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had prepared for the press an answer to some little scribbling quack in London, who had written a scur rilous libel against him; but whether by the dissuasion of friends, as thinking him a fellow not worth his notice, or for what other cause, Mr. Philips knoweth not, this answer was never published". And indeed the best vindicator of him and his writings hath been Time. Posterity hath universally paid that honour to
the same time with the commencement of the Paradise Lost and the Thesaurus, at the termination of his controversy with More, and finished it after the Restoration, but at what particular time is not stated. Philips seems to have confounded it with his former system of divinity, which was not drawn like this from the Bible only, but compiled from the systems of contemporary divines. E.
This pamphlet is supposed to have perished, according to Mr. Todd. Another however is extant, entitled, “ An argument, or Debate in Law, of the great "Question concerning the Mi"litia; as it is now settled by "ordinance of both the Houses "of Parliament. By J. M. Lon"don, 1642." 4to. on the title page of a copy of which (in the possession of the Marquis of Stafford) the second Earl of Bridgewater, the elder Brother in Comus, wrote the name of the poet as the author. Oldys also ascribed it to Milton; as well as some person, apparently of that age, who numbered some of Milton's tracts with others iu a volume of Tracts in the Library of Lambeth Pa
lace. It does not appear, however, that Mr. Todd, who gives this account, examined this Pamphlet himself. Two other tracts ascribed to Milton in the same volume of tracts at Lambeth Palace, Mr. Todd has shewn not to be his by decisive internal evidence. See Todd's Life of Milton, p. 127-130. ed. 2. In the same work, p. 133-138, the reader will also find an ample account of the other works in which, with or without reason, Milton has ever been supposed to have had any share; except that Mr. Todd does not notice a piece published in 1650, entitled The grand case of conscience concerning the ingagement stated and resolved, and of which Wood says Milton was thought to be the author. But Dr. Birch observes, that the style of the work does not in the least favour that supposition. Peck also has a long but very unsatisfactory argument to prove Milton the translator of Buchanan's Baptistes, 1642, and he assigns to Milton, with little or no pretence of reason, one or two other trifles, which are attached to Peck's Memoirs of Milton, 1740. E.
his merits, which was denied him by great part of his contemporaries.
After a life thus spent in study and labours for the public, he died of the gout at his house in Bunhill-Row on or about the 10th of November 1674, when he had within a month completed the sixty-sixth year of his age. It is not known when he was first attacked by the gout, but he was grievously afflicted with it several of the last years of his life, and was weakened to such a degree, that he died without a groan, and those in the room perceived not when he expired. His body was decently interred near that of his father (who had died very aged about the year 1647) in the chancel of the Church of St. Giles's Cripplegate; and all his great and learned friends in London, not without a friendly concourse of the common people, paid their last respects in attending it to the grave. Mr. Fenton in his short but elegant account of the Life of Milton, speaking of our author's having no monument, says, that "he "desired a friend to inquire at St. Giles's Church; "where the sexton showed him a small monument, " which he said was supposed to be Milton's; but the " inscription had never been legible since he was employed in this office, which he has possessed about forty years. This sure could never have happened in "so short a space of time, unless the epitaph had been industriously erased: and that supposition, says Mr. "Fenton, carries with it so much, inhumanity, that I "think we ought to believe it was not erected to his
See Mr. Warton's note on "Si quid meremur, sana Poste
"ritas sciet," in the Ode Ad J. Rousium, v. 86. E.
memory. It is evident that it was not erected to memory, and that the sexton was mistaken. For Mr. Toland in his account of the life of Milton says, that he was buried in the chancel of St. Giles's Church," where the piety of his admirers will shortly "erect a monument becoming his worth and the encouragement of letters in King William's reign." This plainly implies that no monument was erected to him at that time, and this was written in 1698: and Mr. Fenton's account was first published, I think, in 1725; so that not above twenty-seven years intervened from the one account to the other; and consequently the sexton, who it is said had been possessed of his office about forty years, must have been mistaken, and the monument must have been designed for some other person, and not for Milton. A monument indeed has been erected to his memory in Westminster Abbey by Auditor Benson in the year 1737; but the best monument of him is his writings".
In his youth he was esteemed extremely handsome, so that while he was a student at Cambridge, he was called the Lady of Christ's College. He had a very
fine skin and fresh complexion; his hair was of a light brown, and parted on the foretop hung down in curls waving upon his shoulders; his features were exact and regular; his voice agreeable and musical; his habit clean and neat; his deportment erect and manly. He was middle-sized and well proportioned, neither tall nor short, neither too lean nor too corpulent, strong and active in his younger years, and though afflicted with frequent head-aches, blindness, and gout, was yet a comely and well-looking man to the last. His eyes were of a light blue colour, and from the first are said to have been none of the brightest; but after he lost the sight of them, (which happened about the 43d year of his age,) they still appeared without spot or blemish, and at first view and at a little distance it was not easy to know that he was blind'.
sions before the University, At quibusdam audivi nuper Domina. Birch.
'Dr. Symmons, I know not upon what authority, says, that the lustre of his eyes was peculiarly vivid; their colour, according to Aubrey, was a dark gray. Aubrey adds quaintly, "His har"monical and ingenious soul did lodge in a beautiful and well"proportioned body." Dr. Symmons, (Life of Millon, p. 573. ed. 2.) has told briefly, and Mr. Todd has given at full length (Life, p. 25-28. ed. 2.) a story, resting on no foundation, of Milton's having been observed sleeping under a tree by an Italian Lady, travelling through England, who left in his hand some lines from Guarini's twelfth Madrigal, in compliment to his beauty, and disappeared before he awoke.
Mr. Richardson had an
And Milton is supposed to have hurried into Italy in search of his unknown admirer. If any thing of the kind happened to him, it was probably a jest contrived by his College acquaintances, desirous to amuse themselves at the expense of his vanity; for they are represented as having informed him of what had passed. But the story has not even the merit of being original; if the parallel tale, which Mr. Todd reports, was extant before the seventeenth century.
Milton's own account of his personal appearance in his Second Defence, (Pr. W. ii. p. 374. ed. 1753.) written when he was about forty-six, is as follows. De formis quidem a nemine, quod sciam, qui modo me vidit, sum unquam habitus; formosus necne, minus laboro: statura fateor
account of him from an ancient clergyman in Dorsetshire, Dr. Wright, who found him in a small house, which had (he thinks) but one room on a floor; in that, up one pair of stairs, which was hung with a rusty green, he saw John Milton sitting in an elbow chair, with black clothes, and neat enough, pale but not cadaverous, his hands and fingers gouty, and with chalk stones; among other discourse he expressed himself to this purpose, that was he free from the pain of the gout, his blindness would be tolerable. But there is the less need to be particular in the description of his person, as the idea of his face and countenance is pretty well known from the numerous prints, pictures, busts, medals, and other representations which have been made of him. There are two pictures of greater value than the rest, as they are undoubted originals, and were in the possession of Milton's widow: the first was drawn when he was about twenty-one, and is at present in the collection of the Right Honourable Arthur Onslow, Esq. Speaker of the House of Com
non sum procera; sed quæ mediocri tamen quam parvæ propior sit: sed quid si parva, qua et summi sæpe tum pace tum bello fuere; quanquam parva cur dicitur, quæ ad virtutem satis magna est. Sed neque exilis admodum, to save animo iisque viribus ut cum ætas vitæque ratio sic ferebat, nec ferrum tractare nec stringere quotidiano usu exercitatus nescirem; eo accinctus, ut plerumque eram, cuivis vel multo robustiori exæquatum me putabam, securus quid mihi quis injuriæ vir viro inferre posset. Idem hodie animus, eædem vires, oculi non iidem; ita tamen extrinsecus
illæsi ita sine nube clari ac lucidi, ut eorum qui acutissimum cernunt: in hac solum parte, memet invito, simulator sum. In vultu, quo "nihil exsanguius" esse dixit, is manet etiamnum color exsangui et pallenti plane contrarius, ut quadragenario major vix sit cui non denis prope annis videar natu minor; neque corpore contracto neque cute. In his ego si ulla ex parte mentior, multis millibus popularium meo-> rum, qui de facie me norunt, exteris etiam non paucis, ridiculus merito sim. Atque hæc de forma mea vel coactus. E.