Samuel Johnson Questions and Answers

Samuel Johnson

Johnson described Shakespeare's plays, and his tragedies in particular, as a "mirror of life." Because life is full of tragedy and comedy, and is at times tragicomic, Shakespeare's plays do too. As...

Latest answer posted July 20, 2020 12:13 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

In The Lives of the Poets, Samuel Johnson clearly argues that the metaphysical poets exhibit wit by joining incompatible ideas in order to create startling images, Johnson also concludes that the...

Latest answer posted June 16, 2013 1:21 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson wrote "A Study of Milton's 'Paradise Lost,'" in which he praises Milton's as a work of genius, as it unites "pleasure with truth" and "the probable with the marvelous" in its account...

Latest answer posted August 22, 2016 12:03 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson carefully and at length examines Milton's poetry in his Lives of the Poets. He can be critical of Milton's work, as Johnson often is of seventeenth century figures (it seems common...

Latest answer posted February 6, 2020 12:25 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

According to Jack Lynch, Ph.D., of Rutgers University, Samuel Johnson's Dictionary of the English Language (London, 1775) was the standard English dictionary for one hundred and fifty years,...

Latest answer posted August 11, 2010 1:53 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Regarding "To Sir John Lade, on His Coming of Age" (‘A Short Song of Congratulation’) by Samuel Johnson, when looking for a connection between form and content, my first inclination is to look at...

Latest answer posted December 19, 2010 12:19 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Dr. Samuel Johnson's Preface to Shakespeare (1756) taught critics after him how to do critical analysis of a poet in terms of a) the relationship between literature and nature, b) locating a writer...

Latest answer posted January 9, 2010 12:00 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel's Johnson poem, "To Sir John Lade, On His Coming of Age" can be more easily understood when broken down stanza by stanza. In poetry, [a] stanza refers to a grouping of lines, set off by a...

Latest answer posted December 20, 2010 10:13 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

In taking on such an enormous challenge, Dr. Johnson made no attempt at including every single word in the English language in his Dictionary of the English Language. What he hoped to do instead...

Latest answer posted September 24, 2018 6:20 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

With regard to Samuel Johnson's poem, "To Sir John Lade, On His Coming of Age," whether Johnson speaks of the senior or junior, he is definitely finding great fault with Lade's behavior upon coming...

Latest answer posted December 19, 2010 11:42 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Johnson's celebration of John Lade's reaching his "Coming of Age" is a light-hearted tour-de-force set of instructions to a wealthy young man for living life to the full. This catalogue of wealth...

Latest answer posted February 6, 2012 8:23 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Dr. Johnson's preface to his edition of Shakespeare's plays marked an important turning point between Neoclassical and Romantic criticism. He was the first to argue that Shakespeare should not be...

Latest answer posted November 13, 2009 2:12 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

To discuss how Samuel Johnson uses the convention of Juvenalian satire to critique English culture, it’d probably be a good idea to define Juvenalian satire first. The term is tied to the Roman...

Latest answer posted April 1, 2021 3:14 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Considering that Samuel Johnson collected the words for his dictionary from the prominent writers of his time (and times past), Johnson chose to give them credit in a very interesting (although...

Latest answer posted February 10, 2009 11:32 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Johnson's essay "Rambler No. 4" starts out by expressing how much more valuable Johnson finds romantic fiction (romantic, here, means that it portrays life plainly) compared to fantastical fiction....

Latest answer posted September 25, 2019 4:43 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Preface to Shakespeare is an enlightening essay about drama, human nature, common sense, and literary precepts. The principles of the Preface are: Shakespeare is the foremost of English writers....

Latest answer posted September 24, 2011 2:10 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson (1709–1784) was an English essayist, poet, biographer, literary critic, and compiler of the monumental Dictionary of the English Language, which contains over forty thousand entries....

Latest answer posted October 6, 2019 1:01 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson's influence falls into four main areas: lexicography, criticism, poetry, and (as a subject) biography, and it is in the first two areas that he has had the greatest impact. His prose...

Latest answer posted October 8, 2019 3:38 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

It was Samuel Johnson who first referred to certain 17th-century English lyric poets as “metaphysical.” The group is most readily defined by such writers as John Donne, Andrew Marvell, George...

Latest answer posted February 29, 2016 1:36 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Perhaps the most unusual feature of Samuel Johnson's posthumous fame is how little it owes to his own writing and how much to James Boswell's biography, The Life of Samuel Johnson. In his essay on...

Latest answer posted October 3, 2019 4:11 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Actually, Samuel Johnson’s 1765 Preface to Shakespeare fits into a tradition of presenting Shakespeare’s plays in modernized or more accessible versions. Treatises by John Locke, David Hume and...

Latest answer posted September 24, 2011 1:59 am UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson was born in Lichfield in 1709 to a middle-class family. His father was a bookseller. From an early age, Johnson showed precocious or advanced intelligence, excelling at school. He...

Latest answer posted October 5, 2019 8:26 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson is considered to be one of the most prominent voices in literary criticism. He is regarded by some to be the greatest of all critics of English literature. An excessive library of...

Latest answer posted February 26, 2020 8:41 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

Johnson was such a significant figure in the intellectual world that the period from 1745 to 1784 is labeled the Age of Johnson in English literary history. It was to a degree through the...

Latest answer posted October 8, 2019 3:58 pm UTC

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Samuel Johnson

The term common sense, in the 18th century, had technical philosophical implications which made it differ, to a degree, from the way we use it in the 21st century. The main source of the technical...

Latest answer posted February 1, 2012 12:40 pm UTC

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