1826 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

William Winstanley

Richard Ryan, in Poetry and Poets: being a Collection of the choicest Anecdotes relative to the Poets of every Age and Nation (1826) 3:217-18.



Winstanley, author of The British Worthies, and The Lives of the English Poets, was contemporary with Milton, and in one of his works, gives an account of that great Poet. It should appear that Winstanley was attached to the Royal party; and this circumstance will account for the malevolence displayed in the following passage. After allowing some little merit to the greatest of all poems, Paradise Lost, he proceeds, and says of the Author: "But his fame is got out like the snuff of a candle, and will continue to stink to all posterity, for having so infamously belied that glories martyr and king, Charles I."