Samuel Johnson after Deconstruction: Rhetoric and the Rambler

By Steven Lynn | Go to book overview

Notes

1. Introduction: Johnson upon His Bedside, after Deconstruction
1. On the distribution of the series, see Wiles. On the place of The Rambler in Johnson career, see Bate, Johnson ( 1975) 289-95, Clifford71-87, and Greene, Johnson ( 1970) 139-46. Bond estimates the initial printing of The Spectator rose to about three thousand, but he also argues that contemporary reports of fourteen thousand and twenty thousand for some individual issues may be accurate ( Addison 1:xx-xxviii).
2. For Johnson's opinion that some essays could be made better and were "too wordy," see Boswell 4:5 and 4:309. I participated in Keast's challenge at the University of Texas in 1979. Subsequent references to Boswell are to the Life unless noted otherwise.
3. This remark continues, "they are generally so repulsive that I cannot" ( William Bowles, "To James Boswell," 4 November 1787; in Boswell, Correspondence251). See also Boswell 2:226, and Piozzi 332.
4. See Culler3-14 or Graff226-43.
5. See also Fussell144 and Hibbert75.
6. Boswell employs a similar strategy of proof-by-association a few pages later when he reports Johnson's disclosure that his style had been formed upon that of Sir William Temple and Ephraim Chambers. Boswell informs us, again "certainly," that Johnson "was mistaken" (1:218-19). Rather than explain how he knows more about the formation of Johnson's style than Johnson, Boswell instead merely illustrates his assertion, telling us "their styles differ

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