Samuel Johnson (Columbia)

Samuel Johnson (Columbia)

The Reverend Doctor Samuel Johnson (October 14, 1696 – January 6, 1772) was a clergyman, educator, and philosopher in colonial British North America. He was a major proponent of both Anglicanism and the philosophy of George Berkeley in the colonies, and served as the first president of the Anglican King's College (the predecessor to today's Columbia University).

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    Criticism is a study by which men grow important and formidable at very small expense. The power of invention has been conferred by nature upon few, and the labour of learning those sciences which may, by mere labour, be obtained, is too great to be willingly endured; but every man can exert some judgment as he has upon the works of others; and he whom nature has made weak, and idleness keeps ignorant, may yet support his vanity by the name of critic.
    —Samuel Johnson (1709–1784)