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offences against College difcipline, connected with laxity of moral conduct, it would be unjuft, indeed abfurd, to look; and it would show a total ignorance of Milton's character—in all that refpects purity of life, confitent from youth to age.19 Certainly he entered the academic bowers, rich in every youthful and virtuous accomplishment, nursed by his parents and preceptors in all pure and lofty contemplations, and filled with the most honourable ambition. He had been educated under two persons, both of found and elegant literature, and one of them of poetical talent; from them he had imbibed an early and correct tafte for the beauties of ancient literature; and his progress in such studies had already marked the conftancy of his application, and the congeniality of his mind. Aubrey fays he studied very hard in fchool; and his tafte and knowledge were at that time more than ufually perfected. When he entered at Cambridge, he found a very different system of education purfued. The old fcholaftic ftudies of the Church were ftill in vogue; the antiquated logic and barren metaphyfics of the schoolmen, employed the attention of the students; and Milton, no doubt either neglected to perform fuch ungrateful tasks, or added fuch expoftulation to his refufal, as was refented by his fuperiors. Of this I feel quite certain, that this was the point of his offence, and this was all; for in a very fhort time he not only regained the favour of his tutors, but ftood high in their eftimation. In one paffage quoted

19 See Coleridge's Literary Remains, vol. i. p. 168, Lecture x. “There are fome perfons (obferves a divine, a contemporary of Milton) of whom the grace of God takes early hold, and the good fpirit inhabiting them carries them on in an even conftancy through innocency into virtue, &c. Their Christianity bearing equal date with their manhood, and reafon and religion, like warp and woof, running together, make up one web of a wife and exemplary life," &c. This beautiful paffage, Mr. Coleridge juftly applies to Milton.

in the Aldine Edition of Milton, he directly mentions the cause of his difgrace, and of its removal- Omnium plaufu exceptæ funt inimicorum qui in me alias propter ftudiorum diffidia, effent prorfus infenfo et inimico animo.' This is furely, in the absence of any evidence of irregular conduct, or of any other caufe, conclufive as to the point;20 but as fome of our readers may be so fortunate as not to be familiar with those brabblements,' and have never mumbled the fowthiftles' which grew in the fields of Cam; it will be as well to inform them of what kind they were in the days of our Bard, which occupied the thoughts of the students," who now imbibe, from the fame fountain, then so tainted and dry, the pure and living streams of found knowledge, whether filled with the philofophy of Whewell, the eloquence of Sedgwick, or the learning of Thirlwall.

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"Some few years subsequent to Milton's refidence, the biographer of a brother poet, who had been appointed tutor of Peterhouse about 1640, writes thus: Though he found himself tied down by the practice of the schools, to the drudgery of teaching his pupils the tedious and heavy fyftem of Duns Scotus, and Averroes, and the rest of the fubtle philofophers of that date, yet by the pertinent reflections he used, and the art of disentangling their minds from the perplexities of that metaphyfical jargon, and leading them to the fubftantial knowledge of the duties. of religion, humanity,' &c. Now, fome of these College


20 See proofs in Aldine Edition of Milton, p. vi. to p. x.

21 It is curious to find, more than a century after, the fifter University attacked for presenting these fame dry bones of an exhaufted logic to the students, in the place of wholesome nutriment; fo flow do great bodies move in the march of improvement. See Amburf's Terra Filius, p. 5 et paffim.


22 See Life of Dr. Jofeph Beaumont, p. xi. 4to., the author of Pfyche, Cleaveland's Works, p. 132. See also Burigny, Vie d'Erasme,

disputations, these frivolous fubtleties and barren disputations,' are before us, and while we contemplate their grim and hungry afpects, we cannot wonder at Milton's reluctance to leave his delightful pursuits, and quit the poetry and philosophy of Greece for fuch dry and uninviting difquifitions. At this time he was compofing fome of the most beautiful and finished of his Latin poems: he had written in his native language with elegance, and the Allegro and Penferofo appeared fhortly after. Here they are! the favourite themes of the tutors of Corpus and Chrifti. Angeli cognofcunt Singularia. Ignorato motu, tollitur cognitio Materiæ. Intellectus eft nobilior Voluntate. Vifio fit per receptionem Specierum.' Such are fome of the titles. The themes themselves are too long to give, and but little amusement they would afford to those not breeding up for Seraphic doctors; but thus one began: En in fronte difficultatem! quo ruo nefcius? Egone ut Alexandrum huic nodo me præbeam? Nihil minus, fed quod faciunt Pueruli nempe irritis magis an ridiculis dicam conatibus, tortilem virgulam in obturantem ferunt molem, ut in quicquid eft duriufculi, quod pedes turbat,' &c. We may fairly presume, knowing as we now do the original caufe of difpute, and the fubfequent and speedy reconciliation, that these uncongenial and useless exercises were not rigidly required of the youthful poet; that his talents and acquirements were refpected; for H. More fays, that Milton's tutor was

vol. i. p. 14, and the Preface to Du Cange's Gloffarium, and the Differtation prefixed to Rob. Stephens's Latin Thefaurus, for an account of the barbarous authors, and method of education, which then prevailed. Milton's own fyftem of education bears great fimilarity to that of Erafmus, as given in his Tractatus de Educatione Puerorum, and might have been formed from it; and both are, under necessary modifications, the foundation of the present system, and the commencement of it in the fchools of Europe.

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learned, vigilant, skilful, pious, and prudent. Milton fays, that the fellows of his college wifhed him to remain among them, and that he was "procul omni flagitio, bonis omnibus probatus." There is a poem of Milton's which will throw light on this fubject. He had to perform a vacation exercife; it was, as ufual, a metaphyfical one-Ens is reprefented as father of the Predicaments, his Ten Sons, whereof the eldest stood for Substance with his Canons, which Ens thus fpeaking explains. Quantity and Quality fpake in profe, then Relation was called by his name.-Now from these dry bones what unwonted fires fprang up! Muft not the tutors of his college have been gratified, in witneffing their now obedient pupil, not only performing his allotted though ungrateful task, but creating a foul under the ribs of Death; and over this chopped logic, fprinkling the fairest waters of the Pierian spring." Such an exercise as this, thus performed, must have charmed away all previous misunderstanding; and often as 'Relation had been called by his name'—in the schools, we may be assured he never before answered in such a noble invocation, and fuch ftrains of majestic eloquence, as


Rivers arife!-whether thou be the fon

Of utmost Tweed, or Oufe, or gulphie Don,
Or Trent, who like fome earthborn giant spreads
His thirty arms along the indented meads, &c.

"A youth of nineteen, who could write fuch lines as

'How he before the Thunderous throne doth lie,
Listening to what unfhorn Apollo fings

To th' touch of golden wires,'

23 It were to be desired, that in our Univerfities, Ariftotle's Analytics, Topics, Phyficks and Metaphyfics, be supprest, not only as vain, but difpofing to Contention and Difcord." See Roger Coke's Detection, p. 665. See alfo p. 22, which paffages fhow the prevailing studies of the time.

could not but be in the highest estimation in the Mufe's feat.

"This is the view of the subject which the editor of the former Aldine edition first took, which Sir Egerton Brydges fupports, and from which Mr. St. John does not diffent. Whether to use Mistress Powell's expreffion, Milton's choleric temper expressed itself thus early ; or whether he brought to the precincts of the parent church any partial prejudices imbibed from his tutor 'Young,' and expreffed them with his usual energy and warmth; certainly the verses in which he alludes to the fubject, appear to point rather to his ftudies than to his conduct, as the cause of offence-' Ceteraque ingenio non fubeunda meo.'"

As a removal of all doubt on this fubject is important, meeting us as the charge does on the authority of a great name, I fhall here tranfcribe fome further notice of it made by me, subsequent to the publication of the life of Milton, prefixed to the firft Aldine edition of his poems.

Milton was defigned by his parents for the profeffion of the church; but during his refidence at the University, he changed his intention. Dr. Newton confiders that he had conceived early prejudices against the doctrine and discipline of the church; but Johnson seems to think that his objections lay not fo much against subscription to the articles, but related to canonical obedience. His own account is as follows:25 "By the intention of my parents and friends, I was destined of a child to the service of the church, and in mine own refolutions. Till coming to

24 See his Letter to a Friend in Birch's Life, p. vi., printed from Trinity MSS.

25 See Reafon of Church Government urged against Prelacy. Profe Works, vol. i. p. 150.

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