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Word Count: 649
Religion was the most important part of Miltons personal life and exerted the greatest influence on his literary endeavors John Milton was born in London to a prosperous merchant who had been disowned by his family when he converted from Catholicism to Protestantism Thanks to his fathers wealth young Milton got the best education money could buy a private tutor St Pauls Cathedral School and then Christs College at Cambridge At the latter he made quite a name for himself with his prodigious writing publishing several essays and poems to high acclaim After graduating with his Masters degree in 1632 Milton was once again accommodated by his father He was allowed to take over the familys estate near Windsor and pursue a quiet life of study He spent 1632 to 1638 In 1638 Milton made a trip to Italy studying in Florence Siena and Rome but felt obliged to return home upon the outbreak of civil war in England in 1639 By this time he was well known to the literary world Particularly notable works were his eulogy on Shakespeare and the magnificent pastoral poem Lycidas Upon his return from Italy though he began planning a work far beyond his others an epic poem the first ever written in English These plans were delayed by his marriage to Mary Powell and her subsequent desertion of him In reaction to these events
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