Milton, “To the Lord General Cromwell…” read by George Rylands

Source: Copeland’s Milton Page
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To the Lord General Cromwell, on the Proposals of Certain Ministers at the Committee for the 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 ploughed,
And on the neck of crowned Fortune proud
Hast reared God’s trophies, and his work pursued,
While Darwen stream, with blood of Scots imbrued,
And Dunbar field, resounds thy praises loud,
And Worcester’s laureate wreath: yet much remains
To conquer still; Peace hath her victories
No less renowned than War: new foes arise,
Threatening to bind our souls with secular chains.
Help us to save free conscience from the paw
Of hireling wolves, whose Gospel is their maw.

Milton, “Captain or Colonel” read by George Rylands

Source: Copeland’s Milton Page
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Captain or Colonel, or Knight in Arms,
Whose chance on these defenceless dores may sease,
If ever deed of honour did thee please,
Guard them, and him within protect from harms,
He can requite thee, for he knows the charms
That call Fame on such gentle acts as these,
And he can spred thy Name o’re Lands and Seas,
What ever clime the Suns bright circle warms.
Lift not thy spear against the Muses Bowre,
The great Emathian Conqueror bid spare
The house of Pindarus, when Temple and Towre
Went to the ground: And the repeated air
Of sad Electra’s Poet had the power
To save th’ Athenian Walls from ruine bare. Renascence Editions.

Milton, “On Shakespeare” read by Robert Speaight

Source: Copeland’s Milton Page Text.
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Milton, “The Peaceful Night” read by Douglas D. Anderson


But peaceful was the night
Wherein the Prince of Light
His reign of peace upon the earth began.
The winds with wonder whist,
Smoothly the waters kist,
Whispering new joys to the mild Ocean,–
Who now hath quite forgot to rave,
While birds of calm sit brooding on the charmed wave.

The stars, with deep amaze,
Stand fixed in steadfast gaze,
Bending one way their precious influence;
And will not take their flight,
For all the morning light,
Or Lucifer that often warned them thence;
But in their glimmering orbs did glow,
Until their Lord himself bespake, and bid them go.

And, though the shady gloom
Had given day her room,
The sun himself withheld his wonted speed,
And hid his head for shame,
As his inferior flame
The new-enlightened world no more should need:
He saw a greater Sun appear
Than his bright throne or burning axletree could bear. Text.

Milton, “On His Blindness” read by unknown

Source: Classic Poetry Aloud. Text. Download Title

Milton, “L’Allegro” read by Gardner Campbell

Source: Gardner Writes. Text.
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Milton, “Il Penseroso” read by Gardner Campbell

Source: Gardner Writes. Text.
Includes lengthy introduction. Download link

Milton: the best source for audio Milton

This page looks different because someone else has already done the work of collecting wonderful readings of Milton poems.

That someone is Thomas A. Copeland of Youngstown State University, and we refer you directly to Copeland’s Milton Page