Sexual Fables

This article accompanies the fable
The Age of Consent


William Blake's Satan Watching the Caresses of Adam and Eve


William Blake Satan Watching the Caresses of Adam and Eve

Another illustration for Paradise Lost, the question is: is Eve really looking at Satan?

Blake was remarkable for his then-radical ideas about “sexualized spirituality” and he belonged to a similarly-minded community of New Age free-thinkers.  A debate now rages over just how weird it all got and the nature of the influences acting upon Blake: Swedenborg, the Moravian Church, the Kabbalists, Tantric yoga and so on.  At any rate, his executor and his descendants had to cover up erect penises and other dangerous objects in Blake’s illustrations, some of which have been restored to their original glory but which do not appear in any public art galleries.  Early on in their marriage, when Blake and his wife Catherine were unable to have children, Blake suggested bringing in a concubine, but she was not enthusiastic and he dropped the idea.

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