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J Milton turns 400! 
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Post J Milton turns 400!
http://www.nybooks.com/articles/22357

Volume 56, Number 3 · February 26, 2009
Heroic Milton: Happy Birthday
By Frank Kermode


John Milton: Life, Work, and Thought
by Gordon Campbell and Thomas N. Corns
Oxford University Press, 488 pp., $39.95

Milton: Poet, Pamphleteer, and Patriot
by Anna Beer
Bloomsbury, 458 pp., $34.99

Is Milton Better Than Shakespeare?
by Nigel Smith
Harvard University Press, 214 pp., $22.95

Quote:
Celebrations of the four hundredth anniversary of the birth of John Milton in December 1608 have been modest and largely academic. He was born, and for the most part lived, in the City of London, now the financial district. Nationalistic sentiment in those days was such that the idea of a great national poet was welcomed, and Milton had high hopes of filling that role; but although his gifts were acknowledged there were aspects of his career, especially his politics, that were far from pleasing to all parties. In the eighteenth century, however, his poetry was highly valued for its own sake, and there was a revival of interest in his politics. Wordsworth celebrated Milton's republicanism as well as his poems.


... :hbd: This is an interesting article - available at link above.



Fri Mar 06, 2009 6:41 am
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The article was informative, written by a wise scholar. I completely agree with him that we admire PL today as " a feat of poetic architecture without rival except the ancient epics whose messages of virtue it transcends." This gives credit both to its art and to the moral seriousness you have appreciated. The critic Walter Raleigh called PL "a monument to dead ideas," but then told us that to be monumental in itself acheivement enough. Milton is a writer who is very hard to pigeonhole; as Kermode says, he is self-contradictory. And he contains multitudes.



Fri Mar 06, 2009 9:29 am
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