, published in May 1708 when he was twenty-three years old, was John Gay's first published poem. It is a Miltonic parody, of 278 lines, in the style of John Philips's (1676-1708)

Splendid Shilling

, which had been published seven years earlier in 1701. Gay parodies Milton's epic style as a witty game, or elaborate literary joke, for those in the know. The reader is expected to recognise the allusions to

Paradise Lost

and enjoy the comic application of a high Miltonic style to low subject matter. Gay flaunts his credentials as a poet, showing he is widely read in earlier poetry and has the verbal and metrical skill to re-create Milton's inverted, blank verse, epic style.

Gay ironically invokes Milton's “Heavenly Muse” to help him praise the sparkling juices of th' enlivening grape,

478 words

Citation: Gordon, Ian. "Wine". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 02 March 2004 [, accessed 21 May 2024.]

8810 Wine 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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