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18 July

365 Great Things About Staffordshire - Samuel Johnson

Samuel Johnson was born in 1709 in Lichfield, Staffordshire. The son of a bookseller, he rose to become one of the greatest literary figures of the eighteenth century, most famously compiling a dictionary of the English Language in 1755.

Johnson’s written work was immense and varied. He completed a critical edition of the works of William Shakespeare and created biographies and critical appraisals of 52 English poets of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries for his Lives of the Poets.

He also wrote literary criticism and was a prolific essayist, for two years being the almost sole contributor to The Rambler, as well as writing for The Idler and The Adventurer.

Today, according to 'The Oxford Dictionary of Quotations', Johnson is the second most-quoted Englishman. There is a topical reference guide to his quotations available on the Samuel Johnson website

Samuel Johnson's Birthplace Museum

Lichfield's greatest son was born in 1709 in his father's house in Breadmarket Street.

Samuel Johnson spent the first 27 years of his life in the atmospheric Grade I listed trader's townhouse in Lichfield. Now a Museum to his life and times, with stunning  collections and  events open for all throughout the year. 

Find out more about the  Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum

Join in with 365 great things about Staffordshire

  • It could be a place, a person, a thing, a community project - anything!
  • Big or small – if you’ve got a thought about something that you feel makes Staffordshire Great, we’d love to hear about it and share it.

Follow along with 365 great things about Staffordshire

  • Share all of the ‘great things’ that we publish over the next year, and comment on them using the hashtag #Staffs365


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