Milton was born in London, England, on December 9, 1608, the son of composer John Milton and his wife Sarah Jeffrey. The poet's father emerged from a line of obscure Roman Catholic yeomen in Oxfordshire, was educated as a chorister, went to London, and became a scrivener - a profession that combined moneylender, copyist, notary, and contract lawyer. About 1600 he married Sara Jeffrey, the wealthy daughter of a merchant-tailor. Three of their children survived infancy: Anne, John, and Christopher. Their father was not only an able man of business but a musician. He composed madrigals, choral pieces, and some hymns that are still sung. From him young John derived the love of music that pervades his works.