Sonnet 16: Cromwell, our chief of men, who through a cloud

By John Milton 1608–1674 John Milton

        To the Lord General Cromwell, May 1652,
On the proposals of certain ministers at the Committee for
        Propagation of the Gospel

Cromwell, our chief of men, who through a cloud
       Not of war only, but detractions rude,
       Guided by faith and matchless fortitude,
       To peace and truth thy glorious way hast plough'd,
And on the neck of crowned Fortune proud
       Hast rear'd God's trophies, and his work pursu'd,
       While Darwen stream with blood of Scots imbru'd,
       And Dunbar field, resounds thy praises loud,
And Worcester's laureate wreath; yet much remains
       To conquer still: peace hath her victories
       No less renown'd than war. New foes arise
Threat'ning to bind our souls with secular chains:
       Help us to save free Conscience from the paw
       Of hireling wolves whose gospel is their maw.

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Poet John Milton 1608–1674


Subjects Religion, History & Politics, Social Commentaries

Poetic Terms Sonnet

 John  Milton


John Milton’s career as a writer of prose and poetry spans three distinct eras: Stuart England; the Civil War (1642-1648) and Interregnum, including the Commonwealth (1649-1653) and Protectorate (1654-1660); and the Restoration. When Elizabeth I, the so-called Virgin Queen and the last of the Tudors, died, James VI, King of Scots, was enthroned as Britain’s king. Titled James I, he inaugurated the House of Stuart. His son and . . .

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SUBJECT Religion, History & Politics, Social Commentaries


Poetic Terms Sonnet

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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