Category Archives: Samson Agonistes

MILTON: Samson Agonistes

John Milton’s Samson Agonistes is a tragic play that was published in 1671. It retells the Biblical story of Samson, which is recounted in the Old Testament, Judges Chapters 13-16. In short, God gave extraordinary physical strength to Samson when he was born. When Samson became a man, he famously defeated an entire army with only the jawbone of a donkey. The source of Samson’s strength, however, was his hair. He told this fact to his wife Delilah, who subsequently cut off his hair and betrayed him to the Philistines, his enemies. The Philistines enslaved Samson and cut out his eyes. In despair, Samson seized his opportunity for revenge and tore down the columns that supported the Philistine Temple, killing the Philistines and himself. Continue reading MILTON: Samson Agonistes