Milton - PR3550 D77 1777 M2

THE LIFE or MILTON. 421 he had difcovered treafon. It was with difficulty too that the author could fell the copy ; and he fold it at fall only for five pounds, but was to receive five pounds more after the fale of 1300 of the firft imprefli.. on, and five pound more after the fale of as many of the fecond irnpreflion, and five more after the fale of as many of the third, and the number of each impreffion was not to exceed 5500. And what a poor confideration was this for fuch an inellimable performance ! and how much more do others get by the works of great authors, than the authors themfelves ! This original contraa with Samuel Simmons the printer is dated April 27. 1667, and is in the hands of Mr. Tonfon the bookfeller, as is likewife the manufcript of the firft book copied fair for the prefs, with the imprimature by Thomas Tomkyns chaplain to the Archbifhop of Canterbury : fo that tho' Milton was forced to make ufe of different hands to write his verfes from time to time as he had occafion, yet we may fuppofe that the copy for the prefs was written all, or at leaf' each book by the fame hand. The firft edition in ten books was printed in a fmall quarto ; and before it could be difpofed of, had three or more different title pages of the years 5667, 1668, and 1669. The firft fort was without the name of Simmons the printer, and began with the poem immediately following the title page, without any argument, or preface, or table of errata : to others was prefixed a short advertifement of the printer to the reader concerning the argument and the reafon why the poem rimes not ; and then followed the argument of the feveral books, and the preface concerning the kind of verfe, and the table of errata : others again had the argument, and the preface, and the table of errata, without that fhort advertifement of the printer to the reader : and this was all the difference between them, except now and then of a point or a letter, which were altered as the fheets were printing off. So that, notwithflanding thefe variations, there was only one impreflion in quarto ; and two years almof elapfed, before 13oa copies could be fold, or before the author was intitled to his fecond five pounds, for which his receipt is fill in being, and is dated April 26, 1669. And this was probably all that he received ; for he lived not to enjoy the benefits of the fecond edition, which was not publifhed till the year 1674, and that fame year he died. S s 3