University of Toronto, 17th Century English Literature – Canada Research Chair (Associate / Full Professor)


17th Century English Literature – Canada Research Chair (Associate / Full Professor)

The Department of English at the University of Toronto, St George campus, invites applications for a tenure-stream appointment in the field of 17th Century Literature and Culture; a strong interest in Milton would be an advantage. The appointment will be at the rank of Associate or Full Professor and will begin on July 1, 2019.

Please click below for further details:

17th Century English Literature – Job 1803203


BMS Autumn Meeting 2018: Call for Papers


The Autumn 2018 meeting of the British Milton Seminar will be held in Birmingham on Saturday 20 October 2018.

Venue: TBC.  There will be two sessions, from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm, and from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm.

We currently intend that each session will have two papers (of approx. 25-30 minutes each), for which proposals are invited.

Please send proposals to Professor Sarah Knight ( and/or Dr Hugh Adlington ( no later than 31 August 2018.

Hugh Adlington and Sarah Knight

Joint Conveners

Barbara Kiefer Lewalski, 1931-2018

We pass on the sad news that Barbara Kiefer Lewalski, renowned Miltonist and William R. Kenan, Jr. Research Professor of History and English Literature at Harvard University from 1983 to 2010, passed away on Friday 2nd March.

Messages of condolence can be sent to her son,

David Lewalski

166 University Avenue

Providence, RI 02906 USA

Contributions in her memory can be made to Doctors Without Borders or the Rhode Island Philharmonic. Barbara also supported the Southern Poverty Law Center, ACLU, and Planned Parenthood.

A remembrance service is planned for Monday, March 12, at 4:00 p.m., at Monahan, Drabble and Sherman Funeral Home, 230 Waterman Street, Providence RI.  Calling hours are from 1-4.

7th Annual Milton Lecture: Milton v. The New Science, 15 March 2018

7th Annual Milton Lecture

‘The Starry Messenger: Milton v. The New Science’

Dr William Poole, Fellow of New College, Oxford

6 pm, Thursday 15 March 2018

Mercers’ Hall, Ironmonger Lane, EC2V 8HE (Tube St Paul’s or Bank)

Reservation essential: Call 01895 831774 or email

Click here for the event poster: 7th Annual Milton Lecture

Birmingham City University, Guest Seminar: ‘Apt Numbers: On Line Citations of Paradise Lost’, David Currell

Birmingham City University, School of English Guest Seminar

Wed 21 Feb 2018, 4.30 pm, C423

‘Apt Numbers: On Line Citations of Paradise Lost‘, by Dr David Currell, American University of Beirut

Abstract ‘Apt numbers, fit quantity of syllables, and the sense variously drawn out from one verse into another’: so Milton describes the features of his verse line in Paradise Lost. This presentation considers how practices of citation and extraction engage the epic as a lineated text, in ways that typically interrupt or ignore its usual linear publication. Looking at the OED, Oxford Dictionary of Quotations and Twitter, and connecting the logic of these textual spaces to practices already established in the early modern period (namely, ‘consultation reading’ and commonplacing), I consider the evolving history of line citations and online citations of Paradise Lost. Taking the lead from Milton’s own phrasing, but shifting from prosody to data visualization, I close with some ideas and open questions about a quantitative approach to the reception history of literary works.

Bio David Currell is Assistant Professor of English at the American University of Beirut. He works especially on classical reception (the focus of his long-term project, Epic Satire, and of essays in Shakespeare Survey and Critical Survey) and on the global reception of Milton (represented by essays in English Studies and the collection Fall Narratives). With Islam Issa he is coediting the collection Digital Milton.

School of English

Birmingham City University

The Curzon Building

4 Cardigan Street

Birmingham B4 7BD

British Milton Seminar, Special Session: ‘Milton and Difficulty’

BMS 57

Saturday 10 March 2018

Venue: **PLEASE NOTE** University of Birmingham, Edgbaston campus (Peter Gelling Library: Room 315, Arts Building) – please below for directions. There will be two sessions, from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm and from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm

This special session of the BMS is the first in a series of events in 2018 co-organised by Hannah Crawforth (KCL) and Sarah Knight (Leicester) around the subject of difficulty in early modern literature. This year marks the fortieth anniversary of George Steiner’s influential essay ‘On Difficulty’ (1978), an attempt to provide a taxonomy of difficulty and to argue for its central importance in literature and philosophy. Steiner’s essay discusses several early modern authors and their classical and continental models, including Dante, Horace, Spenser, Chaucer, Ovid, Shakespeare and Milton.

The term is variously used in early modern English, as we might expect. Thomas More suggests that the ‘dyffyculte’ of St Paul’s ‘wrytyng’ leads readers to find ‘sumtyme some mater of contencyon’ (Supplication of Souls; 1529), while in The art or crafte of rhetoryke (1532), Leonard Cox states that ‘all excellent & commendable thyng be hard & of difficulty’. In Of Education (1644), to choose just one example, Milton writes of learning other tongues that ‘if the language be difficult, so much the better’, and of the riches available to students once they have mastered Greek and Latin, ‘the difficulties of grammar being soon overcome’.

We hope to stimulate discussion of the topic of Milton and difficulty in a broad and varied sense.

Our aim is to try to deepen understanding and discussion of ‘difficulty’ as an aesthetic, critical and ideological category in early modern literature and thought. We encourage all participants to read Steiner’s essay beforehand: it was published in The Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 36.3 (Spring, 1978): 263-276. We also encourage participants to consider their own examples of difficulty in Milton, and to bring those along to the seminar to discuss with the group.


Sarah Knight (Leicester)

Peter Auger (Birmingham)


Hannah Crawforth (KCL)

Joe Moshenka (Cambridge)

Paul Hammond (Leeds)


The Peter Gelling Library (Room 315) is on the third floor of the Arts Building on the Edgbaston campus of the University of Birmingham.

For directions to the Edgbaston campus, please see:

For a map of the Edgbaston campus (the Arts Building is marked as R16), please see:

For further information about the British Milton Seminar, please contact either:

Dr Hugh Adlington ( or Professor Sarah Knight (

Book launch of Milton in Translation (OUP), Wednesday 6th December 2017

Birmingham City University’s Faculty of Arts, Design and Media is delighted to invite you to the book launch of Milton in Translation (OUP) on Wednesday 6th December 2017Milton in Translation is an unprecedented collaboration demonstrating the breadth of Milton’s international reception. 
Tickets are free and include refreshments and drinks. Registration is required via this link:

The Canada Milton Seminar XIII

The Canada Research Chair Program, Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies and Department of English at the University of Toronto present:

The Canada Milton Seminar XIII, April 20-21, 2018.

For details and to register please visit

Blair Hoxby (Stanford): “Baroque Tragedy”

Kirsten Poole (Delaware): “Milton and the Hieroglyphs”

John Rumrich (Texas, Austin): “On Satan’s Flight through Chaos: Does God Play Dice with the Universe?”

Leah Whittington (Harvard): “iMilton’s Continuations”

Other speakers include Madeline Bassnett (Western), Erin Murphy (Boston), Lee Morrissey (Clemson), and Ryan Netzley (Southern Illinois).

For event poster, see: Canada Milton Seminar Poster 2018

British Milton Seminar, 21 October 2017: Programme

BMS 56

Saturday 21 October 2017

Venue: In the Birmingham and Midland Institute. There will be two sessions, from 11.00 am to 12.30 pm and from 2.00 pm to 4.00 pm



Ayelet C. Langer (Haifa), ‘Milton’s Aristotelian Motion’;

Warren Chernaik (KCL), ‘Evil dayes: Milton, the Muse, and “fit audience”’.


Mandy Green (Durham), ‘“A Long Day’s Dying”: Adam after the Fall’;

John Holmes (Birmingham), ‘Epic Poetry and the Origins of Evolutionary Theory: From Paradise Lost to The Descent of Man’.

The Birmingham and Midland Institute (BMI) was founded by Act of Parliament in 1854, for ‘the Diffusion and Advancement of Science, Literature and Art amongst all Classes of Persons resident in Birmingham and the Midland Counties,’ and continues to pursue these aims.  The BMI is located in the heart of Birmingham’s city centre, just a few minutes’ walk from Birmingham New Street, Snow Hill and Moor Street railway stations:

Birmingham and Midland Institute

Margaret Street

Birmingham B3 3BS

Please follow this link for a map of the BMI’s location, and for further information about the BMI and its Library:

For further information about the British Milton Seminar, please contact either:

Professor Sarah Knight (, or Dr Hugh Adlington (

 Hugh Adlington and Sarah M. Knight (Co-convenors)

Paradise Lost 350th Anniversary, 1667-2017: Public Lecture

Friday 20th October 2017
6.00 – 8.00 pm
Library of Birmingham

The British Milton Seminar is pleased to announce a free public lecture, sponsored by the Universities of Birmingham and Leicester, to celebrate the 350th anniversary of the publication of John Milton’s Paradise Lost (1667).
The lecture will be delivered by Professor Karen Edwards (University of Exeter), on ‘Slow Love in Paradise Lost‘.

The lecture will address the relationship between loving and attaining wisdom in Paradise Lost, between long-suffering love and ‘suffering for truth’s sake’. In his portrait of Adam and Eve’s relationship and of Satan’s degeneration, Milton shows readers how, precisely, love furthers and hatred frustrates the ability to know and to understand.

Attendance is free but spaces are limited and booking is essential:

Click here for event poster:Paradise Lost 350th anniversary poster