"None can love freedom but good men;
the rest love not freedom, but license,
which never hath more scope than under tyrants."
John Milton
(1608-1674) English Poet
The Tenure of Kings and Magistrates
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Reader comments about this quote:
 -- E Archer, NYC     
    License? Like my CCW? LOL
     -- Joe, Rochester, MI     
    In the language of the 17th century, license meant the abuse of freedom, or libertinage.
     -- David L Rosenthal     
  • 2
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
     -- Logan, Memphis, TN     
    Very dated language, which in today's language could mean something very different... hum, just like the stories in the "holy books" are best interpreted as just that, stories, not records of history!
     -- Anonymous, Reston, VA US     
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    For once I agree with Reston.
     -- jim k, austin tx     
    Excellent Quote by John MIlton of course. But also brilliant comments from the rest of you.
     -- Walter Clark, Fullerton CA     
    Thank you Mr. Rosenthal on what license meant then.
    To make Milton's quote even more appropriate to our interest in freedom today it would be to interpret the word license to mean what the new definition is: permission of the state.
     -- Walter Clark, Fullerton CA     
    The King James Bible is the Rock upon which the Republic rest ! " God doth not need Either man's work, or his own gifts; who best bear his mild yoke, they serve him best."
    John Milton. Sonnet on His Blindness.
    He spoke greatly on behalf of Republicanism .
     -- Ron w13, Or     
    A license is: A right given by some competent authority to do an act, which without such authority would be illegal (Bouviers Law Dictionary) A personal privilege to do some particular act or series of acts ⋯ The permission by competent authority to do an act which, without such permission would be illegal, a trespass, a tort, or otherwise not allowable. (Blacks Law Dictionary, 6th Edition) Rights, freedom and liberty either derive from a faculty of birth (God if you understand such) or government. There is not an either / or, or another choice. Government's prowess to license means all acts are illegal unless the competent authority "government" gives you the privilege to perform such otherwise illegal act (the religious sacrament of marriage for example) No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. An individual either loves freedom or license. For the individual that says he does both, it is written "A double minded man is unstable in all his ways."
     -- Mike, Norwalk     
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    Aldous Huxley said something similar. Here is his "iron law of sexuality": "As political and economic freedom diminishes, sexual freedom tends compensatingly to increase."
    Source: http://www.directessays.com/viewpaper/75326.html
     -- Koen de Groot, Amsterdam, Netherlands     
  • 2

    hmmm, interesting point. Makes the quote even better.

     -- Felipe, São Paulo     
    Another great quote. Thanks for sharing

     -- Felipe, São Paulo     
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