John Milton, b. 1608.
From Hymn on the Morning of Christ’s Nativity:
Such musick (as ’tis said)
Before was never made,
But when of old the sons of morning sung,
While the Creator Great
His constellations set,
And the well-ballanc’t world on hinges hung,
And cast the dark foundations deep,
And bid the weltring waves their oozy channel keep.
Ring out ye Crystall sphears,
Once bless our human ears,
(If ye have power to touch our senses so)
And let your silver chime
Move in melodious time;
And let the Base of Heav’ns deep Organ blow
And with your ninefold harmony
Make up full consort to th’Angelike symphony.
For if such holy Song
Enwrap our fancy long,
Time will run back, and fetch the age of gold,
And speckl’d vanity
Will sicken soon and die,
And leprous sin will melt from earthly mould,
And Hell it self will pass away,
And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day.
Quotes about Milton:
Scarcely any man ever wrote so much and praised so few.–Samuel Johnson
And malt does more than Milton can
To justify God’s ways to man.
Ale, man, ale’s the stuff to drink
For fellows whom it hurts to think: –A.E. Houseman
The reason Milton wrote in fetters when he wrote of Angels and God, and at liberty when he wrote of Devils and Hell, is because he was a true Poet, and of the Devil’s party without knowing it. –William Blake