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times, having bin steward to the Duca di Pagliano, who with all his family were strangled, fave this onely man that escaped by foresight of the tempest: with him I had often much chat of those affairs ; into which he took pleasure to look back from his native harbour ; and at my departure toward Rome (which had been the center of his experience) I had wonn confidence enough to beg' his advice, how I might carry my self securely there, without offence of others, or of mine own conscience. Signor Arrigo mio (sayes he) I penseri Aretti, et il vifo sciolto * will go fafely over the whole world ; Of which Delphian oracle (for so I have found it) your judgement doth need no commentary; and therfore (Sir) I will commit you with it to the beft of all securities, Gods dear love, remaining · Your Friend as much at command
as any of longer date
Henry Wootton +:
* That is, “ Thoughts close, Looks loose."
+ Milton mentions this Letter of fir Henry Wootton for its elegance, in his DepENSIO SECUNDA POPULI ANGLICANI. “ Abeuntem, vir “ clariflimus Henricus Woottonus, qui ad Venetoś orator Jacobi regis “ diu fuerat, et votis et præceptis eunti peregre sane utilislimis, Ele“GANTI EPISTOLA perfcriptis, amtciffime profequutus eft." PROSEWORKS, ii. 332. This Letter appeared first in the edition of 1645, where it is prefixed to Comus, p. 71. I know not why it was suppressed in that of 1673. It was restored to its proper place by Tone: fon, in his edition of 1705.
HAVE expresly sent this my foot-boy to pre
vent your departure without fom acknowledgement from me of the receipt of your obliging Letter, having my self through som busines, I know not bow, negle&ted the ordinary conveyance. In any part where I shall understand you fixed, I shall be glad, and diligent to entertain you with home-novelties; even for fom fomentation of our friendship, too soon interrupted in the cradle *.
That is, when you was but a child. Not that Milton and Wootton were friends in their childhood, or children together. Woot. ton, at fixteen, was sent from Winchester-school to Oxford, in 1584. This was twenty four years before Milton was born.