[Milton-L] Jennifer Wallace, _Digging Up Milton_

Carol Barton, Ph.D., CPCM cbartonphd1 at verizon.net
Wed Jun 8 13:12:49 EDT 2016

Having just read a review of Jennifer Wallace’s Digging Up Milton (“Everybody Wants a Piece of Milton,” June 6, 2016, Los Angeles Review of Books), may I respectfully direct any serious Milton scholar who has read or intend to reads that very fictionalized account to my “Ill fare the hands that heaved the stones’: John Milton, A Preliminary Thanatography” in Milton Studies 42 (2003)? 

For one thing, Wallace’s narrator (“Lizzie” Elizabeth Grant) was herself a fiction—and the lay church officials who invaded Milton’s coffin were less “rapacious” than drunk.

There has been quite enough misinformation distributed on the subject through the centuries, and there is a good deal more that I have not yet transformed from notes to the complete thanatography; read Wallace’s book for the fun of it, if you like, but please don’t rely on it as anything more than fiction.

Best to all,

Carol Barton

Carol Barton, PhD, CPCM

One of the truest tests of integrity is its blunt refusal to be compromised.

Chinua Achebe, writer and professor (16 Nov 1930-2013) 
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