"John Milton!" exclaimed Sir Henry in astonishment-"What! John Milton, the blasphemous and bloody-minded author of the Defensio Populi Anglicani!- the advocate of the infernal High Court of Fiends; the creature and parasite of that grand impostor, that loathsome hypocrite, that detestable monster, that prodigy of the universe, that disgrace of mankind, that landscape of iniquity, that sink of sin, and that compendium of baseness, Oliver Cromwell! "
" Even the same John Milton, answered Charles..."
These lines are from Scott's Woodstock, which was published during the economic downturn of 1826. The novel's setting is the English Civil War (c. 1651), and the quote given to Sir Henry Lee is clearly unfavorable to a supporter of Cromwell. Samuel Johnson, a devout Tory, described Milton as "an acrimonious and surly republican."
John Milton was born December 9, 1608.