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Printed Pages from European Literature: A Portfolio of Original Leaves Taken from Rare and Notable Books and Manuscripts. New York: Society of Foliophiles, 1925.

This is a leaf from the first edition of Milton's Paradise Lost. It was taken from an imperfect copy published in London in 1667.

Frank W. Tober Collection.

Paradise Lost

John Milton, 1608-1674.
Paradise Lost. A Poem in Twelve Books. London: Printed by Miles Flesher, for Richard Bently and Jacob Tonson, 1688.

Paradise Lost, composed after 1652 when Milton had gone blind, was dictated from memory to a secretary. Of that transcription, only a manuscript for Book I survives and is now in the collection of the Morgan Library in New York. This is the first illustrated edition of Paradise Lost.

John Milton, 1608-1674.
The Story of our First Parents: Selected from Milton's Paradise Lost: For the Use of Young Persons, by Mrs. Siddons. London: J. Murray, 1822.

Sarah Siddons (1755-1831) is thought by many to have been the greatest English tragic actress of her time. She is celebrated for such Shakespearean roles as Desdemona in Othello and as Lady Macbeth. After her retirement from the stage, Sarah gave public readings from Shakespeare and Milton and wrote this children's version of Paradise Lost.

Poetical Works of John Milton

John Milton, 1608-1674.
The Poetical Works of John Milton. London: Printed by W. Bulmer for J. and J. Boydell, and G. Nicol, 1794-1797.

William Bulmer, a well-known London printer, joined with John Boydell (1719-1804), the publisher of engravings, and William Martin, the typefounder, to produce a series of large scale works of classic authors. With plates derived from popular artists and a new typeface by Martin, the production was of the highest quality for the era.

John Milton, 1608-1674.
Paradise Lost: A Poem in Twelve Books. San Francisco: Arion Press, 2002.

This edition of Paradise Lost pays typographic tribute to two earlier editions of Milton's epic poem: the second edition of 1674, the year of the poet's death, when the text was divided into twelve books rather than ten as in the first edition of 1667, and the second Baskerville edition of 1759. John Baskerville (1706/7-1775) was a great English printer whose type, known by his name, is a face that remains in general use today. The type is clean, spare, understated, readable, and well-proportioned.

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Last modified: 12/21/10
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