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been bold in our vulgar phrase to mend my draught (for you left me with an extreme thirst) and to
LIB, reprinted at the end of his Poems in 1673. It was written at Hartlib's desire, and after several conversations between them both, on a subject much agitated in this age of innovation. Sir William Petty wrote in 1647, Advice to Mr. Samuel Hartlib for the Advancement of some particular parts of Learning.. Hartlib took great pains to frame a new system of education, answerable to the perfection and purity of the new common wealth.
Milton's plan of education to Hartlib has more show than value. He does not recommend those studies to boys, which, as Cicero says, in a paffage superficially understood, Adolefcentiam ALUNT, adverfas res or. nant, profperis perfugium et folatium præbent, deleEtant domi, non impediunt foris, peregrinantur nobiscui, rufticantur. Instead of laying a stress on such authors as open and enlarge a young underttanding, he prescribes an early acquaintance with geometry and physics. But thele will teach no generous sentiments, nor inculcate such knowledge as is of use at all times and on all occasions. Mathematics and aitronomy do not en. ter into the proper improvement and general business of the mind. Such sciences do not apply to the manners, nor operate upon the character. They are extraneous and technical. They are useful, but useful as the knowledge of his art is to the artificer. An excellent writer. observes, “We are perpetually moralists, but we are goeinetricians
only by chance. Our intercourse with intellectual nature is ncces. sary ; our speculations upon matter are voluntary and at leisure,
Physical knowledge is of such rare emergence, that one man may “ know another half his life, without being able to estimate his fill “in hydrostatics or astronomy : but his moral and prudential charac, “ ter immediately appears. Those authors, therefore, are to be read “ at schools, that supply most axioms of prudence, molt principles of “moral truth, and most materials for conversation : and these pur“ poses are best served by poets, ORATORS, and HISTORIANS," Milton afterwards reasoned better on this subject, PARAD. L. B. viii. 191.
Not, to know at large of things remote
Unpractic'd, unprepared, and skill to seek.
have begged your conversation again, joyntly with your said learned friend, at a poor meal or two, that we might have banded together som good authors of the antient time : among which, I. observed you to have been familiar.
Since your going, you have charged me with new obligations, both for a very kinde letter from you
dated the sixth of this month, and for a dainty peece of entertainment which came therwith. Wherin I should much commend the Tragical part, f if the Lyrical did not ravish me with a certain Dorique delicacy in your songs and odes,
Hartlib's chief pursuits seem to have been in natural and mechanical science. He published, in octavo, “ A Legacie or enlargement of " the Discourse of Husbandry used in Brabant and Flanders, Lond. “ 1652.” And, in octavo, " The Reformed Commonwealth of Bees, « with the Reformed Virginian Silk-worm, Lond. 1655." So that he extended his politics into physics. In 1655, he was consulted in a book called Chimical, medical, and chirurgical addresses to Samuel Hartlib. Again, in a pamphlet on Motion by Engines, 1651. There are some religious pieces under his name. He carried on a learned correspondence abroad, and his opinions on various topics appear to have obtained universal respect and authority. The late Mr. Walter Harte intended to republik Hartlib's Tracts, and those with which he was concerned. His collection of them I have seen. It should be noticed, that pieces sometimes attributed to Hartlib are written by others, and had only his recommendation or affistance. See manuscripts of Hartlib and Dury in the British Museum, S1.1465. 4364.4365. Prynne's LAUD, p. 301. Kennet's REGISTER, p. 870. Spratt, in the Hiftory of the Royal Society, 'says nothing of Hartlib, who seems to have been an active promoter of that institution. Nor is it less remarkable, that he never mentions Milton's TRACTATE OF EDUCATION, although he discusses the plan of Cowley's philosophical college. Edit. 1734.
P. 59. 60.
+ "If the lyrical part did not ravish me with a certain Dorique delicacy in your songs and odes."] Sir Henry Wootton, now provost of Eton college, was himself a writer of English odes, and with some degree
* Fletcher's paftoral comedy, of which more will be said hereafter, is characterised by Cartrwight, “Where $0FTNESS reigns,” Poems, P. 269. edit, 1651.
wherunto I must plainly confess to have seen yet nothing parallel in our language :
Ipfa mollities. But I must not omit to tell you, that I now onely owe you thanks for intimating unto me (how modestly soever) the true artificer. For the work it self, I had viewed som good while before, with singular delight, * having received it from our common friend Mr. R. in the very close of the late R’s Poems, printed at Oxford, wherunto it was added (as I now suppose) that the accessory
of elegance. He had also written a tragedy, while a young student at Queen's College Oxford, called Tancredo, acted by his fellowstudents. See his Life by Walton, p. II. Cowley wrote an Elegy on his death. Donne has teftified his friendship for Wootton in three copies of verses. p. 61.77.104. He is celebrated, both as a scholar and a patron, by Bastard the epigrammatist. Lib. ii. EPIGR. 4. p. 29. edit. 1598. He was certainly a polite scholar, but on the whole a mixed and desultory character. He was now indulging his studious and philosophic propensities at leisure. Milton, when this letter was written, lived but a few miles from Eton.
* “ Having received it from our common friend Mr. R. in the very close of the late Mr. R.'s Poenis, printed at Oxford, whereunto it was added, &c."] I believe “Mr. R." to be John Rouse, Bodley's librarian, of whom I have more to say hereafter. “ The late Mr. R." is unques. tionably Thomas Randolph the poet. It appears from his monument, which I have seen, in the church of Blatherwyke in Northamptonshire, that he died on the seventeenth day of March, in 1634. In which
year Comus was performed at Ludlow-castle on Michaelmasnight. In the year 1638, Randolph's Poems were printed at Oxford, viz. “ Poems, with the Muses LOOKING-GLASS and AMYNTAS. “ By Thomas Randolph, M. A. and late fellow of Trinity college “ Cambridge. Oxford, Printed by L. Litchfield printer to the Vni“ verfitie for Fr. Bowman, 1638." In quarto. Containing one hund. sed and fourteen pages. But who has ever seen a copy of this edition of Randolph's Poems with Comus at the end ? Sir Henry supposes, that Comus was added to the close of these poems, “ that the acces“ sory might help out the principal, according to the art of Itationers, " and to leave the reader Con la bocca dolce." Randolph's poems were published by his brother, who would not think such a recommendation was wanted ; and who surely did not mean to include the works
might help out the principal, according to the art of stationers, and to leave the reader Con la bocca dolce.
of others. It was foreign to his purpose. It marred the integrity of his design. He was not publishing a miscellany. Such an extraneous addition would have been mentioned in a preface. Nor were Randolph's pieces so few or lo small, as to require any such acceflion to make out the volume. A second edition of Randolph's Poems much enlarged, appeared at Oxford in duodecimo, in 1640, and with recommendatory verses prefixed, by the same printers and publishers. Here we are equally disappointed in seeking for COMUS; which, one might expect, would have been continued from the former edition.. I think this perplexity may be thus adjusted. Henry Lowes the mu. fician, who composed Comus, and of whom I shall say more in a proper place, being wearied with giving written copies, printed and published this drama, about three years after the presentation, omitting Milton's name, with the following title. “A Maske presented “ at Ludlow castle, 1634, on Michaelmasse night, before the right “ honorable the Earle of Bridgewater, Vicount Brackly, Lord Prefi• dent of Wales, and one of his maiefties molt honorable privie “ counsell,
“ Ebeu ! quid volui misero mibi ? Floribus auftrum
“ Perditus," “ London. Printed for Humphrey Robinson at the signe of the three “ Pidgeons in Pauls church-yard, 1637." In quarto. Now it is very probable, that when Rouse transmitted from Oxford, in 1638, the firit or quarto edition of Randolph's Poems to Sir Henry Wootton, he very officiously stitched up at the end Lawes's edition of Comus, a flight quarto of thirty pages only, and ranging, as he thought, not improperly with Randolph's two dramas, the MuseS LOOKING-CLASS and AMYNTAS, the two concluding pieces of the volume. Wootton did not know the name of the author of Comus, the Mask which he had seen at the end of Randolph, till Milton, as appears by the Letter before us, sent him a copy " intimating the name of the true ar“tificer," on the fixth day of April, 1638. I have before observed, that Lawes's edition had not the name of the author. This, we may presume, was therefore the Comus, which Wootton had seen at the end of Randolph.
I take this opportunity of remarking, that the Dedication to Lord Brackley, prefixed by Lawes to his edition of 1637, afterwards transferred to the edition of 1645, containing other poems of Milton in Latin and Englifh, but omitted in 1673, confirms, among other particulars, what has been before said, that Lord Brackley was a mere boy when he acted in- Comus, from these passages, written indeed
Now Sir, concerning your travels, wherin I may chalenge a little more priviledge of discours with
you; I suppose you will not blanch Paris in your way; therfore I have been bold to trouble you with a few lines to Mr. M. B, whom
you shall easily find attending the young Lord S. as his Governour, and you may surely receive from him good directions for the Thaping of your
farther jourley into Italy, where he did reside by my I choice fom time for the king, after mine own recess from Venice.
I should think that your best line will be thorow the whole length of France to Marseilles, and thence by sea to Genoa, whence the passage into Tuscany is as diurnal as a Gravesend barge : I haften as you do to Florence, or Siena, the rather to tell you a short story from the interest
have given me in your safety.
At Siena I was tabled in the house of one Alberto Scipioni an old Roman courtier in dangerous
when he was now three years older, that is, about fifteen ; in which, Lawes mentions the “ faire bopes, and rare endowments of your "mucb-promising youih, which give a full assurance to all that know «
you of a future excellence.” He then calls him Sweet Lord, wishing him to live long, “to be the honour of your name, &c." In the beginning of the Dedication, he says, “ This poem, which received * its first occasion of birth from yourself, and others of your noble “ family, and much honour from your own person in the perform“ ance, &c.” He then adds, that Milton was unwilling to acknow. ledge himself as the author. See abovc, p. 115. It never appeared under his name till the year 1645. The motto, from the second Eclogue of Virgil, implies his fears of exposing his work to the eye of the world; in which he metaphorically laments, that he had rafhly trusted his tender blooms with the rude blafts of popular applause. Lawes's edition of Camus is seldom to be found.