Jonathan Swift

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Jonathan Swift
Born 30 November 1667(1667-11-30)[1]
Dublin, Ireland1
Died 19 October 1745 (aged 77)
Ireland
Occupation satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer, poet, priest

Jonathan Swift (30 November 1667 – 19 October 1745) was an Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for Whigs then for the Tories), poet and cleric.[2] He became Dean of St. Patrick's Cathedral in Dublin.

He is remembered for books and poems he wrote like: Gulliver's Travels, A Modest Proposal, A Journal to Stella, Drapier's Letters, The Battle of the Books, An Argument Against Abolishing Christianity, and A Tale of a Tub. Swift is probably the most well known prose satirist in the English language. He is less well known for his poetry.

Swift originally published all of his work under pseudonyms — such as Lemuel Gulliver, Isaac Bickerstaff, M.B. Drapier — or anonymously. He is known for being a master of two styles of satire; the Horatian and Juvenalian styles.

Epitaph in St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin near his burial site.

Works[change | edit source]

Swift was a good writer, famous for his satires. The most recent collection of his prose works (Herbert Davis, ed. Basil Blackwell, 1965-) comprises fourteen volumes. A recent edition of his complete poetry (Pat Rodges, ed. Penguin, 1983) is 953 pages long. One edition of his correspondence (David Woolley, ed. P. Lang, 1999) fills three volumes.

Legacy[change | edit source]

John Ruskin named him as one of the three people in history who were the most influential for him.[3]

References[change | edit source]

  1. Thackeray 1876
  2. Merriman, C.D.. "Jonathan Swift - Biography and Works" (in English). The Literature Network. http://www.online-literature.com/swift/. Retrieved 2010-02-23.
  3. John Ruskin: Sesame and Lillies

Other websites[change | edit source]