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John Milton (1608-1674)
Printed by Miles Flesher, for Richard Bentley, at the Post-Office in Russell-street, 1688
First illustrated edition
PR3560 1688

John Milton’s Paradise Lost was first printed in 1667, in part, perhaps as a reaction to the defeat of Oliver Cromwell’s revolution and the restoration of the monarchy. Milton attempted to reconcile elements of pagan and Christian tradition, portraying Satan as an unlikable but sympathetic character who defied a tyrannical God and waged unsuccessful war against him. In spite of this, the Roman Catholic Church did not place the work on the Index Librorum Prohibitorum until 1758. This a copy from the first illustrated edition of Paradise Lost. It is also the first edition of the work in folio. University of Utah copy bound with Paradise Regain’d. A Poem. In IV. Books. To which is added Samson Agonistes…(1688). An engraved portrait of Milton by Robert White is bound in opposite to the title page. The portrait includes an epitaph for Milton by John Dryden. Twelve full-paged engravings accompany the text, one at the beginning of each of the twelve books. All of the engravings are tipped in. The illustrations for books III, V, VI, VII, IX, X, XI are by John Baptista de Medina, engraved by M. Burghers. Book IV was illustrated by Bernard Lens, engraved by P.P. Bouche. Book XII was illustrated by Henry Aldrich, engraved by Burghers. The illustrations for Books I and II are engraved by Burghers. The illustrator for these is uncertain.