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CHAPTER X.

Milton's Sonnets-Domestic Incidents-Conduct of the Pres-

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CHAPTER I.

SCANTINESS OF THE MATERIAL OFFERED BY MEN LIKE MILTON TO THE

ALERE BIOGRAPHER-GREAT MEN PRODUCED IN AGES OF TRANSITION-
GENERAL FEATURES OF THE AGE IN WHICH MILTON LIVED-EFFECTS
OF THE REFORMATION-RETENTION OF THE ESSENCE OF POPERY-

It is a condition, at which it is futile to repine, belonging
to those who in all ages have been born to guide a country
amidst the stormy vicissitudes of a revolution, that they can be
but little known as individuals to succeeding generations.
Such men can scarcely be said to have, during their active
years, a personal and private life. Scarcely any of those
who are either desirous or capable of transmitting to pos-
terity the portraiture of the Man, have close and frequent
access to the leaders, whether military or civil, of national
transition. And as little, too, have those heroes such close
and leisurely access to themselves, as admits of their giving to
mankind that most valuable of biographies which can be best,
if not solely, recorded by the individual, and which would
exhibit the development of those inner principles which,
ultimately embodied in their public acts, have influenced or
decided the destinies of their country. The biography of
such men is, for the most part, little else than a fragment
of the history of their times.

To those who can appreciate the loftiest intellectual
powers, sustained by vast learning, and enriched with the

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