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Milton in the Library

Thomas Fulton

Abstract


Fulton describes how this special issue was inspired by a spring 2011 exhibit in the Alexander Library at Rutgers which consisted of about 150 books, pamphlets, broadsides, and manuscripts, and other artifacts having to do with John Milton, his political and cultural contexts, and his literary afterlife.  He summaries the contents of each article in this issue and how they fit together.  He also outlines ways in which the actual artifact reveals far more about the conditions of writing and reading than can be reproduced in modern editions or in digital form. As we move forward in the centuries after Milton’s death, we encounter many different Miltons —the young but proper Milton of the eighteenth century, replaced by the bold, powerful, prophetic, Blakean Milton early in the nineteenth century.

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