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queror, but fairly called in either by this or the next Parliament.” The angry Notes of Milton were immediately answered by L'Estrange in a pamphlet, insultingly denominated No Blind Guides. To this and the other efforts of Milton, in order to prevent the restoration of kingly government, several republican pens added their puny offerings. Such, besides the exertions of Harrington, were « Idea Democratica, or a Commonweal Platform, and A Model of a Democratical Government, both anonymous productions, in 1659, and closely agreeing with the preceding Delineation of Milton. But “ the ship of the Commonwealth,” to use the expression of Milton himself, could no longer be kept afloat. The gale of popular opinion was adverse. Of the Usurpation there were few who were not eager to shake off the galling chains. And the name and cause of the king were now in the hearty voice of almost all.
Sequestered from his office, Milton therefore quitted the house which he had occupied while he was Secretary, and in which he had lived eight years with great reputation ; visited by all foreigners of distinction, and by several persons of quality in his
Both printed in 1659. The latter proposes that the exercise of the chief magistracy and administration of the government shall cease “ to run in the name and stile of the keepers of the Liberty of England by Authority of Parliament; and shall assume the name and stile of The Senate and People of England."
own country, particularly by the exemplary Lady Ranelagh, whose son had been his pupil, and to whom four of his familiar letters are addressed ; by literary friends too; such (to follow bishop Newton's list) as Marvel, and Lawrence, and Needham, and Skinner; the last of whom had been his scholar, and is called by Wood an ingenious young gentleman ; and of whom more will be said with the description of Milton's Body of Divinity. Needham by the same authority is termed an old crony of Milton ; and perhaps their intimacy commenced with the inquiry which Milton was e directed to make, in regard to the Mercurius Pragmaticus, of which Needham was the writer; and which he ceased to conduct, being persuaded by Lenthal and Bradshawe to change his party, and to publish the Mercurius Politicus ; “ * siding with the rout and scum of the people, and making them weekly sport of all that was noble in this new miscellany of intelligence.” Even by some of the antiregal party this person was despised, and & accused of lying as well as railing : so that we wonder at the acquaintance of such a man, however considerable his talents were, with Milton. But with
Lawrence, “ the virtuous son of a virtuous father," · as Milton calls him in his twentieth Sonnet, several
circumstances led to an early and continued intercourse. The family of Lawrence lived in the neigh
e See the Order of Council, before cited, p. 111.
A. Wood, Ath. Ox. $ Second · Narrative of the Late Parliament, so called, &c. 1658, p. 28.
bourhood of Horton, where the father of Milton resided. . Lawrence gave to the world a treatise, in 1646, upon a subject of which Milton was evidently fond, “ Of our Communion and Warre with Angels;" and we may reasonably suppose, that in the friendly visits, to which the Sonnet of Milton alludes, the authority of the “h Tuscan muse” upon the guardianship of angels often formed a part of their conversation ; that Milton perhaps acknowledged the hints he had thence derived to some of his earliest strains; and that the design of Lawrence was probably thus encouraged. . Of the Council, to which Milton was Secretary, the father of Lawrence too at length was President ; but he is then described, certainly not in unison with the attribute given him by Milton, as “ i signing many an arbitrary and illegal warrant for the carrying of honest faithful men to prisons and exile without cause;" and is at the same time called “ a gentleman of a courtly breed, and a good trencher-man!”
Aubrey says, that several “ foreigners had been
"The Addresses of the Italian Muse All Angelo Custode are frequent. See “ Rime del M. A. M. Negrisoli, Vineg. 1552," . p. 129, and “Sonetti di Diversi Accademici Sanesi, Sien. 1608," pp. 136, 200, 239, &c. I might also add the frequent introduction of a Spirit or Angel as the annunziatore to the early Italian dramas. Compare Milton's Verses addressed to Leonora Baroni, his prologue to Comus, and the same poem throughout.
Second Narrative, &c. ut supr. p. 2.. k“ He was mightily importuned to goe into Fr. and Italie ; foreigners came much to see him, and much admired him; and
induced to visit England, in order chiefly to see Cromwell and Milton. In the discharge of his office Milton indeed had acquired the highest credit both abroad and at home; while as the author of the exquisite strains in Lycidas, and Comus, and L'Allegro, and Il Penseroso, he was now “ of small regard to see to.” Even the hyperbolical' panegyrist of Cromwell, in 1659, describing his bounty to all
the virtuous professors of poetry,” selects as an instance, “.one for all,” not Milton, but Waller. Waller indeed had newly bestowed the labour of melodious panegyrick upon the death of the Usurper. And with Waller's character as a poet the following eulogium of this panegyrist in prose has intermixed, what rarely has been observed, a taste for poetry in the gloomy and fanatick patron; which is a curiosity worth citing. “m What obliging favours has he (Cromwell) cast upon our English Virgil here, I mean Mr. Edm. Waller ; and merely for that, (his poetry,) and his other virtues ; having, in some other relations, little capacity enough to deserve them !
offered him great preferments to come over to them.” Aubrey. The collections for the Life of Milton by, Aubrey, which are preserved in the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford, are often cited in Mr. Warton's edition of Milton's Smaller Poems; and are printed entire in the Letters of eminent persons, &c. 1813, and Mr. Godwin's Lives of Edw. and J. Phillips, 1815.
'H. Dawbeny, who published “ Historie and Policie reviewed in the heroick transactions of Oliver, late Lord Protector, &c. declaring his steps to princely perfection, as they are drawn in lively parallels to the ascents of the great patriarch Moses, in thirty degrees to the height of honour. Lond. 1659.”
m Dawbeny's Hist. p. 207. ..
My lord has sufficiently showed his own most excellent judgement in poetry, by his approbation and election of him, to be the object of his great goodness, who is clearly one of the ablest and most flourishing wits that ever handled a pen ; and he does it with that natural dexterity, and promptness, as if he had begun to write so soon as to live : And whoever considers the worth of his writings, cannot but wonder how so many graces and beauties, which others labour for and never attain to, encrease in him as in a soil natural for wit and eloquence. If he goes about to translate any thing, the dead authors themselves are ready to rise out of their graves, and request him to exchange his Englished copies for their originals. In all his own things his conceptions are unimitable, his language so sweet and polite that no ice can be smoother. His sentences are always full of weight, his arguments of force ; and his words glide along like a river, and bear perpetually in them some flashes of lightning at the end of each period. He perfectly knows how to vary his eloquence upon all occasions ; to be facetious in pleasing arguments, grave in severe, polite in laborious; and, when the subject requires fervour and invective, his mouth can speak tempests. In short, he is the wonder of wits, the pattern of poets, the mirrour of orators in our age. All this I say of him, not so much out of design to applaud him, as to adore the judgement of our great Augustus, (Cromwell,) who always chose him out and crowned him for the Virgil of this nation."--Milton had