Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Hostname: page-component-8448b6f56d-c4f8m Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-04-15T10:41:58.661Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Chapter 3 - Johnson and Renaissance Humanism

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2022

Greg Clingham
Affiliation:
Bucknell University, Pennsylvania
Get access

Summary

This chapter discusses an underexplored and relatively unappreciated, but essential, aspect of Samuel Johnson’s writing and thinking: his intellectual relationship with Renaissance humanism. Looking at representative figures such as Sir Thomas More, Sir Francis Bacon, and Michel de Montaigne, Lee explores the influence these writers and thinkers had upon Johnson, describing his lifelong interest in the kinds of scholarly works for which they were known (dictionary, scholarly edition, biography, satire, skeptical essay) and also detecting their presence in Johnson’s moral and philosophical commitment to an “active” life, and even in his very prose style. In so doing so, the chapter concludes that Johnson embraced Renaissance humanism while simultaneously adapting it into a project relevant and responsive to the demands of his own day and age – and, indeed, suggesting a model for our own potential humanism today.

Type
Chapter
Information
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2022

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

Available formats
×