Samuel Johnson: A Biography

Samuel Johnson: A Biography

by Peter Martin

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780674057371
Publisher: Harvard
Publication date: 11/15/2010
Pages: 640
Product dimensions: 5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.40(d)

About the Author

Peter Martin has taught English on both sides of the Atlantic and is the author of A Life of James Boswell and Samuel Johnson: A Biography.

Table of Contents

  • Contents

  • List of Illustrations
  • Preface

    Part One, Staffordshire Youth

  1. Anecdotes of Beggary
  2. Stepping on the Duckling
  3. Leaping over the Rail
  4. Two Benefactors
  5. Part Two, Despondency and Hope

  6. Oxford: Wielding a Scholar’s Weapon
  7. Horrible Imaginings
  8. Stirrings in Birmingham
  9. Taking a Wife
  10. Part Three, Slow Rises Worth

  11. Stranger in London
  12. Sons of Misery: Finding Richard Savage
  13. ‘Slow Rises Worth by Poverty Depress’d’
  14. Wandering in the Midlands
  15. Part Four, Triumph: The Dictionary Years

  16. London Revived: A Lion in Harness
  17. A Lifeline: The Dictionary
  18. Poetic Interludes
  19. Tetty and ‘Amorous Propensities’
  20. The Triumph of the Moralist
  21. Darkness Falls
  22. Once More unto the Breach: Back to the Dictionary
  23. Part Five, Depression, Shakespeare, Travel and Anger

  24. Stalled
  25. ‘Suffering Chimeras’
  26. ‘Vain and Corrupt Imaginations’
  27. Boswell and Mrs Thrale
  28. Shakespeare and the Living World
  29. Coliseum of Beasts
  30. Back to Shakespeare and the Dictionary
  31. The Road to the Hebrides
  32. Politics and Travel
  33. Part Six, Biography and ‘The Race with Death’

  34. ‘A Very Poor Creeper upon the Earth’
  35. Biographical Straitjacket
  36. Losing Ground
  37. The Last Days

  • Notes
  • Bibliography
  • Acknowledgements
  • Index

What People are Saying About This

Peter Martin's biography of Samuel Johnson is a profoundly poignant and eloquent account of the Western world's greatest literary critic. It is superior even to Martin's valuable biography of Boswell.

Harold Bloom

Peter Martin's biography of Samuel Johnson is a profoundly poignant and eloquent account of the Western world's greatest literary critic. It is superior even to Martin's valuable biography of Boswell.

Robert Folkenflik

As Johnson's three hundredth birthday approaches, the time is ripe for a new biography that takes into account all we have learned about Johnson in this century and the later years of the last. Martin knows and tells. The result is a highly readable, deeply informed book that should find a broad and appreciative audience.
Robert Folkenflik, University of California, Irvine

Henry Hitchings

Building on his previous work on James Boswell, Samuel Johnson's most celebrated biographer, Peter Martin has written a humane, coherent and accessible life of the great eighteenth-century polymath, deftly and sympathetically exploring his personal relationships and psyche while also locating him in the literary culture of his age.
Henry Hitchings, author of Dr Johnson's Dictionary: The Extraordinary Story of the Book that Defined the World

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Samuel Johnson 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
MickeySkinner More than 1 year ago
Peter Martin has done a superb job of writing this biography of Samuel Johnson. I simply could not put the book down. Mr. Martin's research was impeccable, he made me feel as though I was right there with Mr. Johnson from birth to death. Every little habit and mannerism was vividly portrayed in the man's life. He did his research and put it into words that were a delight to read and think about. Samuel Johnson had an impact on every person that ever sought to find the meaning of a word in his dictionary. Great job.