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John Wilmot, 2nd Earl of Rochester (1 April 1647 – 26 July 1680), was an English poet and courtier of King Charles II 's Restoration court. The Restoration reacted against the "spiritual authoritarianism" of the Puritan era. Rochester was the embodiment of the new era, and he is as well known for his rakish lifestyle as his poetry, although the two were often interlinked. In 1669 he committed treason by boxing the ears of Thomas Killigrew in sight of the monarch, and in 1673 he accidentally delivered an insulting diatribe to the King. A. C. Grayling wrote, "It is quite something to live in an age of riotous immorality, and yet to be accounted the most dissolute individual of the time." He died at the age of 33 from venereal disease .
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