MILTON POETICAL WORKS
John Milton was born on 9 December 1608 in Cheapside,London. He published little until the appearance of Poems of MrJohn Milton, both English and Latin in 1646, when he was 37. Bythis time he was deeply committed to a political vocation, andbecame an articulate and increasingly indispensable spokesman forthe Independent cause. He wrote the crucial justifications for thetrial and execution of Charles I, and, as Secretary for ForeignTongues to the Council of State, was the voice of the English revolution to the world at large. After the failure of the Commonwealth he was briefly imprisoned; blind and in straitened circumstances he returned to poetry, and in 1667 published a ten-book version of Paradise Lost, his biblical epic written, as he put it, after 'long choosing, and beginning late'. In 1671, Paradise Regainedand Samson Agonistes appeared, followed two years later by an expanded edition of his shorter poems. The canon was completed in 1674, the year of his death, with the appearance of the twelve-book Paradise Lost, which became a classic almost immediately. His influence on English poetry and criticism has been incalculable.
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