John Milton and Charles Diodati: Reading the Textual Exchanges of Friends

Cedric C. Brown

in Young Milton

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199698707
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191740756 | DOI:
John Milton and Charles Diodati: Reading the Textual Exchanges of Friends

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)


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Milton's friendship with Charles Diodati was multi‐faceted and derived from well‐established social codes. There are textual exchanges in playful competitive Latin and Italian verse; memorialization based on ancient friendship theory present in the two Latin letters to Diodati of 1637 after an apparent gap in communication; then memory fixed in the elaborately wrought and privately printed memorial gift‐poem, Epitaphium Damonis; and finally memory as very selectively manipulated in subsequent publication, in the Poems of 1645 and the 1674 volume of familiar letters. This study is part of a wider one of friendship exchange in the early modern period, and its celebration of a close friendship is fertile.

Keywords: Gift‐exchanges; friendship; letter writing; linguistic codes; decorum; Latin literature

Chapter.  12561 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)

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