The word patriot was co-opted by various political and literary discourses
concerned with the ideology of reformation, revolution, and reaction to an
extent that has not been fully recognized. Humanism incorporated Roman Repu
blica ideas of the patria that were infused into the post-feudal world by w
ay of the newly coined patriot. Everyone, including Milton and Dryden, laid
claim to the inherent values of the word, royalist and parliamentarian, Pu
ritan and Leveller, Whig and Tory, Catholic and Anglican. This article surv
eys the seventeenth-century texts and contexts of the word.