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Transcript of John Milton
A True Revolutionary By: Grace Oh Early Life Political Life Personal Life Writing Influences birth: Dec. 9, 1608 in London, England
grammar school: St. Paul's
-began studying literature
1625 Cambridge University- Master of Arts Degree
-began writing poetry
considered joining clergy of Church of England
1637 travel Europe to study art/literature (Renaissance)
1639 returned to England became involved in Puritans vs. Church of England conflict; sided with Puritans
wrote essays, tracts, and pamphlets arguing against monarchy, church, and suppression of people's rights
-"Tyranny had invaded the church."
1640 Oliver Cromwell established Commonwealth
-Milton appointed Foreign Secretary
-writing regarded matters of state
1643 married Mary Powell; separated 2 months later
1645 reunited with Mary Powell
-4 children: 1 son (died), 3 daughters
1652 Mary Powell died; Milton completely blind
1656 married Katherine Woodcock; died 16 months later; daughter died 1 month after mother
1663 married Elizabeth Minshull
distant, private life; concentrated on poetry
death: Nov. 8, 1674
buried at Church of St. Giles in Cripplegate, England personal tragedy: blindness, deaths of family and friends
hymns, Bible, God, Protestant theology
political arguments--against monarchy
religious arguments--against Church of England, for Protestantism
believed God intended for him to be a poet
3 major works: Paradise Lost (1667), Paradise Regained (1671), Samson Agonistes (1671) Paradise Lost "On His Blindness" "On Time" purpose: deplores mankind's desolation--How could things have gone so wrong in human affairs?
inspiration: Milton's personal miseries, political activity
connects ruin of man to The Fall in Genesis
Satan--charismatic, failed revolutionary
-pathos--Milton makes reader sympathize with Satan
-Milton identifies with Satan: overthrow ruler
-God made man "sufficient to have stood, though free to fall"
-contradicted Protestant doctrine of predestination
-"free will, divinely given, is a glory"
lasting influence because of personal, national, universal identity
-personal: internal conflict, personal vendetta
-national: oppression, revolution
-universal: good vs. evil, free will AKA
"When I Consider How My Light Is Spent" When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg'd with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
"Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?"
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts: who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait. Milton mourns blindness as impediment to serving God with talents
personification--Patience answers Milton
serve God by obeying his will, whether it's an action or waiting
"my Maker"--reinforces Protestant theology; direct relationship with God
"And that one talent which is death to hide"
-pun- talent (poetry) or talent (currency)
-allusion- Parable of the Talents
Fly, envious Time, till thou run out thy race,
Call on the lazy leaden-stepping hours,
Whose speed is but the heavy plummet's pace;
And glut thyself with what thy womb devours,
Which is no more than what is false and vain,
And merely mortal dross;
So little is our loss,
So little is thy gain.
For when as each thing bad thou hast intombed,
And last of all thy greedy self consumed,
Then long Eternity shall greet our bliss
With an individual kiss,
And Joy shall overtake us as a flood;
When every thing that is sincerely good
And perfectly divine,
With truth, and peace, and love, shall ever shine
About the supreme throne
Of Him, t'whose happy-making sight alone
When once our heav'nly-guided soul shall climb,
Then, all this earthly grossness quit,
Attired with stars, we shall for ever sit,
Triumphing over Death, and Chance, and thee,
O Time. question: How do you escape Time?
answer: through God
subject changes from mundane world to the divine--symbolizes Christian's spiritual journey from the earth to Heaven
personification--Time is a greedy, earthly animal that devours itself
paradox--man's relationship with Time
-both will devour themselves in greed and die
-Time will end; Man can live in Eternity through God
purpose: Man can escape ravishes of Time by achieving salvation in God Trivia What career did Milton consider before becoming a poet?
What did Milton argue against in politics?
How many wives did Milton have during his lifetime?
What were a few of Milton's writing influences?
Who does Milton identify with in Paradise Lost? Why?
One of Paradise Lost's themes is free will. This theme contradicts what doctrine of Protestantism?
In "On His Blindness," what is the answer that Patience provides?
What does the journey in "On Time" symbolize?