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noise; the rest are perhaps too diffuse on common topickş; but the lat patural and beautiful.
From Florence he went to Sienna, and from Sienna to Rome, where he wa again received with kindness by the Learned and the Great. Holstenius, the keeper of the Vatican library, who had resided three years at Oxford, introduced him to Cardinal Barberini: and be, at a musical entertainment, waited for him at the door, and led him by the hand into the assembly. Here Selvagy praised him in a distich, and Sulsilli in a tetrastich: neitiier of them of muc! value. The Italians were gainers by this literary commerce ; for the encomiums with which Milton repaid Salsilli, though not secure against a stern grammarian, turn the balance indisputably in Milton's favour.
Of these Italian testimonies, poor as they are, he was proud enough to publish them before his poems; though he says, he cannot be suspected but to have known that they were said non tam de se, quam supra se.
At Rome, as at Florence, he staid only two nionths; a time indeed sufficient, if he desired only to ramble with an explainer of its an antiquities, or to view palaces and count pictures; but certainly too short for the contemplation of learning, policy, or manners.
From Rome he passed on to Naples, in company of a hermit; a companion from whom little could be expected, yet to hin Milton owed his introduction to Manso marquis of Villa, who had before been the patron of Tasso. Manso was enough delighted with his accomplishıments to honour him with a sorry distich, in which he commends him for every thing but his religion ; and Mil. ton, in return, addressed him in a Latin poem, which must have raised an high opinion of English elegance and literature,
His purpose was now to have visited Sicily and Greece ; but, hearing of the differences between the king and parliament, lie thought it proper to hasten home, rather than pass his life in foreign amusenierits while his countrymen were contending for their rights. He therefore came back to Rome, though the merchants informed him of plots laid against him by the Jesuits, for the liberty of his conversations on religion. He had sense enough to judge that there was no danger, and therefore kept on his way, and acted as before, neither obtruding nor shunning controversy. He had perhaps given some offence by visiting Galileo, then a prisoner in the inquisition for pliilosophical heresy; and at Napies he was told by Manso, that, by his declarations on religious questions, he had cxcluded himself from some distinctions which he should otherwise have paid him. But such conduct, though it did not please, was yet sufficiently safe ; and Milton staid two months more at Rome, and went on to Florence without inolestation.
From Florence he visited Lucca. He afterwards went to Venice; and having sent away a collection of music and other books, travelled to Geneva, which he probably considered as the metropolis of orthodoxy.
Here he reposed, as in a congenial element, and became acquainted with John Diodati and Frederick Spanheim, two learned professors of Divinity. From Geneva he passed through France; and came home, after an absence of a year and three months.
At his return he heard of the death of his friend Charles Diodati; a man whom it is reasonable to suppose of great merit, since he was thought by Milton worthy of a poem, intituled, Epitaphium Damonis, written with the common but childish imitation of pastoral life.
He now hired a lodging at the house of one Russel, a taylor, in St. Bride's Church yard, and undertook the education of John and Edward Philips, his nister's sons. Finding his rooms too little, he took a house and garden in Aldersate-street*, which was not then so much out of the world as it is now; and choce his dwelling at the upper end of a passage, that he night avoid the noise of the street. Here he received more boys to be boarded and instructed.
Let not our veneration for Milton forlid us to look with some degree of mertincnton great promises and small performances, on the man who hastens home, because his countrymen are contending for their liberty, and when ite reaches the secne of action, vapours away his patriotism in a private boarding-school, This is the period of his life from which all bis biographers seem inclince to siriak. They are unwilling that Milton should be degra led to a school-master; tit, since it cannot be denied that he taught boys, one finds out, that he taught tor nothing, and another, that his motive was only zeal for the propafgation of learning and virtue ; and all tell what they do not know to be true, only to ext use an act which no wise man will consider as in itself disgraceful. His ther was alives; his allowance was not ainple ; and he supplied its deficiencies tian lonest and useful employment.
le is told, that in the art of education he performed wonders; and a formidable ti giren of the authors, Greek and Latin, that were read in Aldersgatestreet, by youth betwen en and fifteen or sixteen years of age. Those who tell or receive these stories should consider that nobody can be taught faster than le can learn. The speed of the horseman must be limited by the power of his horse: Every man, that has ever undertaken to instruct others, can tell what slow ad! puces he has been able to make, and how much patience it requires to recall ragrant inattention, to stimulate sluggish indifference, and to rectify absurd misapprehension.
of Milton, as it seems, was to teach something more solid than the common literature of Schools, by reading those authors that treat of physical subjetts; such as the Georgick, and astronomical treatiscs of the ancients. This was a scheme of improvement which seems to have buried many literary projectors of that age. Cowicy, who had more means than Milton cf knowing whiat was
* This is inaccurately expressed : Philips, and Dr. Ne:vton after him, say a garden house, ,z.
e. a horse situate in a garden, and of which tivese wire especially in the north suburbs of Lundion very many, if not few else. The terın is technical, wal frequently occurs in the sonen. cid Fast. Oxon. The meaning thereof may be collected from the si le Thomas Farnahe, the famous schuul-master, of whom the anthor says, that he taug'is in Golds:nith's Rents in 1:ipplegate parish, behind Redcross-tree, where were large gardens al han ome houses. 11.droni's house in Jewin-street was also a garden-louse, as were inueçd most of his dwellings 1'er his settlement in London. II.
wanting to the embellishments of life, formed the same plan of education i his imaginary College
But the truth is, that the knowledge of external nature, and the sciences wil that knowledge requires or includes, are not the great or the frequent busine of the human mind. Whether we provide for action or conversation, whic!.. we wish to be useful or pleasing, the first requisite is the iclicious and mnou knowledge of right and wrong; the next is an acquaintance with the hist); of mankind, and with those examples which may be said to embody truth, ?": prove by events the reasonableness of opinions. Prejudice and Justice are virt'e and excellences of all times and of all places; we are perpetuaily moralists, we are geometricians only by chance. Our intercourse with intellectual natu' is necessarv ; our speculations upon matter are voluntarv, and at leisure. Pir: siological learning is of such rare emergence, that one man may know anothe half his life without being able to estimate his skill in laydrostaticks or asirons my; but his moral and prudential character immediately appears.
Those authors, therefore, are to be read at schools that supply most axiom of prudence, most principles of moral truth, and most materials for conversa tion; and these purposes are best served by poets, orators, and historians
Let me not be censured for this digression as pedantick or paradoxical; for i I lave Milton against me, I have Socrates on my side. It was his labour t turn philosophy from the study of nature to speculations upon life; but the innovators whom I oppose are turning off attention from life to nature. They seem to think, that we are placed here to watch the growth of plants, or the motions of the stars. Socrates was rather of opinion, that what we had to learn was, how to do good, and avoid evil.
"Οτιι τοι εν μεγάροισι κακόντ’ αγαθοε τέτικα.. Of institutions we may judge by their effects. From this wonder-working academy, I do not know that there ever proceeded any man very eminent for knowledge: its only genuine product, I believe, is a small History of Poetry, written in Latin by his ne; liew Philips, of which perhaps none of my readers has ever heard *.
That in his school, as in cvery thing else which he undertook, he labouca with great diligence, there is no reason for doubting. One part of his method deserves general imitation. Fre was careful to instruct his scholars in religion. Every Sunday was spent upon theology: of which he dictated a short sistem, gathered from the writers that were then fashionable in Dutch universities.
He set bis pupils an example of hard study and sparc diet; only now and then he allowed himself to pass a day of festivity and indulgence with some gay gentlemen of Gray's Inn.
“ We may be sure at least, that Dr. Johnson had never seen the book he spiahs of; for “it is entirely composed in English, though its tittle begins with two Latin words, ' Theatrinn “ Poetarum ; or a complete Collection of the Potis, &c.'a circun tance that probably wishes "the biographer of Milton.” European Magazine, June, 1787. p. 383. E.
He row began to engage in the controversies of the times, and lent his Treath to blow the flames of contention. In 1641 lie published a treatise of Re
viction, in two books, against the established Church; being willing to help Ethio Puritans, who were, die says, inferior to the Prelates in learning.
Hai bishop of Norwich, had published an Humble Remonstrance, in defence of Episcopacy; to which, in 1641, six ministers*, of whose names the firsť letters made the celebrated word Smectymnuus, gave their answer. Of this Answer a Confutation was attempted by the learned Usher; and to the Confutation Milion published a Reply, intituled, Of Prelutical Episcopacy, and whether it may bisatual from the Apostolical Times, by virtue of those testimonies which are alledged rasti purpose in some late treatises, one whereof goes under the name of James Lord Esap sf Armagh.
Tervetianscribed this title to shew, by his contemptuous mention of Usher, that he had now adopted the puritanical savageness of manners. His next work was, The Reason of Church Government urged against Prelacy, by 11. John Millon, 15-2. In this book he discovers, not with ostentatious exultation, but will calın confidence, his high opinion of his own powers; and promises to undertake something, he yet knows not what, that may be of use and honour to his country. “ This,” says he,“ is not to be obtained but by devout prayer to " that Eternal Spirit that can cnrich with all utterance and knowledge, and " sends out his Seraphim with the hallowed fire of his altar, to touch and
purify the lips of whom he pleases. To this must be added, industrious and * select reading, steady observation, and insight into all seemly and generous
arts and affairs; till which in some measure be compast, I refuse not to " sustain this expectation.” From a promise like this, at once fervid, pious
. and rational, might be expected the Paradise Lost.
He pullished the same year two more pamphlets, upon the sa ne question. To one of his antagonists, who affirms that he was vomited out of the university, he answers, in general terms; “ The Fellows of the College wherein I spent
some years, at my parting, after I had taken two degrees, as the manner is, signified many times how much better it would content that I hould stay.
-As for the common approbation or dislike of that place, as now it is, í that I should esteem or disesteem myself the more for that, too simple is " the answerer, if he think to obtain one with me. Of small practice were the
physician who could not judge, by what she and her sister have of long
time vomited, that the worser stuff she strongly keeps in her stomach, bat “ the better she is ever kecking at, and is quzasy ; she vomits now out of “ sickness; but before it will be well with her, she must vomit with strong
physick. The university, in the time of her better health, and my younger judgment, I never greatly admired, but now much less.”
Tl.is is surely the language of a man who thinks that he has been injured. He proceeds io describe the course of his conduct, and the train of his thou 'a's;
and, Stephen Parkall, Edmund Calamy, Thomas Young, Matthew Newcomen, William Spinstow.
and, because lie has been suspected of incontinence, gives an account of his on
purity :: That if I be justly charged,” says he, “ with this crime, it may com upon me with tenfold slame."
The style of his piece is rough, and such periaps was that of his antagoni This roughness he justifies, by great examples in a long digression. Sometimes) tries to be humorous: “ Lest I should take him for some chaplain in hand, sun “ squire of the body to his prelate, one who serves not at the altar only but at th
Court-cupboard, he will bestow on us a pretty model of himself; and sets m “ out half a dozen ptisical mottoes, wherever he liad them, hopping short in tł.
measure of convulsion fits; in which labour the agony of his wit having scape “ narrowly, instead of well sized periods, he greets us with'a quantity of thunt “ring posies -- And thus ends this section, or rather dissection of bimself. Such is the controversial merriment of Milton; his gloomy seriousness is ye more offensive. Such is his malignity, that hell grow's darker at his frown
His father, after Reading was taken by Essex, came to reside in his house; and his school increased. At Whitsuntide, in his thirty-fifth year, lie married Mary the daughter of Mr. Powel, a justice of the peace in Oxfordshire. He brough her to town with him, and expected all the advantages of a conjugal life. Th lady, however, seems not much to have delighted in the pleasures of spare die and hard study; for, as Philips relates, “ having for a month led a philosophii: " life, after having been used at home to a great house, and much company " and joviality, her friends, possibly by her own desire, made earnest suit te “ have her company the remaining part of the summer; which was granted “ upon a promise of her return at Michaelmas."
Milton was too busy to much miss his wife: he pursued his studies; and now and then visited the Lady Margaret Leith, whom he has mentioned in one o his sonnets. At last Michaelmas arrived; but the Lady had no inclination to return to the sullen gloom of her husband's habitation, and therefore very wil.
. Jingly forgot her promise. He sent her a letter, but had no answer ; he sent more with the same success. It could be alledged that letters miscarry; he therefore dispatched a messenger, being by this time too angry to go himself. His messenger was sent back with some contempt. The family of the Lady were Cavaliers.
In a man whose opinion of his own merit was like Milton's, less provocation than this might have raised violent resentment. Milton soon determined to repudiate her for disobedience; and, being one of those who could easily find arguments to justify inclination, published (in 1644) The Ductilne uri D.sc.pline of Divorce; which was followed by The Judgement of Martin Burr, concerning Divorce; and the next year, his Tetraclordon, Ep.9:pour the four child places of Scripture which treat of Marrirge.
This innovation was opposed, as might be expected, by thr clergy, who, thien holding their famous assembly at Westminster, procured that the author should be calledbefore the Lords ; “ but that House,” says Wood,
“ but that House,” says Wood, " whether approva ing the doctrine, or not favouring his accusers, did soon dismiss him."
There seems not to have been much written against him, nor any thing by any writer of eminence. The antagonist that apreared is styled by liim, a Serving