The Prose Works of John Milton

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Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2009 - 294 pages
Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: TRACTS ON THE COMMONWEALTH. Editor's Preliminary Remarks. During the confusion and disorders of the year 1659, when, after the death of Cromwell, notwithstanding a republican majority in the parliament, the partisans of the Stuarts, in conjunction with the dregs of the populace, clamoured for the restoration of the exiled family, Milton, inspired with shame and indignation by the relapse of his countrymen, or a large portion of them et least, into their old passion for servitude, composed the following pieces, in which he warns the nation against their fatal error, foretells the evils they would inevitably bring upon themselves, and to which they should see no end, but by undoing what they were now so eager to accomplish. His prophecy was fulfilled to the letter; and, after a disgraceful interval of twenty- eight years, the Stuarts, together with the doctrines of the divine right of kings and passive obedience, were finally banished together from these realms in 1688. The first of these tracts, Dr. Symmons observes, was first published by Toland, and is well worthy of the reader's attention. After an interval of a few months, he inscribed to Monk, who now seemed to command the issue of things, his ' Mode of Establishing a Commonwealth;' a piece intended rather to expose the evils necessarily consequent to the nation's relapse into its old vassalage under kings, and to demonstrate the preference of a republican to a monarchical government, than to propose any just model of a popular constitution. LETTER TO A FRIEND COKCEBHIHG THE RUPTURES OF THE COMMONWEALTH. Sir, ?Upon the sad and serious discourse which we fell into last night, concerning these dangerous ruptures of the commonwealth, scarce yet in her infancy, which cannot be without some inward flaw in her bo...

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About the author (2009)

John Milton, English scholar and classical poet, is one of the major figures of Western literature. He was born in 1608 into a prosperous London family. By the age of 17, he was proficient in Latin, Greek, and Hebrew. Milton attended Cambridge University, earning a B.A. and an M.A. before secluding himself for five years to read, write and study on his own. It is believed that Milton read evertything that had been published in Latin, Greek, and English. He was considered one of the most educated men of his time. Milton also had a reputation as a radical. After his own wife left him early in their marriage, Milton published an unpopular treatise supporting divorce in the case of incompatibility. Milton was also a vocal supporter of Oliver Cromwell and worked for him. Milton's first work, Lycidas, an elegy on the death of a classmate, was published in 1632, and he had numerous works published in the ensuing years, including Pastoral and Areopagitica. His Christian epic poem, Paradise Lost, which traced humanity's fall from divine grace, appeared in 1667, assuring his place as one of the finest non-dramatic poet of the Renaissance Age. Milton went blind at the age of 43 from the incredible strain he placed on his eyes. Amazingly, Paradise Lost and his other major works, Paradise Regained and Samson Agonistes, were composed after the lost of his sight. These major works were painstakingly and slowly dictated to secretaries. John Milton died in 1674.

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