Education: the ‘Vacation Exercise’ and Early Latin Poetry

  • Cedric C. Brown
Part of the Macmillan Literary Lives book series (LL)


‘Far from all disgrace …, I studied for seven years in the usual disciplines and arts, up to what is called the degree of Master, awarded with honours [cum laude], in fact’. So declared John Milton of the success of his education in the University of Cambridge, writing in the Second Defence of 1654, when he was well into middle age (Y iv 613). Not for the first time had he been the subject of detraction. He was particularly sore about a rumour that he had been sent down for disciplinary reasons as an undergraduate.


Literary Life Latin Poetry Religious Atmosphere Young Goat Disciplinary Reason 
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  1. 5.
    Leo Miller, ‘On Some of the Verses by Alexander Gil which John Milton Read’, MQ, 24 (1990), 22–5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 6.
    George Wither, The History of the Pestilence (1625), ed. J. Milton French (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1932).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Cedric C. Brown 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cedric C. Brown
    • 1
  1. 1.University of ReadingUK

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