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Then with expanded wings he stuers his flight .
London :Published as the Act directo, Ana 1793,
, and 6 Newbery.
L I F E
From a family and town of his name in Oxfordshire,
our author derived his descent; but he was born at
London in the year 1608. The publisher of his works in prose (on whose veracity fome part of this narrative must entirely depend) dates his birth two years earlier than this: but contradicting himself afterwards in his own computation, I reduce it to the time that Monsieur Bayle hath assigned; and for the fame reason which prevailed with him to affign it. His father, John Milton, by profession a scrivener, lived in a reputable manner on a competent estate, entirely his own acquisition; having been early difinherited by his parents for renouncing the communion of the church of Rome, to which they were
zealously devoted. By his wife, Sarah Cafton, he had
likewise one daughter, named Anna; and another fon, Christopher, whom he trained to the practice of
the common law; who in the civil wars adhered to
the royal cause: and in the reign of King James II. by too easy a compliance with the doctrines of the court, both religious and civil, he attained to the dignity of being made a Judge of the Common Pleas; of which he died divested not long after the Revolution.
But John, the subject of the present essay, was the favourite of his father's hopes; who, to cultivate the great genius which early displayed itself, was at the expence of a domestic tutor; whose care and capacity his pupil hath gratefully celebrated in an ex
cellent Latin elegy. At his initiation An. Ætat. 12.
he is said to have applied himself to letters with such indefatigable industry, that he rarely was prevailed with to quit his studies before midnight: which not only made him frequently subject to severe pains in his head, but likewise occasioned that weakness in his eyes, which terminated in a total privation of sight. From a domestic education he was removed to St. Paul's School, to complete his acquaintance with the classics, under the care of Dr.
Gill: and after a short stay there, was An. Ætat. 15.
transplanted to Christ College in Cambridge, where he distinguished himself in all kinds