1649
ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Eikonoklastes.

Eikonoklastes in answer to a Book intitl'd Eikon Basilike, the Portrature of his Sacred Majesty in his Solitudes and Sufferings. The Author J. M.

John Milton


John Milton, defender of the regicides, appeals to Spenser's rough justice, comparing the actions of Cromwell in Parliament to Talus with his iron flail. Statements like this would dampen enthusiasm for Milton's poetry well into the next century.




He next goes on therfore with vehemence to repeat the mischeifes don by these tumults. "They first Petition'd, then protected, dictate next, and lastly overaw by the Parlament. They remov'd obstructions, they purg'd the houses, cast out rott'n members." If there were a man of iron, such as Talus, by our Poet Spencer, is fain'd to be, the page of Justice, who with his iron flaile could doe all this, and expeditiously, without those deceitfull formes and circumstances of law, worse than cermonies in Religion; I say God send it don, whether by one Talus, or by a thousand.


[pp.33-34]