John Milton, 1608-1674

[Mentioned in Science and Health, p. 372]

John Milton, one of England's great poets, was eleven when the Pilgrims sailed for America. His father, disinherited for becoming a Protestant, made a sufficiently good living as a scrivener to provide his son with a fine education: a tutor in his early years, St. Paul's school. and seven years at Christ's College. Cambridge. An expert musician— both a composer and a performer —the father taught his son to sing and to play the organ.

At Cambridge, Milton decided not to take Holy Orders, but to be a poet. He was a diligent student of the classics and was always interested in mathematics and music. For five years after leaving Cambridge, he continued his study of Greek and Latin writers, and by the time he was thirty he had written almost all of his minor poems. "Comus" was written at I lie request of a popular composer of the clay and was performed at Ludlow Castle in 1634.

Signs of the Times
June 9, 1956

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