On His Blindness

On His Blindness

  • Submitted By: blaine
  • Date Submitted: 05/24/2008 2:29 PM
  • Category: Book Reports
  • Words: 1730
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"On his Blindness" by John Milton

John Milton was a great writer and one of the few who was recognized in his own time. He was born in London in 1608 to a wealthy family. Milton was an intelligent youth and went to Cambridge University when he was seventeen. In his college years he wrote some of his poems. Milton's original goal was to become a priest, but he changed his mind while he was in college. Concerned with the Puritan cause, Milton wrote pamphlets advocating divorce the freedom of religion and freedom of the press. In 1651 Milton became blind, yet he continued to write - his daughters would take dictation. In 1660 Charles II was restored into power and Milton was arrested for defending the Commonwealth, but was soon released. The date that Milton wrote "On his Blindness" is uncertain, but 1955 is the date that is widely accepted.

The poem On his Blindness, by John Milton is an Italian sonnet which addresses the Christian perspective of how to accept ones disabilities. The writer is effective in doing so, as he utilizes Biblical allusions, figurative language and colorful connotation.

The poem "On his Blindness" is about a man's acceptance of his disability through his conversation with "Patience". The form the poem takes is that of a sonnet. In the octave, the speaker draws an extended allusion to the Biblical parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30). In the parable, a man gives each servant talents (money) to manage for him according to their abilities before he goes on a trip. The servant who received five coins and the one who received two doubled their master's money through wise investments. However, the servant with only one talent buried it. When their master came back, he congratulated and promoted the first two servants and cast out the last, branding him lazy. The word "talent" has two possible meanings- it could mean money (one thousand dollars) or ones' natural ability. It is understood...

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