Milton and the Conformable Puritanism of Richard Stock and Thomas Young

Jeffrey Alan Miller

in Young Milton

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199698707
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191740756 | DOI:
Milton and the Conformable Puritanism of Richard Stock and Thomas Young

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As long as the term ‘puritan’ remains effectively synonymous with ‘radical’, misunderstanding Milton’s association with the term will continue. Seventeenth-century puritans comprised a diverse group and puritanism encompassed equally diverse ideas, practices, and allegiances. One subset of puritans described by Peter Lake as ‘moderate’ included the two puritan clergymen most closely associated with Milton’s early life—Richard Stock and Thomas Young. This essay reintroduces this category, explains the nature of Milton’s exposure to it through a look at the careers of each minister, and refines our understanding of his association with a contested and confusing term.

Keywords: Puritans; puritanism; sermons; ministers; letter writing; religious reform; conformity

Chapter.  13952 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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