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Pocket Maps and Public Poetry in the English Renaissance$
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Katarzyna Lecky

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780198834694

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198834694.001.0001

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Milton’s Map of Liberty

Milton’s Map of Liberty

Chapter:
(p.193) 5 Milton’s Map of Liberty
Source:
Pocket Maps and Public Poetry in the English Renaissance
Author(s):

Katarzyna Lecky

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198834694.003.0005

Chapter 5 turns to Milton’s exploration of custom as it informs Britain’s ancient territories of civic liberty in A Maske Presented at Ludlow Castle (1637/45). Milton’s poetic map of the uneasy lands around the Welsh border juxtaposes competing visions of the land as massive or minuscule with rival definitions of its character as a Crown holding or a distinct nation. Like the pocket cartography it physically resembles, the poet’s publication is a rebus that argues on both lexical and image-based levels for a British government whose magistrates serve as temperate and virtuous representatives of the commons, acting in relative autonomy within the polity.

Keywords:   Wales, Ludlow, miniature Speed, William Camden, miniature Britannia, John Milton, naturalized citizenship, custom, liberty

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