The English Poems of John Milton, Paperback

The English Poems of John Milton Paperback

Part of the Wordsworth Poetry Library series

4 out of 5 (2 ratings)


With an Introduction and Notes by Laurence Lerner, formerly Professor of English at the University of Sussex.

John Milton (1608-74) has a strong claim to be considered the greatest English poet after Skakespeare.

His early poems, collected and published in 1645, include the much loved pair L'Allegro and Il Penseroso ('the cheerful man and the thoughtful man'), Lycidas (his great elegy on a fellow poet) and Comus (the one masque which is still read today).

When the Civil War began Milton abandoned poetry for politics and wrote a series of pamphlets in defence of the Parliamentary party, then in defence of the execution of Charles I: these include his great defence of the freedom of the press, Areopagitica.

In the course of this work he lost his sight, and was blind for the last twenty years of his life.

During this time he wrote his two great epics, Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained, and his retelling of the story of Samson as a Greek tragedy.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 624 pages, bibliography
  • Publisher: Wordsworth Editions Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Poetry by individual poets
  • ISBN: 9781853264108


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Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.

Review by

I am exceedingly grateful to the media for their interest in Milton's 400th anniversary which, encouraged me to revisit the works of one of England's greatest authors.I find poetry quite difficult to read: it does not take well to speed reading techniques, as every word is significant but, I am willing to struggle with quality such as this. Paradise Lost is unlike anything else I have ever read and, apparently Milton added more new words to the English language than did Shakespeare!

Review by

I find epic poetry tough, but once through it worth it.