[Milton-L] forwarded query re. Milton in Max Weber

Hannibal Hamlin hamlin.hannibal at gmail.com
Wed Sep 9 12:21:39 EDT 2015


Dear Miltonists,

On behalf of David Sacks, who posted this query to FICINO, I'm forwarding
his query to you. Is there something like this in the *De Doctrina*, which
seems to be (indirectly, via German) the source? Weber's quotation has a
long and complex afterlife, since a variety of authors (including
apparently Karl Barth) pick up the Milton line without checking further.

Hannibal

--------------------------------------
Dear Colleagues,

In THE PROTESTANT ETHIC AND THE SPIRIT OF CAPITALISM (trans. Talcott
Parsons), Max Weber offers this quotation as summing up what he calls
"Milton's well-known opinion of the doctrine" of predestination: "Though I
may be sent to Hell for it, such a God will never command my respect."

The accompanying endnote does not provide a citation to any work by
Milton.  Instead it says: "On Milton's theology see the essay of Eibach in
the THEOL. STUDIEN UND KRITIKEN, 1879.  Macaulay's essay on it...is
superficial. For more detail see the somewhat too schematic six-volume
English work of Masson, and the German biography of Milton which rest upon
it...."

Parsons, of course, was an eminent sociologist, not a literary scholar.
I'm guessing that he translated the quote attributed to Milton directly
from Weber's German without having a clue as to what Milton himself had
said in English.  Does anyone recognize the quote as coming from something
written by Milton? If not, does anyone have a suggestion about where the
thought--if not the actual words--might be found?  For a variety of
reasons, I'd like to track the it down.

With best wishes, David

------------------------------------------------

-- 
Hannibal Hamlin
Professor of English
The Ohio State University
Author of *The Bible in Shakespeare*, now available through all good
bookshops, or direct from Oxford University Press at
http://ukcatalogue.oup.com/product/9780199677610.do
Editor, *Reformation*
164 West 17th Ave., 421 Denney Hall
Columbus, OH 43210-1340
hamlin.22 at osu.edu/
hamlin.hannibal at gmail.com
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