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Sat, Aug 7th - 7:34AM

Paradise Lost by John Milton


Paradise Lost (1667) is considered John Milton's masterpiece and one of the greatest poems in world literature. In its 12 cantos he tells the story of the fall of Adam in a context of cosmic drama and profound speculations. The poet's announced aim was to "justify the ways of God to men." The poem was written with soaring imagination and far-ranging intellectual grasp in his most forceful and exalted style.

Paradise Regained (1671), which tells of human salvation through Christ, is a shorter and lesser work, although still one of great richness and strength. John Milton (1608-1674) was quite blind by 1652. The Great Plague brought Milton to Chalfont St Giles in 1665 where he completed dictating both works.

Milton intended to become a clergyman in the Church of England, but growing dissatisfaction with the state of the Anglican clergy led him to abandon this purpose. He was the ablest pamphleteer of his time and among his tracts was A Treatise of Civil Power in Ecclesiastical Causes (1659), in which he gave practical suggestions for government reform and argued against a professional clergy and in favor of allowing people to interpret Scripture according to their own conscience.


Rev. Harry Emerson Fosdick

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