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Last updated on 2017-03-20

About the Book

Famous as a treatise against censorship, Areopagitica: A Speech of Mr. John Milton for the Liberty of Unlicensed Printing to the Parliament of England was first published in London in 1644. It was composed as a "closet oration," a short work written as though it were delivered before parliament. Milton's audience has far exceeded the lawmakers of Early Modern England, and he remains renowned today primarily for his famous epic poem, Paradise Lost. But Milton was also an eloquent champion of learning, free speech, and the importance of debate and tolerance for differing points of view. These ideas are most explicitly and forcefully communicated in his Areopagtitica.

But the Areopagitica is no easy read for today's students. Simak publications has therefore provided a companion, modern-day translation to add clarity. The original text is present in full, and prominent quotations from the work are highlighted for emphasis.

More than ever we need champions of liberty like John Milton. Milton invites us to understand the conditions through which knowledge thrives or withers, and the unhappy fate of societies that have restricted the free circulation of ideas -- a topic as relevant in the 21st century as it was four centuries ago.

About the Author

Gideon O. Burton
John Milton

John Milton (1608-1674) authored the famous Paradise Lost, but his role in appreciating and promoting books and freedom of speech is most evident in his eloquent appeal for uncensored publication.

Table of Contents

  • Introduction: A Manifesto Made Modern
  • Section One

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