Scottish Men of Letters in the Eighteenth Century (Classic Reprint)by Henry Grey Graham
The eighteenth century forms a very distinct period of Scottish literary history, for of its men of note not one had begun to write when the century began, and all of them, except Dugald Stewart, had ceased to write when it ended. This volume, however, does not aim so much at giving a history of the
Excerpt from Scottish Men of Letters in the Eighteenth Century
The eighteenth century forms a very distinct period of Scottish literary history, for of its men of note not one had begun to write when the century began, and all of them, except Dugald Stewart, had ceased to write when it ended. This volume, however, does not aim so much at giving a history of the literature as at giving an account of the men who made it. Most of the Scots writers had all the characteristics of their country in their speech, their manners, and ways of living, and they preserved their individualities and peculiarities uh suppressed by those social conventions and restraints of fashion which in a later age moulded their countrymen to more ordinary types. It is these personal characteristics, old fashioned and pronounced, which render them all the more interesting. We are helped very little to a knowledge of them by biographies written by their friends, for these consisted chieﬂy of brief, colourless memoirs prefixed to their works. Neither can we gain a picture of their times by such diaries and voluminous correspondence as abounded in England, from which we can reconstruct the social life of the age. In Scotland no diaries were written, little correspondence was preserved: the writers themselves did not keep copies for.
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