Anecdotes of The Late Samuel Johnson

The Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson or the Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. During the Last Twenty Years of His Life by Hester Thrale, also known as Hester Lynch Piozzi, was first published 26 March 1786. It was based on the various notes and anecdotes of Samuel Johnson that Thrale kept in her Thraliana. Thrale wrote the work in Italy while she lived there for three years after marrying Gabriel Piozzi.

Read more about Anecdotes Of The Late Samuel Johnson:  Background, Anecdotes, Critical Response

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    Depend upon it, Sir, when a man knows he is to be hanged in a fortnight, it concentrates his mind wonderfully.
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    How the imagination is piqued by anecdotes of some great man passing incognito, as a king in gray clothes.
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    Yet, hermit and stoic as he was, he was really fond of sympathy, and threw himself heartily and childlike into the company of young people whom he loved, and whom he delighted to entertain, as he only could, with the varied and endless anecdotes of his experiences by field and river: and he was always ready to lead a huckleberry-party or a search for chestnuts and grapes.
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    But this was the old tree’s late branch wrenched away,
    Grieving the sapless limbs, the shorn and shaken.
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    The comparison between Coleridge and Johnson is obvious in so far as each held sway chiefly by the power of his tongue. The difference between their methods is so marked that it is tempting, but also unnecessary, to judge one to be inferior to the other. Johnson was robust, combative, and concrete; Coleridge was the opposite. The contrast was perhaps in his mind when he said of Johnson: “his bow-wow manner must have had a good deal to do with the effect produced.”
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