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Early Lifes And Works
(Samuel Johnson)

Johnson, Samuel, 1709?84, English author, b. Lichfield. The
leading literary scholar and critic of his time, Johnson
helped to shape and define the Augustan Age. He was equally
celebrated for his brilliant and witty conversation. His
rather gross appearance and manners were viewed tolerantly,
if not with a certain admiration

The son of a bookseller, Johnson excelled at school in
spite of illness (he suffered the effects of scrofula
throughout his life) and poverty. He entered Oxford in 1728
but was forced to leave after a year for lack of funds. He
sustained himself as a bookseller and schoolmaster for the
next six years, during which he continued his wide reading
and published some translations. In 1735 he married
Elizabeth Porter, a widow 20 years his senior, and remained
devoted to her until her death in 1752.

Johnson settled in London in 1737 and began his literary
career in earnest. At first he wrote primarily for Edward
Cave's Gentleman's Magazine?poetry and prose on subjects
literary and political.

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