Milton's work is intellectually and morally challenging. To me, this is one of the loneliest passages in human literature. Painting by French artist, Natoire.
Eve has shared the fruit with Adam after the temptation by Satan in the Garden. They are shamed by God, who sends his angel to chase them from Eden. These are the closing lines of the epic poem.
In either hand the hastening Angel caught
Our lingering parents, and to the eastern gate
Led them direct, and down the cliff as fast
To the subjected plain; then disappeared.
They, looking back, all the eastern side beheld
Of Paradise, so late their happy seat,
Waved over by that flaming brand; the gate
With dreadful faces thronged, and fiery arms:
Some natural tears they dropt, but wiped them soon;
The world was all before them, where to choose
Their place of rest, and Providence their guide:
They, hand in hand, with wandering steps and slow,
Through Eden took their solitary way.