The Morgan Library & Museum has two exhibitions of interest:
John Milton’s Paradise Lost: October 7, 2008- January 4, 2009
“John Milton’s Paradise Lost celebrates the 400th anniversary of the birth of John Milton (1608–1674) with an exhibition drawn from the Morgan’s collection of the English poet’s work, which includes the only surviving manuscript of Paradise Lost. This manuscript of the first book of Milton’s epic, transcribed and corrected under the direction of the blind poet, was used to set the type for the first printing of the poem in 1667. Copies of the first and later editions of the poem, including the first edition of Milton’s work printed in the United States, are also on view. The exhibition also features Albrecht Dürer’s engraving The Fall of Man, William Blake’s Milton: Old Age, Richard Westall’s watercolor depiction of Satan, and a rarely seen miniature portrait of Milton.”
“Ebenezer Scrooge, Tiny Tim, Mr. Fezziwig, Bob Cratchit, the Ghost of Christmas Past-in the age of film and television these characters from Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol are universally familiar. The story has been told as a stage musical, a serious dramatic film, and a modern comedy.
But, in the end, it all comes back to a magical book written by Dickens in a six-week flurry of activity in late 1843. Greeted with universal acclaim at the time of publication, A Christmas Carol might rightfully be called an “instant masterpiece.” William Makepeace Thackeray called it a “national benefit” and an American factory owner gave his workers an extra day’s holiday when he had finished reading it.
When the manuscript was returned after printing Dickens arranged for it to be finely bound in red morocco leather and presented it as a gift to his solicitor. It was purchased by Pierpont Morgan in the 1890s. Beginning on November 20, visitors to The Morgan Library & Museum can view the original manuscript by Dickens in a special presentation in the museum’s famed McKim Building.”
The Morgan Library & Museum is located at 225 Madison Ave at 36th Street, New York City.