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enfign of the family) in Bread Street. He was educated at Christ Church, Oxford, embraced the doctrines of the reformed church, and in confequence was difinherited by his father, who was a bigoted papit. The profesion, however, which he chofe was fo fucceísful, as to enable him to give his children a liberal education and to allow him to país his latter years in the leifure and tranquillity of a country life.

The grandfather of the poet was keeper of the forest of Shotover, in Oxfordshire, and his family had been long fettled at Milton, in that neighbourhood. They took, however, the unfortunate fide in civil wars, their eitate was fequeftrated, and their rank and opulence confequently destroyed.

Milton's father was a perfon of a fuperior and accomplished mind, and was greatly distinguished for his mufical talents; indeed, in fcience, he is faid to have been equal

for the infcription under his print in the Logic fays that in 1671, he was 63 years of age. Miton's armorial bearings were argent, an eagle difplayed with two heads gules, legged and beaked fable. A fmall filver feal, with thefe arms, with which he was accustomed to feal his letters, came into the hands of Mr. Thomas Payne, Bookteller, on the death of Fofter, the husband of Milton's grand-daughter, which was fold to Mr. Thomas Hollis in 1761, who left his eftate at the Hyde, near Ingateftone, in Effex, to Thomas Brand, Esq., who took the name of Hollis ; the latter left the fame property to the late Dr. Diiney, who was the laft poffeffor of the feal.

See Guillim's Heraldry, p. 210.

He died about 1647, and was buried in Cripplegate Church. See T. Warton's note on Carmen ad Patrem, ver. 66, p. 525, ed. fecond. Aubrey fays he read without fpectacles at 84

• There have been fome doubts about the fituation of the village of Milton. See Life by Newton, p. 1. See Todd's Life, p. 2, and the note. Wood's Fajti Oxen. vol. i, art. 262.

'John and Chriftopher, fons of John Milton, of Halton, of Chrift Church, Oxford, as 'tis faid, fon of John Milton, of Halton, near to Forfhill, ranger or fubranger of Shotover; his ancestors lived at Milton, near to Halton. v. Guillim's Heraldry.

8

to the very first musicians of the age. He faw the early promises of genius in his fon, and encouraged them by a careful and liberal education. Milton was at first placed under the domestic tuition of Thomas Young, a learned puritan minister, and native of Effex; to whom he was in after life much attached, and to whom his fourth elegy, and the first of his Latin Epiftles, are infcribed. A portrait of him, by Cornelius Janfen, when only ten years old, shows the affection of the parents for their handsome and accomplished child, who even at that early age was forming the first flower of his youthful genius; and whose vernal promise was ripening faft into works of finished and exquifite beauty.

Young1o quitted England in 1623, and it is probable

8 On a work called " A Sixefold Politician, together with a Sixefold Precept of Policy, 1609," attributed to him, fee Mr. I. P. Collier's Poetical Decameron, vol. ii. p. 305, Philips fays, That as I have been told and I take it by our author himself, that his father compofed an Il Domine of forty parts, for which he was rewarded with a gold medal and chain, by a Polish prince, to whom he presented it, and that some of his fongs are to be feen in old Witby's Set of Airs, besides fome compofitions of his in Ravenscroft's Pfalms, v. p. xli. Milton's Poetical Works, ed. Pickering, 1826. Some beautiful lines in Milton's Poem ' ad Patrem' allude to his father's fkill in mufic.

Ipfe volens Phoebus fe difpertire duobus,

Altera dona mihi, dedit altera dona parenti,

Dividuumque deum genitorque, puerque tenemus.'

See Burney's Hift. of Mufic, vol. iii. p. 134. In a little book which I poffefs, the Pfalms, by W. Slayter, 12mo. 1643, one of the tunes is by J. Milton. See alfo Todd's Milton, vol. i. p. 4, and vi. p. 337, and Aubrey Letters, vol. iii. p. 439, and Hunter on Shakespeare's Tempest, p. 56.

* This picture was in the poffeffion of T. Hollis, Efq., and is engraven by Cipriani, in his Memoirs, p. 96, it represents the youthful poet in a richly worked collar, and ftriped jacket. It was purchased by Mr. Hollis at C. Stanhope's fale, who bought it for twenty guineas of the executors of Milton's widow. The picture of Milton when about twenty, was in the poffeffion of the Right Honourable Arthur Onflow. 10 In Mr. Fellowes's tranflation of Milton's Letters printed in Dr.

1:

That is the fatue year, Mirror was admitted into St. Paul's Dituvo, wuder the care of Alexander Gil. His weared one of fucy had already commenced: 17 anno,'

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< lawen interea belli circumfonat horror,
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whose trend to No.. Gil, in Wood's Atb. Oxız. vol. ii. p. 22, T Warton", Milion, p 419. He died Nov. 17, 1635, and is not wall with the fon of the fame name, who fucceeded him in this spell 1 in 1640, having for five years disgraced the School Apelly air ↓ kellness he had been usher to his father." He was, dej bateak, « bowl post and a worse man." v. B. Jonjen's W ́erks, vol. vi. ****, *&Traeli's Gamm, on Charles the First, vol. ii. p. 330. A.

A Guil was fined £2,000 for drinking Felten's health. I

is ♥ Aspy M Gif, Parerga, five Poetici Conatus, 12mo. 1632, that pango 34 ks, Cafaubon. A. Gil the younger muft have been a decided preganja, five he has feveral poems addressed to the royal family, and to the Berg He has an epiftle, as Milton has, to his Father, p. 14. There mmra palambling one in Milton's verfes to Chriftina. (Christina qeform Formula Berla poli!')

Pene fub arétoi fidere regna poli!'

Be Mine's third legy, ver. 9, are thefe lines, which puzzled the comMa till Sir 17. Dalrymple explained them to T. Warton.

one memini larique ducis, fratrifque verendi Insingellivis olla e remata rogis.'

Anak Bain #pasaphium, p. 91, Gil mentions who these brothers in

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"Rasmuss Mamafelis, quem nec Brunonius heros
Aume use enmmum quem domuere decem ;'

1. Muck and the Duke of Brunfwick.

Gil fpeaks of himself in

The Pickers; Hactenus vitam egi nefcio qua fiderum inclementiâ, homiDrum ct lurtuna mjunia perpetuo colluétantem.'

he fays, ætatis duodecimo vix unquam ante mediam noctem à lucubrationibus cubitum difcederem;' and Aubrey adds, that when Milton went to school, he ftudied very hard, and fate up very late, commonly till twelve or one o'clock, and his father ordered the maid to fitt up for him.' In a letter to his preceptor, dated not long after his time, he fays- Hæc fcripfi Londini, inter urbana diverticula, non libris, ut foleo circumfeptus.'

Thus early and deep were laid the foundation of his future fame. His ftudies were in a great measure poetical. Humphrey Lownes, the printer, who lived in the fame street, fupplied him with Spenser and Sylvester's translation of Du Bartas: his admiration of the former is known to all; the attention which he paid to the more obfcure, and now almost forgotten poet, was pointed out more fully than before, by my late ingenious friend Mr. Charles Dunster, in a little work which he called Milton's Early Reading, or the Prima Stamina of Paradife Loft.12

Aubrey fays, Milton was a poet when only ten years old. Those who are interested in watching the early dawning of genius as it opens on the youthful mind; and in comparing the different periods in which great talents have displayed both the promise, and the direction of their future power; will not be displeased at my recalling to their memory the paffage in that elegant biography of Cowley, which Sprat addreffed to their mutual friend Martin Clifford, and in which he mentions the age when

12 That Milton read and borrowed from Sylvefter in his early poems, no one who reads Mr. Dunster's book can reasonably doubt. Sylvefter had the jewels, and Milton set them beautifully. See what Mr. Campbell fays on Milton's obligations to Sylvefter, in his Specimens of the British Poets, vol. i. p. 182, &c. Du Bartas's fame is now in full bloffom in Germany, and has received the praife of GOETHE himself. He is confidered at Dresden and at Weimar as one of the greatest poets that ever appeared, and so once he was esteemed in England-" Who is there,

Cowley first became inspired by the muse, and the book that excited his youthful imagination. There is a fingular coincidence between those two great contemporaries, in the dates affigned by their refpective biographers. 'Vix dum decennis,' fays Sprat, Poeta factus eft.' We fhall be less surprised to hear that Spenfer was alike the object of their early admiration, legendo Spenfero noftro, Scriptore fane illuftri, et vel adultis difficili.' Happy had it been for Cowley's fame, had he not early wandered away from the instructor of his youth; and left for Epic, and Pindaric flights, that which even now delights, and must for ever please, his moral fong, the voice of nature and of truth, the language of the heart.

In 1623 Milton produced his translations of the 1 14th and 136th Pfalms ;13 and in his seventeenth1 year he was fent from St. Paul's fchool, and admitted a penfioner at Chrift's College, Cambridge, on the 12th of February,

fays Mr. Wordsworth, that can now endure to read the Creation of Dubartas, yet all Europe once refounded with his praise; he was careffed by Kings, and when his Poems were tranflated into our language, the Fairy Queen faded before it."

13 Birch has given the dates of the appearance of Milton's earliest poems:

1623. Pfalms.

1624. Latin Ode on the Death of the Lord Chancellor.

1627. The 7th of Latin Elegies.

1628. Philofophical Verses.

1629. On Chrift's Nativity.

1630. On Shakespeare.

The earliest PRINTED writing of Milton, 1632, fays Mr. Hunter, are the lines on Shakespeare. See Notes on Shakespeare, p. 336. On these lines fee Hurd's Cowley, i. 168: "Milton, in his younger days, fell into this delufion, affecting harsh numbers, and uncouth expreffion. See his Poem on Shakespeare; but the vigour of his genius or perhaps his courfe of Life, enabled him to break through the fnare-exemplar vitiis imitabile."

14 Anthony Wood and Toland affert that he was sent to Cambridge in his fifteenth year, but erroneously. See Birch's Life, p. 3.

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