Famous 18th Century Biographers

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 1 

Samuel Johnson
4
Birthdate: September 18, 1709
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Lichfield, England
Died: December 13, 1784

Essayist, biographer, lexicographer, and literary critic Samuel Johnson, or Dr. Johnson, is remembered for his A Dictionary of the English Language and Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets. He was also a poet, a playwright, and a staunch Tory. His mannerisms indicated he had Tourette syndrome.

 2 
Washington Irving
(Author, Historian, Diplomat)

Washington Irving
4
Birthdate: April 3, 1783
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: New York City, New York
Died: November 28, 1859

Widely known as the first American man of letters, Washington Irving penned the legendary tales of Rip Van Winkle and The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, which are also called the first short stories by an American author. He had also had a brief stint as a lawyer.

 3 
James Boswell
(Best Known for His Biography of His Friend and Older Contemporary the English Writer 'Samuel Johnson')

James Boswell
3
Birthdate: October 29, 1740
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Edinburgh, Scotland
Died: May 19, 1795

Best known for his biography of his friend Samuel Johnson, 18th-century biographer and diarist James Boswell was also a qualified lawyer. Know for his reckless lifestyle and his trysts with prostitutes, he had contracted gonorrhea and had also fathered many children, including two illegitimate ones.

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 4 

Thomas De Quincey
3
Birthdate: August 15, 1785
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Manchester
Died: December 8, 1859

Essayist Thomas De Quincey is best remembered for his iconic book Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, which initially appeared in the London Magazine. The work was an autobiographical account of his own addiction to opium, which he had begun consuming to help him deal with the pain of his facial neuralgia.

 5 
James Hogg
(Poet, Writer, Novelist, Biographer, Songwriter)

James Hogg
3
Birthdate: December 9, 1770
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ettrick, Scotland
Died: November 21, 1835

 6 
Anton Schindler
(Conductor, Writer, Musicologist, Music historian, Biographer, Composer)

Anton Schindler
2
Birthdate: June 13, 1795
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Medlov
Died: January 16, 1864

 7 

Mason Locke Weems
2
Birthdate: October 11, 1759
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Anne Arundel County, Maryland, United States
Died: May 23, 1825
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 8 

Edward John Trelawny
2
Birthdate: November 13, 1792
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: London, England
Died: August 13, 1881

Edward John Trelawny was a British biographer, novelist and adventurer. He is famous for his friendship with Percy Bysshe Shelley and Lord Byron. Handsome and dashing, he joined the Royal Navy at the age of thirteen, later writing about his experiences in Adventures of a Younger Son. His other well-known work is Recollections of the Last Days of Shelley and Byron.

 9 

Mary Anne Clarke
2
Birthdate: April 3, 1776
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: London, England
Died: June 21, 1852

Mary Anne Clarke was Prince Frederick's mistress. Her memoirs, which documented her relationship with Prince Frederick, were published in 1809. Her life and career inspired the famous novel Mary Anne which was written by her great-great granddaughter Daphne du Maurier.

 10 

Thomas Jefferson Hogg
2
Birthdate: May 24, 1792
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Norton, England
Died: August 27, 1862

Thomas Jefferson Hogg was a British writer and barrister. He is remembered for his friendship and numerous collaborations with Percy Bysshe Shelley. While studying at the University College, Oxford, Hogg and Shelley worked on a controversial essay called The Necessity of Atheism which ultimately resulted in their expulsion from Oxford.

 11 

Hartley Coleridge
2
Birthdate: September 19, 1796
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kingsdown, England
Died: January 6, 1849

The eldest son of Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Hartley Coleridge grew up spending most of his time reading and was closely associated with poets Robert Southey and William Wordworth. Though he gained a fellowship at Oriel, he later lost it due to his alcoholism and his inconsistency.

 12 

Johanna Schopenhauer
2
Birthdate: July 9, 1766
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Gdańsk, Poland
Died: April 17, 1838

 13 
Amelia Opie
(Novelist and poet)

Amelia Opie
1
Birthdate: November 12, 1769
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Norwich, England
Died: December 2, 1853

 14 

John Gibson Lockhart
1
Birthdate: July 14, 1794
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Wishaw, Scotland
Died: November 25, 1854

Emmanuel, comte de Las Cases
1
Birthdate: June 21, 1766
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Revel, France
Died: May 15, 1842

 16 
Ukawsaw Gronniosaw
(Former Autobiographer known for his 1772 narrative autobiography A Narrative of the Most Remarkable Particulars in the Life of James Albert Ukawsaw Gronniosaw, an African Prince, as Related by Himself)

Ukawsaw Gronniosaw
1
Birthdate: 1705 AD
Birthplace: Nigeria
Died: September 28, 1775

 17 
Sergey Aksakov
(Autobiographer)

Sergey Aksakov
1
Birthdate: October 1, 1791
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ufa, Russia
Died: May 12, 1859

 18 

William Hayley
1
Birthdate: November 9, 1745
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Chichester, England
Died: November 12, 1820

 19 

Arnold Houbraken
1
Birthdate: March 28, 1660
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Dordrecht, Netherlands
Died: October 14, 1719

Dutch painter Arnold Houbraken studied threadtwisting and engraving, before being introduced to art. He is perhaps best remembered for his historical volume on the Dutch painters of the Golden Age, or the 17th century, titled De Groote Schouburgh, or The Great Theatre of Dutch Painters.

 20 
Henry Francis Cary
(Biographer)

Henry Francis Cary
1
Birthdate: December 6, 1772
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Gibraltar, United Kingdom
Died: August 14, 1844

Henry Francis Cary is best remembered for translating Dante’s Divine Comedy in blank verse. He had also penned several biographies of British and French authors. Educated at Oxford, he had also worked at the British Museum as an assistant librarian and was an Anglican clergy.

Laure Junot, Duchess of Abrantès
1
Birthdate: November 6, 1784
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Montpellier, France
Died: June 7, 1838

Louis Antoine Fauvelet de Bourrienne
1
Birthdate: July 9, 1769
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Sens, France
Died: February 7, 1834

 23 
Boisrond-Tonnerre
(Writer, Historian)

Boisrond-Tonnerre
1
Birthdate: June 6, 1776
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Torbeck, Haiti
Died: October 24, 1806

 24 

Henriette Campan
1
Birthdate: October 6, 1752
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: March 16, 1822

 25 
Maria Stella
(Memoirist)

Maria Stella
1
Birthdate: April 16, 1773
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Tuscany, Italy
Died: December 23, 1843

 26 

Charles Cowden Clarke
1
Birthdate: December 15, 1787
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Enfield, England
Died: March 13, 1877

Karl August Varnhagen von Ense
1
Birthdate: February 21, 1785
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Düsseldorf, Germany
Died: October 10, 1858

 28 

Jean-Baptiste Louvet
0
Birthdate: June 12, 1760
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Paris, France
Died: August 25, 1797

 29 

Elijah Fenton
0
Birthdate: May 20, 1683
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: England
Died: July 16, 1730