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Samuel Johnson

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June 7, 2009 | Amy Wilentz, Amy Wilentz is the author, most recently, of "I Feel Earthquakes More Often Than They Happen." She teaches literary journalism at UC Irvine.
This year marks the 300th anniversary of Samuel Johnson's birth, and in honor of that occasion, the Huntington Library has staged a new exhibition honoring the 18th century lexicographer, a man of letters who wore a wig, drank port and addressed his friends as "Sirrah." The other day, I went to San Marino to immerse myself in the vastness of Johnson's literary production and to read his stirring, inexorable prose, often in its first editions.
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ENTERTAINMENT
February 13, 2014 | By Elizabeth Hand
Marcel Theroux takes identity theft to a new level in "Strange Bodies," a literary science fiction novel as entertaining as it is thought-provoking and disturbing. The author of four previous novels, Theroux was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the U.K.'s Arthur C. Clarke Award for science fiction for his last book, the dystopian western "Far North," demonstrating his skill at reaching mainstream and genre audiences alike. "Strange Bodies" has a marvelously audacious hook - a contemporary reimagining of Mary Shelley's "Frankenstein," with one of the titans of English literature standing in for the monster.
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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 24, 2004 | From Associated Press
Samuel Johnson, who became a billionaire by expanding the wax company started by his great-grandfather into the consumer products giant SC Johnson, died of cancer Saturday, his family said. He was 76. Johnson, who retired as chairman of the Racine, Wisc.-based company in 2000, was the richest man in Wisconsin, with a fortune estimated by Forbes magazine this year at $7.4 billion. Johnson's son, Fisk Johnson, succeeded him as chairman.
ENTERTAINMENT
August 1, 2013 | By Hector Tobar
In Spanish, the long-dead Jorge Luis Borges is a minor Internet star. The Argentine short story writer, who died in 1986, left behind an unlikely legacy on YouTube and other sites: audio recordings and videos of his lectures, many recorded in Buenos Aires during a famous series of talks in 1977. If you understand Spanish, you can listen to Borges expound on topics such as Dante and the Divine Comedy , Buddhism , and his own blindness. Each talk offers a taste of Borges' unique voice, at once erudite and filled with a sense of wonder.
NEWS
May 27, 1994
John Wain, 69, novelist, poet and the author of an award-winning biography of Samuel Johnson. Wain's first novel, "Hurry on Down," published in 1953, made his reputation. His widely acclaimed 1974 biography, "Samuel Johnson," brought him the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Heinemann Award. Wain was made professor of poetry at Oxford University in 1973, a post he held for five years.
NEWS
May 20, 1997
Donald J. Greene, 82, USC educator and authority on 18th century writer Samuel Johnson. Greene was Leo S. Bing professor of English from 1968 until his retirement in 1985. He was known for his book "The Politics of Samuel Johnson," considered a landmark study that cleared away misconceptions about Johnson's relationships to political parties and issues.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 20, 2008 | Tim Rutten
If you survey the geography of modern letters, three books stand out as signposts marking the beginning of paths that lead decisively away from all that went before. Augustine's "Confessions," the first memoir of an inner life, is one such work. So is Miguel de Cervantes' "Don Quixote," which is the first inarguably modern novel. The third is James Boswell's "The Life of Samuel Johnson," the earliest recognizable modern biography.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 16, 2006 | Mike Boehm, Times Staff Writer
One of four portraits of Samuel Johnson painted by his great friend Sir Joshua Reynolds is the new pride and joy of the Huntington in San Marino, which on Tuesday will unveil the gift from longtime supporters Loren and Frances Rothschild of Los Angeles. Reynolds made the painting, affectionately known as "Blinking Sam," around 1775.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 30, 2004 | Greg Sukiennik, Associated Press
For Mary Hyde Eccles, literary giant Samuel Johnson was more than a ghost of history. He was a passion. The Viscountess Eccles, a scholar and renowned book collector, spent 60 years acquiring works owned by or written by or about the 18th century English critic, biographer and essayist, who was regarded as one of the greatest public figures of his era. She started the collection with her first husband, lawyer Donald Hyde.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 11, 2000
"The greatest part of a writer's time is spent in reading, in order to write: A man will turn over half a library to make one book." Samuel Johnson 1709-84 English poet, critic
OPINION
June 7, 2009 | Amy Wilentz, Amy Wilentz is the author, most recently, of "I Feel Earthquakes More Often Than They Happen." She teaches literary journalism at UC Irvine.
This year marks the 300th anniversary of Samuel Johnson's birth, and in honor of that occasion, the Huntington Library has staged a new exhibition honoring the 18th century lexicographer, a man of letters who wore a wig, drank port and addressed his friends as "Sirrah." The other day, I went to San Marino to immerse myself in the vastness of Johnson's literary production and to read his stirring, inexorable prose, often in its first editions.
OPINION
May 27, 2009 | David Wolman, David Wolman is the author of "Righting the Mother Tongue: From Olde English to Email, the Tangled Story of English Spelling."
This year marks the 300th anniversary of the birth of Samuel Johnson, and were the master wordsmith alive today, I suspect he would be both a fan and a critic of the Scripps National Spelling Bee, taking place today and Thursday. Johnson penned the first annotated dictionary of the English language. At 3 million words in length, with 43,000 entries, it is one of history's greatest lexicographical achievements. As it happens, Johnson also believed that no word should ever end with "c."
ENTERTAINMENT
December 20, 2008 | Tim Rutten
If you survey the geography of modern letters, three books stand out as signposts marking the beginning of paths that lead decisively away from all that went before. Augustine's "Confessions," the first memoir of an inner life, is one such work. So is Miguel de Cervantes' "Don Quixote," which is the first inarguably modern novel. The third is James Boswell's "The Life of Samuel Johnson," the earliest recognizable modern biography.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 12, 2008 | Sheri Linden; Mark Olsen; Kevin Thomas; Gary Goldstein; Sam Adams
Like most films that crisscross among a handful of city dwellers to mull contemporary ennui, "$9.99" is less than the sum of its parts. The connective tissue of its episodes and set pieces -- some of which pack a memorable punch -- is not a compelling story line but the painterly physicality of the movie's stop-motion animation.
ENTERTAINMENT
December 16, 2006 | Mike Boehm, Times Staff Writer
One of four portraits of Samuel Johnson painted by his great friend Sir Joshua Reynolds is the new pride and joy of the Huntington in San Marino, which on Tuesday will unveil the gift from longtime supporters Loren and Frances Rothschild of Los Angeles. Reynolds made the painting, affectionately known as "Blinking Sam," around 1775.
BOOKS
September 26, 2004 | David L. Ulin, David L. Ulin is the author of "The Myth of Solid Ground: Earthquakes, Prediction, and the Faultline Between Reason and Faith" and the editor of "Another City: Writing From Los Angeles" and "Writing Los Angeles: A Literary Anthology."
Samuel JOHNSON'S "Dictionary of the English Language" essentially spawned the form. It's not that there were no dictionaries prior to Johnson's; dozens had appeared in the 150 years before his book was published in 1755. What these proto-lexicons lacked, however, was an appreciation of the nuances of language, the way words and usage evolve through the refining filter of daily speech.
BOOKS
February 2, 1986 | Loren R. Rothschild, Rothschild is the chairman of the Samuel Johnson Society of Southern California. and
"Dr. Johnson by Mrs. Thrale" reminds us that James Boswell was neither the only 18th-Century biographer of Samuel Johnson nor the only one of his friends to regularly record the Great Cham's wise, witty and remarkable words. Hester Lynch Thrale, in fact, knew more of Johnson and spent more time with him during his mature years than had Boswell or anyone else.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 5, 2003 | Myrna Oliver, Times Staff Writer
Mary, Viscountess Eccles, author and bibliophile who amassed one of the world's best archives of material on 18th century English lexicographer and writer Samuel Johnson and his biographer James Boswell, has died. She was 91. Eccles died Aug. 26 of natural causes at her home, Four Oaks Farm, in Somerset County, N.J.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 24, 2004 | From Associated Press
Samuel Johnson, who became a billionaire by expanding the wax company started by his great-grandfather into the consumer products giant SC Johnson, died of cancer Saturday, his family said. He was 76. Johnson, who retired as chairman of the Racine, Wisc.-based company in 2000, was the richest man in Wisconsin, with a fortune estimated by Forbes magazine this year at $7.4 billion. Johnson's son, Fisk Johnson, succeeded him as chairman.
ENTERTAINMENT
April 30, 2004 | Greg Sukiennik, Associated Press
For Mary Hyde Eccles, literary giant Samuel Johnson was more than a ghost of history. He was a passion. The Viscountess Eccles, a scholar and renowned book collector, spent 60 years acquiring works owned by or written by or about the 18th century English critic, biographer and essayist, who was regarded as one of the greatest public figures of his era. She started the collection with her first husband, lawyer Donald Hyde.
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