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which were afterwards taken from him without any reason being given. The amount of his salary is nowhere expressly mentioned. It is only said in the Order of Council “ that he have the same salarie which Mr. Wecherlyn formerly had for the same service,” but what that salary was is not specified. We shall see however

presently that Milton's salary was nearly £300 a year. Like Blake and other sincere friends of their country, he acquiesced in, or rather approved of, Cromwell's assumption of the sole authority in the State; and he was by him continued in office. In an Order in Council, dated April 17, 1655, for the reduction of salaries, it is directed" that the former yearly salary of Mr. John Milton of £288, etc. * be reduced to £150 per annum, and paid to him during his life out of his Highness' Exchequer.” As among the warrants which his Highness is in this Order advised to issue for the payment of salaries there is one “for the fee of Mr. Philip Meadows, Secretary for the Latin Tongue, after the rate of £200 per annum,” it has been inferred that Milton's was a retiring pension, and that Meadows had taken the place at a reduced salary. But this cannot be the case, for the payment to Meadows is for past services.f It would seem therefore to be the fact that Meadows had been for some time joint secretary with Milton, and that the

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* In an Order of Feb. 13, 1653–4, signed OLIVER P., there is “ Mr. John Milton for halfe a yeare, from 4th July to the first of Jan. last inclusive, at 15s. 10 d. per diem, £144. 9s. 3d."

+ Meadows had been for some time in employment, for we find among the Orders of Council, “ 1653. Oct. 17. Ordered that Mr. Philip Meadows, now employed by the Councell in Latin translations, doe alsoe assist Mr. Thurloe in the dispatch of the Forreigne businesse ; and that he have in consideration thereof one hundred pounds per annum, to be added to the one hundred pounds per annum he now receives of the Councell."

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latter was now relieved from the ordinary business of the office, and was only to be required to give his aid when papers of importance were to be written. It is certain that he continued to write State-papers up to the year of the Restoration,

It would seem however that this reduction of his salary did not take place to the extent proposed; for on the 25th of October, 1659, there is an Order for the payment of John Milton and Andrew Marvell at the rate of £200 a year each. Marvell had then succeeded Meadows, and probably through Milton's influence ; for there is a letter from him to Bradshaw so far back as Feb. 21, 1652-3, in which he recommended him for the situation. “ If,” says he,“ upon the death of Mr. Wakerley (Wech"

( erlyn] the Council shall think that I shall need any assistant in the performance of my place,—though for my part I find no encumbrances of that which belongs to me except it be in point of attendance at conferences with ambassadors, which I must confess, in my condition, I am not fit for,-it would be hard for them to find a man so fit every way for that purpose as this gentleman.” It therefore appears that Wecherlyn did not go out of office, but remained as assistant to Milton ;* and that on his death the Council, or rather Cromwell, who then had the supreme power, appointed Meadows to the vacant situation.

There is no doubt but that the arrangement effected in 1655 left Milton more time at his own disposal. He appears to have devoted it partly to his History of England, partly to the making collections for a copious Latin

* “ 1652. April 7. Ordered that the answer to the King of Denmark, now read, bee approved of, and translated into Latine by Mr. Wecherlyn.”



dictionary, and for framing a Body of Divinity out of the Bible, and finally to the composing of the great poem, on the subject of which he had fixed at last after long hesitation. * These however did not occupy him wholly. In 1658 he published a manuscript of Sir Walter Raleigh's, named The Cabinet Council ; and in the following year he printed a Treatise of Civil Power in Ecclesiastical Causes; and another, Considerations touching the Means of removing Hirelings out of the Church. He wrote also, but did not publish, A Letter to a Friend concerning the Ruptures of the Commonwealth, and The present Means and Brief Delineation of a Free Commonwealth, in a letter addressed to General Monk.t In 1660, when the Restoration seemed almost inevit- X

Х able, he made a final effort against monarchy, in a piece also addressed to Monk, entitled The ready and easy Way to establish a Free Commonwealth. But all was in vain. The nation was weary of turmoil, and anxious to return to its former condition. The Royalists, seeing the state of the public mind, took courage, and the pulpit was once more converted into a political engine. Dr. Matthew Griffith, one of the late King's chaplains, published one of these political sermons which he had preached at Mercers' Hall; and Milton forthwith sent to the press a reply to it, named Brief Notes upon a late Sermon titled The Fear of God and the King. With this piece terminated his career of political controversy.

During the eight years that Milton lived in his house in Petty France he had enjoyed the society of some select friends, such as Lawrence, Skinner, Marvell,—men of

* Aubrey says he began it two years before the coming-in of the X King.

+ They were both printed for the first timě by Toland.


virtue, talent, and learning. With men of power and political influence he appears to have had little inti

In his Second Defence he terms Col. Overton his friend, and he speaks of Whitlock, Pickering, Strickland, Sydenham, Sydney, Montague, and Lawrence, as known to him by friendship or by fame, which shows that he was intimate with some of them. With Lady Ranelagh, the mother and aunt of two of his former pupils, and sister to Lord Orrery and the celebrated Robert Boyle, he was on terms of close intimacy. He was also visited by distinguished foreigners, many of whom, Aubrey says, came to England for no other purpose but to see Cromwell and Milton. mightily,” he says, “importuned to go into France and Italy; foreigners came much to see him, and much admired him; and offered him great preferments to come over to them.” How fal his account is correct we are unable to say, but certainly the fame of Milton was widely divulged all over Europe.

" He was

* In his letter to Heimbach, Dec. 18, 1657, he tells him that he cannot be of any service to him, “ propter paucissimas familiaritates meas cum gratiosis,"

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As it would not have been safe for the author of Iconoclastes and The Defence of the People of England to have appeared in public after the return of the King, Milton quitted his house in Petty France, and sought an asylum with a friend who livad, in Bartholomew Close, near West Smithfield. His concealment here was complete ; perhaps, though a proclamation was issued for his apprehension, no very diligent search was made after him. There were among the Royalists men of humanity who could feel compassion for him who was deprived of Nature's prime blessing, and men of taste who were capable of admiration for exalted genius. The names of · Monk's cousin, Secretary Morrice, and his brother-inlaw, Sir Thomas Clarges, are mentioned as of those who interested themselves in Milton's favour; Andrew Marvell too, who had a seat in Parliament, is said to have exerted himself in behalf of his friend. * But the chief merit is usually assigned to Sir William Davenant, who, when he had been taken prisoner on his passage from France to America, in 1651, was ordered by the Parlia

* See Phillips.

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