Messiah. Hebrew for anointed one; in Greek, Christos.

Andrew and Simon. Disciples of John and the first two apostles of Jesus; see John 1: 39-41 and Mark 1: 29.

Moses. His absence on Mount Sinai provoked the worship of idols; see Exodus 32.

Thisbite Elijah. His fast is mentioned in 1.353 ("Eliah"). He was carried up to heaven by a whirlwind and in a chariot of fire (2 Kings 2: 11). See also Matthew 11: 14.

Sought. After Elijah went to heaven, 2 Kings 2: 15-17 records that "fifty strong men" of the "sons of the Prophets" sought him for three days, but failed to find him.

Perea. Besides baptizing in Bethabara, John also baptized in Aenon, near Salim (John 3: 23). Milton identifies Salim with Salem, the land Melchizedek ruled (Genesis 14: 18). Machaerus was said to be the place of John the Baptist's death. Peraea names the region north-east of the Dead Sea. Genezaret is the Sea of Galilee (Luke 5: 1).

Fishermen. See Matthew 4: 18-22.

from what. The 1680 text reads "from that high hope".

full of grace and truth. This line echoes John 1: 14.

rapt. Carried off.

kings of the Earth. Refers to Acts 4: 26, which in turn quotes from Psalm 2: 1-2.

Motherly cares. Milton dramatizes an instance of motherly care not narrated in the gospels.

salute. This refers to Gabriel's annunciation to Mary as narrated in Luke 1: 28.

Murd'rous King. Herod the Great, who, according to the gospels, murdered all the male children in Bethlehem to ensure that none of them would one day usurp the throne from his dynasty. He drove Mary and Joseph to take refuge in Egypt (Matthew 2: 16).

Nazareth. A small town in Galilee where Jesus allegedly grew up.

Simeon plain fore-told. A paraphrase of Luke 2: 34-35. This is the warning mentioned in 1.255-256.

I lost him. According to the gospel, when Mary scolds young Jesus for remaining at the Temple, to discuss scripture with the Pharisees, and for worrying her and Joseph, Jesus answers, "Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business?" (Luke 2: 49).

lose. The 1680 text reads "loose."

obscures. Leaves unexplained.

sayings laid up. See Luke 2: 19.

tracing. Wandering.

preface. That is, Satan implied he would return; see 1.486-92.

vacant. At leisure, unoccupied.

blank. At a loss for words, nonplussed; see OED2.

then. This word is omitted in the 1680 text.

full frequence. Fully-attended assembly.

tasted. Tried, tested, usually in a martial sense.

Then. Used in this sense, "then" is consistantly corrected to "than" in the 1680 edition.

amplitude of mind. Magnanimity, the greatness of spirit, or megalopsychia, that Aristotle describes in Nicomachean Ethics 1123b, and the virtue of steadfastness that Cicero describes in For Sestius 60. An especially good essay on magnanimity in Aristotle and Milton is Richard Strier's "Milton Against Humility."

the old Serpent. Satan is so called in Revelation 12: 9.

Belial. The same Belial as in Paradise Lost 1.490 and 2.109-225.

Asmodai. Asmodeus, in Paradise Lost 4.168, is the lewd angel in the apocryphal Book of Tobit, whose envy of Tobit's wife, Sara, leads him to kill her seven previous spouses on their wedding nights (Tobit 3:8).

Incubus. A demon who has sex with and impregnates women while they sleep. See also OED2.

daughters of men. This recalls, but does not correspond to, Michael's story of the "daughters of men" in Paradise Lost 11.581-627.

passing fair. Asmodeus's speech here is disturbingly reminiscent of Milton's Elegy 1 (To Charles Diodati), lines 47-84.

Enerve. Unnerve, weaken.

voluptuous hope. Many poets supposed that illicit sex, or the promise of it, unnerved heroes; see, for example Ariosto's Rogero captivated by Alcina (Orlando Furioso 7.53).

Solomon. His devotion to his wives' (he was said to have 700) gods (1 Kings 11: 4) is also mentioned in Paradise Lost 1.444-446.

Sons of God. The story of "The Sons of God" from Genesis 6 has invited a wide variety of interpretations. Some commentators, following the Book of Enoch (Chapter 15), took the "Sons of God" to be angels who had lusted after women, coupled with them, and produced a race of giants. This is the interpretation Milton alludes to in Paradise Lost 5.446-448, though he expresses doubts about the veracity of this reading. In book 11, Milton seems to opt for the reading favored by many reformed commentators — that the "Sons of God" were the descendants of Seth and lived in the mountains pursuing a life of piety, learning, and special skills until they descended to the plain, "eyed" the daughters of Cain, and were forever corrupted. The offspring of these unions became the corrupt men who prompted God to flood the world. But in Paradise Regain'd, Milton opts for a different reading of Genesis 6's "Sons of God" (Paradise Lost 11.683-97). See Arnold Williams, Common Expositor.

Lines 178-189. Milton catalogues here a number of stories of human women or nymphs famous for copulating with gods, often against their will; most of them are from Ovid's Metamorphoses. Milton thus attributes these episodes to Belial. Callisto — Metamorphoses 2.409-40; Clymene — 1. 765-75; Daphne — 1.548; Antiopa — 6.110; Syrinx — 1.705; Amymone — Ovid's Amores 1.5.515; Semele — Hesiod's Theogony 940-42.

Pellean Conquerour. Alexander the Great, born at Pella in Macedonia. Plutarch, in his Alexander, tells how Alexander spared Darius's mother, daughters, and wife after he defeated the Persians at the battle of Issus.

A youth. "Youth" is capitalized in the 1680 text, and the line is indented.

hee sirnam'd of Africa. Scipio Africanus. According to Livy, he returned a beautiful captive from New Carthage, to whom he was attracted, to her lover (History of Rome 26.50).

wiser far. Refers to Jesus; see Matthew 12: 42: "behold, a greater than Solomon is here."

so Fables tell. In Iliad 14.214-218, Zeus submits to Hera's charms when she approaches him wearing Venus's girdle, which is adorned with signs of passion.

deject. To humble.

Lines 222-223. Ovid, in his Art of Love 1.627, calls the peacock the bird of Juno.

Lines 221-224. Compare the Chorus's comments on female beauty's power in Samson Agonistes 1003-1007.

not beyond. To satisfy nature's lawful desires (bodily desires) without going "beyond" sateity is close to Aristotle's definition of temperance (Nicomachean Ethics 1117b).

Without this body's wasting. Milton makes Jesus speak of the human body as something to be cared for and protected from "wasting."

my Fathers will. An echo of Jesus's words in John 4: 34: "My meat is to do the will of him that sent me."

Brook of Cherith. 1 Kings 17:5-6 describes Elijah's retreat to the brook of Cherith, where ravens brought him meat and bread. The story of the angel and the food that lasted forty days is found in 1 Kings 19:4-8.

Daniel. Daniel abstains from Nebuchadnezzar's meat in order to adhere to his diet of pulse and to avoid assimilating to Babylonian ways. His story is narrated in Daniel 1:8-19.

but a dream. Compare to other dream episodes: Paradise Lost 4.803, 5.32, 8.292, and 12.612.

bottom. Valley.

Fugitive Bond-woman. Hagar; see Genesis 21: 8-21, and Paul's allegorization of her son, Ishmael, as the non-Christian Jews in Galatians 4: 23-31. Nabaioth is the name of Ishamel's son (1 Chronicles 1: 29).

Manna. Exodus 16:35 records that the children of Israel ate manna for forty years in the wilderness of Zin until they arrived at an inhabited land.

Native of Thebez. Elijah the Thisbite; his story is above, lines 266-270.

Meats by the Law unclean. Forbidden foods specified in Leviticus 11:2-31 and Deuteronomy 14:3-20. These include the shellfish that the devil offers to Jesus. However, Milton, like most Protestants, rejected the Jewish dietary laws and ritual dietary laws in general.

Line 340. Compare to other epic banquets: Tasso's Jerusalem Delivered 10.64 in which the witch Armida tempts her lovers with an elaborate banquet, and Aeneid 3. 219.

In pastry built. That is, meat pies, common at English feasts in Milton's day.

Grisamber. Ambergris, which comes from the sperm whale. It was used to scent dishes; today to make perfumes.

Freshet. A small stream of fresh-water.

Pontus and Lucrine bay. The Black Sea and the lagoon near Naples acclaimed for its shellfish.

Cates. Comestibles.

crude. Ordinary.

Ganymede. Jove's beloved boy and cupbearer (Ovid, Metamorphoses 10. 143). Hylas was Hercules's lover, drinking companion, and quiver-bearer. He was drowned by a sea nymph. Ganynmede and Hylas are paired in Milton's Elegy 7, 21-34. Satan upbraided Belial for thinking that the Son of God could be tempted by fair women, but Satan seems eager to cover all his bets by including beautiful boys, nymphs, and women (lines 352-361).

Naiades. Nymphs of springs, rivers and streams.

Amalthea's horn. The horn of plenty. According to Ovid, a goat, which the nymph Amalthea trained to suckle baby Zeus, owned this horn (Fasti 1.155-27).

Hesperides. Hesperus's daughters. They guarded the golden apples of their father's garden. Milton uses Hesperides here, as the name of the garden. In Paradise Lost 4.250, Eden is likened to Hesperides. The Attendant Spirit in A Mask 980-981 flies to Hesperides.

Logres. England south of the Humber and east of the Severn. According to medieval romances, Lyonesse was Arthur's birthplace. It was located in western Cornwall.

Lancelot, or Pelleas, or Pellenore. In Malory's Morte D'Arthur Lancelot goes mad and sleeps with Elaine thinking she is Guenivere (11.8 and 12.5); Pelleas has an illicit affair with Ettard (4.21); and Pellinore, argues Lewalski, is a mistake for Percivale who resists temptation from a she-devil (14.9-10).

Arabian odors. Arabia was the source of perfumes, especially of the frankincense and myrrh mentioned in the Bible.

Flora. Roman goddess of flowers.

doubts. Makes hesitant; from Latin, dubitare.

Fruits. Not capitalized in the 1680 edition. Between the 1671 and 1680 texts, there are a number of differences in capitalization. In neither edition does Milton seem to even approach a standard pattern of capitalization. Thus, only variances which seem particularly interesting are noted — see, for instance, 1.122.

Defends. Prohibits.

diligence. Continuous efforts to please.

gifts no gifts. In Sophocles' Ajax 664, Ajax mentions the proverb that gifts from enemies are not true gifts.

far-fet. Fetched from afar.

Harpies wings. The scene draws upon the stage direction from The Tempest 3.3 where Ariel enters like a harpy and the banquet vanishes. The tone is similar to Virgil's Aeneid 3.225-228, in its descriptions of stripping the Trojan tables with harpies.

importune. Insistent, and perhaps, inopportune, as ever.

Money. See Mammon's praise of money and his temptation of Guyon, in Faerie Queene 2.7.3.

Antipater. Herod Antipater, appointed Procurator of Judaea by Julius Caesar; his son is Herod the Great, king of Judaea when Jesus was born. Josephus's Jewish Antiquities 14.1 records that Anitpater and his son Herod obtained power by means of their wealth.

puissant. Powerful, from French.

Get Riches. This alludes to Horace's Epistles 1.1. 53, where he ironically says, "Oh citizens, citizens, money should be the first object." It also seems to echo Iago's repeated advice to Roderigo in Othello 1.3.

Line 439. Examples of men raised up by the people. Gideon responded to God's call to rescue Israel from the Midianites by telling God that he was unworthy of the call, since his family was poor (Judges 6: 15). Jephthah, who freed Israel from the Ammonites, was the son of a prostitute (Judges 11). The Shepherd lad refers to King David, whom God called from the sheep-folds (Psalm 78: 70-71).

Line 446. Quintius Cincinnatus was called from his farm to save Rome from the Aequians' invasion. Fifteen days after Rome's victory, he resigned from his despotism and went home. Fabricius Luscinus is famous for rejecting Pyrrhus's bribes to switch sides and fight against Rome. Manius Curius Dentatus, hero of the war against the Samnites, Sabines and Pyrrhus, turned all his spoils over to the Republic. Marcus Attilius Regulus was captured by the Carthaginians and sent to Rome with conditions for peace. Regulus convinced his people to refuse the conditions. He then adhered to his promise and returned to Carthage to meet his death (Orgel & Goldberg 933).

toyl. Snare or trap.

on his shoulders. This echoes Henry V's soliloquy (Henry V 4.1.932) on the burdens of kingship. See also 2 Henry IV 3.1.31 and Richard II 3.2.160.

reigns within himself. The doctrine of self-control is biblically supported by Proverbs 15: 32, "He that ruleth his spirit [is greater] than he that taketh a city."

lay down. Renounce.