[Milton-L] John Milton at 400

William Moeck William.Moeck at ncc.edu
Sun Dec 9 17:45:19 EST 2007

New York Public Library

John Milton at 400: “A Life Beyond Life”
Sue and Edgar Wachenheim III Gallery (First Floor)
February 29, 2008 through June 14, 2008 

Emblazoned high above the threshold, the expression “life beyond life” taken from John Milton’s stirring defense of free speech, aptly ushers visitors into the Rose Main Reading Room of The New York Public Library. With a reputation rivaling that of the work of Chaucer and Shakespeare, the poetry of John Milton (1608–1674) was avidly collected by the Library's founding fathers, Samuel J. Tilden and James Lenox. This Wachenheim Gallery exhibition fittingly celebrates the quadricentennial of Milton’s birth by giving as much emphasis to his masterworks as to revealing the different ways his poetry has been appreciated by admirers and critics. The first part of the exhibition consists of three sections introducing visitors to Milton’s life, work, and those influences most affecting his development; the exhibition’s second part is divided into three historical sections, showing visitors how in each century, Milton’s readers brought their own concerns, values, and biases to his poetry. 

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