Samuel Johnson Quotes

A collection of quotes by Samuel Johnson.

Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) was an English writer, poet, and lexicographer, widely regarded as one of the most influential figures in English literature. Born in Lichfield, Staffordshire, Johnson overcame various personal adversities, including financial struggles and physical ailments, to become a prominent literary figure of his time.

His most notable work is "A Dictionary of the English Language," published in 1755, which was regarded as one of the greatest achievements in English lexicography. The dictionary took him seven years to complete and laid the foundation for the modern English language. Johnson's meticulous approach in compiling the dictionary, including his definition writing style, had a lasting impact on subsequent dictionaries.

Johnson was also a prolific writer, known for his essays, poetry, and biographies. One of his major works includes "The Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets," which offers critical evaluations of notable poets from the late 16th to the early 18th century. His periodical essays, published in "The Rambler" and "The Idler," further solidified his reputation as a leading literary figure of his time.

Beyond his literary contributions, Johnson's charismatic personality and intellect made him a central figure in intellectual circles in London. He established the Literary Club, a gathering of literary giants such as Joshua Reynolds, Edmund Burke, and David Garrick, which played a significant role in shaping the cultural and literary landscape of the 18th century.

Samuel Johnson's impact on English literature cannot be overstated. His dictionaries, essays, and biographies continue to be revered for their insight, precision, and lasting influence on subsequent generations of writers and scholars.