like almost all Christian commentators, Milton regards the "promised land" of Canaan but an "earthly" figure for the "true" promised land of the Christian "Kingdom of Heaven." It is easy to see how Christianity breeds a persistent anti-Jewish strain from this supersessionist allegory of the Jews as "shadowy types" of Christians, a strain usually explained by Miltonists without any hint of distaste.

Judges first. Ancient Israel was ruled first by judges (see Judges and 1 and 2 Samuel), then by Kings (1 Kings and 2 Kings). Saul was Israel's first King (1 Samuel 9: 15-10:9).

the Womans Seed. Two gospel accounts trace Jesus's lineage to or from David; see Matthew 1 and Luke 3: 23-38.

next Son. Solomon, third king of Israel. See 1 Kings 5-8 and 2 Chronicles 2-5.

Babylon. Like most commentators, Milton believed Babel was somehow the precursor of the Babylonian Empire which, under Nebuchadnezzar, led Israel and its kings captive. See 2 Chronicles 36, Jeremiah 50, and Daniel.

re-edifie. See Ezra 1.

among the Priests. Milton first achieved fame writing against prelacy, that is against forms of church government based on bishops and archbishops (prelates). He believed that particular ecclesiastical structure was bound to lead to corruption. See The Reason of Church Government Urged Against Prelaty (1642).

stranger. Antipater the Idumean, Roman-appointed governor of Jerusalem from 61 BCE and Procurator of Judaea (appointed by Julius Caesar) from 47 BCE. His son was Herod the Great, Roman-approved tetrarch of Judaea. See Josephus, Antiquites 14.8.5 and Matthew 2 and Luke 2.

Eastern Sages. The so-called Wise men; see Matthew 2: 11.

Lines 364-367. See Luke 2.

Power of the most High. See Luke 1: 35.

Virgin Mother, Haile. See Luke 1: 31-35. See also 5.385-389 when Raphael greets Eve.

capital. On the head, as in capitalis, Latin for "on the head."

his works. See 1 John 3: 8.

appaid. Satisfied, paid up in full. See OED2.

by obedience and by love. See Romans 13.

naild to the Cross. See William Blake's 1808 watercolor illustration of these lines.

By his own Nation. Here Milton participates in one of the more persistent anti-Jewish slurs in his day, that Jews, not Romans, nailed Jesus to the cross. This slur is based in part on passages like Luke 23: 13-24 and John 19: 12-18. See also Mark 15: 6-25. Flannagan (1998) glosses this passage as follows: "there is no evidence in Milton's works that he condemned Jews for having allowed the Crucifixion." This very passage seems evidence enough to me, though many Miltonists remain loath to recognize it as such. For a good history of anti-Jewish attitudes in church history, see James Carroll, Constantine's Sword.

Starres of Morn. The phrase echoes to Job 38: 7.

thir stings. The imagery comes from 1 Corinthians 15: 55.

temporal death. Death in time, or temporary. As a mortalist, Milton believed that both body and soul died temporarily and were both resurrected together in judgment.

profluent streame. Maurice Kelley, in the Yale Complete Prose (6.544.n6) explains: Milton's position on this sacrament [baptism] may be described as Socinian-Anabaptist immersionism (complete immersion of the baptized person's body), with the further stipulation that the rite must be performed in running water," presumably like a river.

Sons/ Of Abrahams Faith. The Sons of Abraham's faith, as opposed to sons of Abraham's loins, would be Gentiles converted to Christianity, as opposed to Jews by birth. Paul argued that Christian Gentiles were more truly sons of Abraham than unconverted Jews. See Galatians 3:7. Traditional anti-semitism has its roots in such arguments.

Prince of aire. The Geneva glosses to Ephesians 2:2, identify "the prince of the power of the air" as Satan.

drag in Chaines. See Revelation 20 and book 1.48.

quick and dead. See 2 Timothy 4:1 .

Whether in Heav'n or Earth. Will the faithful be rewarded with bliss in a new earth or in heaven? See the Geneva comments on Revelation 21:1.

grace shall abound. The phrase echoes Romans 5: 20.

Comforter. See John 15: 26.

spiritual Armour. See Ephesians 6: 11-17 and Spenser's Redcrosse Knight in The Faerie Queene 1.

Powrd first. Pentecost, Acts 2.

race well run. The phrase echoes 1 Corinthians 9: 24-26. See also Areopagitica.

grievous Wolves. See Acts 20: 29 and "Lycidas" 128.

lucre. See 1 Peter 5:2.

Infallible. Even though the doctrine of the papal infallibility was not made official church dogma until 1870, it was all-but-official doctrine in the Roman Catholic Church of Milton's day. See The Catholic Encyclopedia's article on Infallibility. See also Milton's A Treatise on Civil Power (Complete Prose Works 7.248).

Spirit and Truth. See John 4: 23.

Well. 1667 has "Will" here.

groaning. The phrase echoes Romans 8: 22.

feare. See Psalm 111: 10.

Merciful. Psalm 145: 9.

overcoming evil. Romans 12: 21.

worldly strong. 1 Corinthians 1: 27.

suffering for Truths sake. Heroic martyrdom is one of Milton's predominant themes; see 9.31-33 and Paradise Regain'd 1.426 and Samson Agonistes 654.

Acknowledge. Thus Milton makes Adam a proleptic Christian as the supercessionist tradition did so many Hebrew patriarchs and prophets, the most famous being, perhaps, Daniel. See also Robert Lerner's study of medieval millenarianism, The Feast of Abraham.

Lines 582-583. 2 Peter 1: 5-7.

wak't. Even though the "Argument" above indicates that Adam wakes Eve.

Lines 621-623. Speaking precisely, Adam has not been banished for Eve's crime, nor has all been lost through her transgression, nor shall the "Promis'd Seed" restore all by her. Milton presents Eve as having the gist of the matter, but not the precise details. It's as if Milton puts the first misogynistic overstatements of Eve's crime in Eve's own mouth, as well as the first inaccurate pseudo-feminist assessments of Eve.

marish. Marsh.

adust. Scorched.

the hastning Angel. See William Blake's 1808 watercolor illustration of these lines.