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A Poetical Review of the Literary and Moral Character of the late Samuel Johnson

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Author: John Courtenay
Published: 1786
Language: English
Wordcount: 10,936 / 42 pg
Flesch-Kincaid Reading Ease: 72.3
LoC Category: PN
Downloads: 278
Added to site: 2009.07.06
mnybks.net#: 24630
Genre: Biography

The eighteenth century was an age addicted to gossiping about its literary figures. This addiction was nowhere better demonstrated than by the countless reflections, sermons, poems, pamphlets, biographical sketches, and biographies about Samuel Johnson. The most productive phase of this activity commenced almost immediately after Johnson's death in December, 1784, and continued into the next century.

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m> (Oxford, 1965), p. 16.

[9] Letters, II, 428, 425. Boswell tried to negotiate loans for Courtenay, and made a successful application to Reynolds. See Private Papers, XVII, 85-86, 101-102; XVIII, 120.

[10] Private Papers, XVIII, 171, 178, 184.

[11] See Frank Brady, Boswell's Political Career (New Haven, 1965), p. 169, and Frederick A. Pottle, The Literary Career of James Boswell, Esq. (Oxford, 1929), p. 147.

[12] Private Papers, XVIII, 271. This entry is dated 31 March 1794, not long before the journal ends and some thirteen months before Boswell's death.

[13] The Art of Biography in Eighteenth Century England (Princeton, 1941), p. 345.

[14] Ibid., p. 346.

[15] W. K. Wimsatt, Jr., in The Prose Style of Samuel Johnson (New Haven, 1941), pp. 135-138, argues against the notion that Johnson's friends formed such a "school."

[16] Boswell praised Courtenay's "just and discriminat

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