Lives of the Poets is a piece via Samuel Johnson, comprising of brief biographies and important value determinations of fifty two poets, so much of whom lived throughout the eighteenth century. it's prepared, nearly, via date of demise. Six of the Lives were singled out because the such a lot "important": John Milton, John Dryden, Alexander Pope, Joseph Addison, Jonathan quick, and Thomas grey.
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1783 Stroke, transitority lack of speech. Recovers; in the course of iciness of 1783–4 in poor health and depressed. 1784 Dies thirteen December. Buried in Westminster Abbey, 20 December. THE LIVES OF THE POETS commercial THE Booksellers having made up our minds to put up a physique of English Poetry, i used to be persuaded to vow them a Preface to the Works of every writer; an project, because it used to be then offered to my brain, now not very huge or tough. My function used to be in basic terms to have distributed to each Poet an commercial, like these which we discover within the French Miscellanies,* containing a couple of dates and a basic personality; yet i've been led past my purpose, i am hoping, via the sincere wish of giving worthy excitement. during this minute form of historical past, the succession of proof isn't really simply came across; and i'm now not with no suspicion that a few of Dryden’s works are positioned in mistaken years. i've got Langbaine,* because the most sensible authority for his performs: and if I shall hereafter receive a extra right chronology, will submit it; yet i don't but be aware of that my account is inaccurate. Dryden’s feedback on Rymer* were someplace published sooner than. the previous version i haven't obvious. This was once transcribed for the clicking from his personal manuscript. As this venture was once occasional and unexpected, i need to be speculated to have engaged in it with much less provision of fabrics than could have been gathered by means of longer premeditation. Of the later writers at the very least i'd, via realization and enquiry, have gleaned many details, which might have varied and enlivened my Biography. those omissions, which it's now dead to lament, were usually provided by way of the kindness of Mr. STEEVENS* and different acquaintances; and nice guidance has been given me via Mr. SPENCE’S Collections,* of which I contemplate the communique as a favour necessary of publick acknowledgement. COWLEY THE lifetime of Cowley, even though the penury of English biography, has been written by way of Dr. Sprat,* an writer whose being pregnant of mind's eye and magnificence of language have deservedly set him excessive within the ranks of literature; yet his zeal of friendship, or ambition of eloquence, has produced a funeral oration instead of a heritage: he has given the nature, now not the lifetime of Cowley; for he writes with so little aspect, that scarcely any factor is relatively recognized, yet all is shewn burdened and enlarged in the course of the mist of panegyrick. ABRAHAM COWLEY was once born within the 12 months 1000 600 and eighteen. His father used to be a grocer, whose Dr. Sprat conceals less than the overall appellation of a citizen; and, what could not likely were much less conscientiously suppressed, the omission of his identify within the sign up of St. Dunstan’s parish offers cause to suspect that his father used to be a sectary. * Whoever he was once, he died sooner than the beginning of his son, and hence left him to the care of his mom; whom wooden* represents as suffering earnestly to obtain him a literary schooling, and who, as she lived to the age of 80, had her solicitude rewarded through seeing her son eminent, and, i am hoping, through seeing him lucky, and engaging his prosperity.