Rasselas, prince of Abyssinia (or Ethiopia), grows dissatisfied with the unceasing pleasures of his utopian home in the Happy Valley. According to Ethiopian tradition, the children of royalty were confined to an edenic valley, secluded from the harsh realities of the outside world. Rather than being seen as a paradise by Rasselas, Happy Valley is instead considered to be a prison, harboring boredom and tediousness. So, accompanied by his teacher, his sister, and her lady-in-waiting, Rasselas escapes his idyllic homeland to experience the outside world and search out the way of life most likely to lead to lasting happiness.
|Publisher:||Melville House Publishing|
|Series:||Art of the Novella Series|
|Product dimensions:||5.00(w) x 6.90(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
Samuel Johnson was born in 1709 above his father's bookshop in Lichfield, England. He was a sickly child, scarred by smallpox, with facial and vocal tics, likely symptoms of Tourette Syndrome. But he proved a brilliant student, attending Oxford until a lack of funds forced his departure. (Numerous honorary degrees would later justify his famous sobriquet "Dr." Johnson.) At twenty-five he married Elizabeth "Tetty" Potter, a well-off widow twenty-one years his senior. She funded a school Johnson started, but lost much of her wealth when the school failed. Wracked by guilt, Johnson walked to London and, living virtually on the street, began writing reviews, essays and news for magazines, notably The Idler and The Rambler. In 1744, he published his masterpiece, Life Of Savage, an innovative warts-and-all biography of his friend, writer Richard Savage. Johnson would write several more "lives," culminating in his acclaimed three-volume Lives of The Poets. In 1746 a group of publishers asked Johnson to compile an authoritative English dictionary. He completed the massive undertaking in 1755, and A Dictionary of the English Language would set the standard for the next 150 years. Upon his death in 1784 he was buried in Westminster Abbey. Yet his fame only rose when, in 1791, his friend James Boswell published became the most famous "life" of them all: Life of Samuel Johnson.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
A beautifully written book. Wonderful.