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LIFE AND TIMES,
RELIGIOUS AND POLITICAL OPINIONS:
ANIMADVERSIONS UPON DR. JOHNSON'S LIFE OF MILTON, &c. &c.
BY JOSEPH TVIMEY,
“My veneration for our great countryman is equal to wbat I feel for the Grecian."--Cowper.
“ In point of sublimity, Homer cannot be compared with Milton." —Robert Hall.
PUBLISHED BY EFFINGHAM WILSON,
The former biographers of Milton have exhibited him principally in his character as a poet, but have obscured his features as a patriot, a protestant, and non-conformist. The writer has attempted to give an accurate and full-length portrait, in all those respects, of this most eminent of our countrymen.
For the purpose of accomplishing this design, he has made considerable extracts from the prose writings of Milton, by which, in a good degree, he appears as his own biographer.
In reference to the character of those works, he takes the liberty of quoting the sentiments of the present Bishop of Chester, who says:
“ There is much reason for regretting, that the
prose works of Milton, where, in the midst of much that is coarse and intemperate, passages
of such redeeming beauty occur, should be in the hands of so few readers, considering the advantages which might be derived to our literature from the study of their original and nervous elo
The prejudice which has existed against Milton's prose works, on account of his republican and dissenting principles, fully accounts for their having been so little known; but it is hoped that such feelings are rapidly subsiding, if they are not as yet become quite extinct. On this subject, the highly respectable writer just quoted says, in the same preface:
“ But in happier times, when it is less difficult to make allowance for the effervescence caused by the heat of conflicting politics, and when the judgment is no longer influenced by the animosities of party, the taste of the age may be safely and profitably recalled to those treatises of Mil
* Preface to Treatise of Christian Doctrine.