Anecdotes of the late Samuel Johnson by Hester Lynch Thrale

  • Posted on: 15 September 2009
  • By: David Thrale

The Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson or the Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. During the Last Twenty Years of His Life by Hester Thrale, was first published 26 March 1786.

Samuel Johnson by Sir Joshua Reynolds 1772

It was based on the various notes and anecdotes of Samuel Johnson that Thrale kept in her Thraliana. She wrote the work in Italy while she lived there for three years after marrying Gabriel Piozzi.

The work was first published 26 March 1786. In 1815, Hester claimed:

At Rome we received letters saying the book was bought with such avidity, that Cadell had not one copy left when the King sent for it at ten o'clock at night, and he was forced to be one from a friend to supply his Majesty's impatience, who sate up all night reading it. I received £300, a sum unexampled in those days for so small a volume.

The Gentleman's Magazine of March 1786 said:

On the third morning after the book was published not a copy of it could be obtained.

The book went into four editions during 1786.

The Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson or the Anecdotes of the Late Samuel Johnson, LL.D. During the Last Twenty Years of His Life by Hester Thrale, was first published 26 March 1786.

It was based on the various notes and anecdotes of Samuel Johnson that Thrale kept in her Thraliana. She wrote the work in Italy while she lived there for three years after marrying Gabriel Piozzi.

The work was first published 26 March 1786. In 1815, Hester claimed:

At Rome we received letters saying the book was bought with such avidity, that Cadell had not one copy left when the King sent for it at ten o'clock at night, and he was forced to be one from a friend to supply his Majesty's impatience, who sate up all night reading it. I received £300, a sum unexampled in those days for so small a volume.

The Gentleman's Magazine of March 1786 said:

On the third morning after the book was published not a copy of it could be obtained.

The book went into four editions during 1786.

Hester Thrale's spelling, grammar, punctuation and capitalisation, some of which may not conform to today's standards, are reproduced faithfully throughout. More writings by Hester Thrale

Written by Hester Lynch Thrale in September 1785 and first published March 1786, by Cadell of London. Transcribed from the Project Gutenberg Etext [#2423] by Les Bowler, Dorset from the 1901 Cassell and Co. edition. Reformatted and hyper-linked by Thrale.com.