Here are lines 205–224 of book II of "Paradise Regained" by John Milton:

But he whom we attempt is wiser far
Then Solomon, of more exalted mind,
Made and set wholly on the accomplishment
Of greatest things; what woman will you find,
Though of this Age the wonder and the fame,
On whom his leisure will vouchsafe an eye
Of fond desire? or should she confident,
As sitting Queen ador'd on Beauties Throne,
Descend with all her winning charms begirt
To enamour, as the Zone of Venus once
Wrought that effect on Jove, so Fables tell;
How would one look from his Majestick brow
Seated as on the top of Vertues hill,
Discount'nance her despis'd, and put to rout
All her array; her female pride deject,
Or turn to reverent awe? for Beauty stands
In the admiration only of weak minds
Led captive
; cease to admire, and all her Plumes
Fall flat and shrink into a trivial toy,
At every sudden slighting quite abasht

Belial suggests to Satan to lure Christ with a woman but Satan rebukes him and utters these lines. What I understood of this is that Satan is aware that he cannot lure Christ with a woman. But what is the exact meaning of the phrase "admiration only of weak minds led captive".


Here beauty is personified and stands for physical charm. The line suggests only weak minds are made captive by and enamored of outward beautiful appearance. Beauty can not exert any lasting impact on such an August being.The line that follows, goes to explain how it falls flat.

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