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John MiltonLife, Writing, Reputation$
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Paul Hammond and Blair Worden

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780197264706

Published to British Academy Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.5871/bacad/9780197264706.001.0001

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Milton and His Biographers

Milton and His Biographers

(p.187) 10 Milton and His Biographers
John Milton

Gordon Campbell

Thomas N. Corns

British Academy

This chapter presents an overview of Milton's biographers from the earliest lives of the poet to the year 2000. The life of Milton has been a subject of quite a lot of accounts compared to other early modern English writers, due in part to the availability of early biographies by people who knew him; in part because of the towering status he enjoyed in the English canon despite attempts to unseat him; and in part because of his story, of poetic genius surrounding surviving political engagement, of resolution and moral courage overcoming great physical impairment. Biographers from Cyriak Skinner to Barbara Lewalski are discussed in the chapter, including the ebbs and flows of Milton biography and the ideological partiality among the biographers.

Keywords:   Milton's biographers, life of Milton, biographies, biographers, Cyriak Skinner, Milton biography, ideological partiality

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