Milton - PR3550 D77 1777 M2

THE LIFE or MILTON. 413 Morable inflance or two upon his own knowledge. The Dutch were fending a plenipotentiary to England to treat of peace; but the emiffaries of the government had the art to procure a copy of his inftru&ions in Holland, which were delivered by Milton to his kinf- Man who was then with him, to tranflate them for the ufe of the Council, before the faid plenipotentiary had taken !hipping for England ; and an anfwer to all that he had in charge was prepared, And lay ready for him before he made his public entry into Londons Another time a perfon came to London with a very fumptuous train, pretending himfelf an agent from the Prince of Conde, who was then in arms against Cardinal Maaarine : but the government tufpeaing him fet their inftrumetits to work fo fuccefsfully, that in a few days they received intelligence from Paris, that he was a fpy employed by Charles II. whereupon the very next morning Milton's kinfman was fent to him with an order of Council, commanding him to depart the kingdom within three days, or expect the punifhment of a fpy. This kinfman was in all probability Mr, Philips or his bro- ther, who were Milton's nephews, and lived very much with him, and one or both of them were affifrant to him in his office, His blindnefs no doubt was a great hindrance and inconvenience to hint in his Wind's, tho3 fometimes a political ufe might be made of it ; as men's natural infirmities are often pleaded in excufe for not doing what they have no great inclination to do. Thus when Cromwell, as we may eolith from Whitlock, for fonts reafons delayed artfully to fign the treaty concluded with Sweden, And the Swedifh embaffador made frequent complaints of it, it was excufed to him, becaufe Mr. Milton, on account of his blindnefs proceeded flower iii bufinefs, and had not yet put the articles of the treaty into Latin. Upon which the embaffador was greatly furprifed, that things of fuck confequence fhould be intrulted to a blind man, for he muff neceffarily employ an amanuenfis, and that amanuenfis might divulge the articles ; and laid it was very wonderful, that there fhould be only one man in England Who could write Latin, and he a blind one. But his blindnefs had not diminifhed, but rather increafed the vizor of his mind and his Rate-letters will Q..9 q rents in,