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  • Published: 15 November 1992
  • ISBN: 9781857151015
  • Imprint: Everyman
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 1336
  • RRP: $29.99

The Life Of Samuel Johnson




A landmark in Boswell and Johnson studies

The most celebrated English biography is a group portrait in which extraordinary man paints the picture of a dozen more. At the centre of a brilliant circle which included Burke, Reynolds, Garrick, Fanny Burney and even George III, Boswell captures the powerful, troubled and witty figure of Samuel Johnson, who towers above them all. Yet this is also an intimate picture of domestic life, which mingles the greatest talkers of a talkative age with the hero's humbler friends in a picture which is, before all things, humane. This is a new, corrected, rest and reprinted edition. At 14. 99 for the complete edition of the Life in 1344 pages, it compares with Penguin's abridged edition of just 300 pages of text at 6. 99 and OUP's World Classics unabridged edition printed on newsprint at 10. 99.

  • Published: 15 November 1992
  • ISBN: 9781857151015
  • Imprint: Everyman
  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 1336
  • RRP: $29.99

About the author

James Boswell

James Boswell (1740-1795) was a lawyer, diarist, and author born in Edinburgh. He is best known as the biographer of Samuel Johnson. Boswell is known for taking voracious notes on the grand tour of Europe that he took as a young nobleman and, subsequently, of his tour to Scotland with Johnson. He also recorded meetings and conversations with eminent individuals belonging to 'The Club', including David Garrick, Edmund Burke, Joshua Reynolds and Oliver Goldsmith.Samuel Johnson was born in Lichfield in 1709 and was educated at Lichfield Grammar School and, for a short time, at Pembroke College, Oxford. In 1735 he married Elizabeth Jervis Porter and in 1737 moved to London. There, he became a regular contributor to the Gentleman's Magazine, but struggled to earn a living from writing. His London: A Poemin Imitation of the Third Satire of Juvenal was published anonymously in 1738 and attracted some attention. From 1750 to 1752 he issued the Rambler, a periodical written almost entirely by himself, and consolidated his position as a notable moral essayist with some twenty-five essays in the Adventurer. When his Dictionary of the English Language was published in 1755, Johnson took on the proportions of a literary monarch in the London of his day. In need of money to visit his sick mother, he wrote Rasselas (1759) reportedly in the evenings of one week, finishing a couple of days after his mother's death. In 1763 Boswell became his faithful follower and it is mainly due to him that we owe our intimate knowledge of Johnson. Johnson's last major work was Lives of the Poets. He died in December 1784.

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