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Shaping the Common LawFrom Glanvill to Hale, 1188-1688$
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Thomas Garden Barnes and Allen D. Boyer

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780804757140

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804757140.001.0001

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John Milton

John Milton

Chapter:
(p.177) Chapter Twelve John Milton
Source:
Shaping the Common Law
Publisher:
Stanford University Press
DOI:10.11126/stanford/9780804757140.003.0013

This chapter examines John Milton's Areopagitica, published in 1644, which reflects the complexity that a brilliant talent brings to a subject with which he has both a political engagement and a personal stake. Milton's reputation as an advocate of freedom of speech is balanced against his record as a zealous pamphleteer in The Tenure of Kings and Magistrates. Ultimately, Areopagitica remains known for Milton's call, “Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties.” That eloquence must be heard as the voice of Milton's better angel.

Keywords:   Areopagitica, freedom of speech, pamphleteer, Tenure of Kings

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