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of the first leaf, and his fignature appended in full. It was with the copy fo licensed that Milton went to his publisher.
The publisher was Samuel Symons, or Simmons, printer, whofe place of bufinefs was "next door to the Golden Lion in Alderfgate Street." He feems to have been the fon or other near relative, and the fucceffor in business, of a Matthew Simmons, who had been much employed in official printing for the Commonwealth Government, and with whom in that way Milton, during his Latin Secretaryship to that Government, had had frequent dealings. Milton's Eikonoklaftes of 1648-9 had been published by this Matthew Simmons; and fo, though there were not a few other publishers in London that had published for Milton at various times, it may have been more than chance that led Milton to Samuel Simmons with his Paradife Loft. One may see now in the British Museum the original agreement between them, of date April 27, 1667, as kept by Simmons, with Milton's feal attached, and his fignature JOHN MILTON," written for him by proxy, and witnessed by a "John Fisher" and by " Benjamin Greene, fervant to Mr. Milton." In fubftance it was as follows:-For £5 then paid down to Milton he handed over the licensed manufcript to Simmons, with the ftipulation that he was to receive another £5 when the first “ impreffion," or edition, of the printed book fhould be fold off, a third £5 when the fecond "impreffion should be fold off, and a fourth £5 when the third "impreffion" should be fold off-each "impreffion," or edition, to be counted as 1,300 copies, "retailed off to particular reading customers," though (to leave a margin for presentation copies) Simmons might print 1,500. Altogether, if we convert the money of that time into its prefent equivalent, it was as if an author now were to receive 17 10s. for the right to print, with a guarantee of the fame fum at the end of the first edition, the fame at the end of the second, and the fame at the end of the third, each edition to confift of 1,300 copies. As nothing was faid of any edition beyond the third, Milton may be supposed to have looked forward at the utmost to a fale of 3,900 copies, out 4,500 that might be printed, and to have parted with his
whole intereft in the book to that extent for a fum equal to about £70 now, one fourth paid in advance, and the reft left in profpect.
The printing of the book may have begun immediately after the agreement, for the registers of Stationers' Hall show this entry under the date Auguft 20, 1667: "Mr. Sam. Symons entered for his copie, under the hands of Mr. Thomas Tomkyns and Mr. Warden Royston, a Booke or Copie Intituled Paradise Loft, a Poem in Tenne bookes, by J. M." To complete the formality of registration, one of the Wardens of the Stationers' Company had to add his name to that of the official licencer of any book registered; and Mr. Royfton, a notable Royalist bookfeller of the day, whom Milton had had occafion to know well in the time of his Secretaryfhip, was one of the Wardens that year.
Not long after the date of this entry, and prefumably in or about October, 1667, Paradife Loft was out in London, and was to be obtained at the book-fhops by "particular reading customers at the price of 35. per copy; which is as if a fimilar book now were to fell for 10s. 6d. The title-page, as purchafers then first caft their eyes upon it, was in these words :
Paradife loft. A Poem Written in Ten Books By John Milton. Licenfed and Entred according to Order. London Printed, and are to be fold by Peter Parker under Creed Church neer Aldgate; And by Robert Boulter at the Turks Head in Bishopsgate-street; And Matthias Walker, under St. Dunstons Church in FleetStreet, 1667." So in mere continuous type; but for the exact look of this original title-page, and for the look of page after page of the ten books of the text in that original edition, down to the minutest details of typography and ftationery, the reader is referred to the prefent facfimile. It is fo accurate a reproduction, even to the printer's errata, that a person having it in his hands may, for that matter, imagine himself one of the first purchasers of the original, in October or November, 1667, who has juft left Mr. Parker's fhop, near Aldgate, or Mr. Boulter's, in Bishopfgate Street, or Mr. Walker's, in Fleet Street, with a fresh copy, and is turning over the leaves as he walks.