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Biographical Essays   By: (1785-1859)

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Biographical Essays by Thomas De Quincey offers a fascinating journey into the lives of notable individuals that have shaped history. This collection of essays is a testament to the author's profound understanding of human nature and his ability to captivate readers with his prose.

De Quincey's biographical essays are not merely dry recollections of historical events but rather intimate portraits of the individuals themselves. Through meticulous research and a deep empathy for his subjects, the author breathes life into their stories, allowing readers to truly grasp their complex personalities and innermost struggles.

One of the strengths of this collection is De Quincey's ability to present biographical narratives in a deeply introspective and philosophical manner. The author delves beyond the surface of these historical figures, exploring the profound impact of their achievements and analyzing the motives driving their actions. By doing so, De Quincey enables readers to understand the complexities of human nature, the choices we make, and the consequences that follow.

While the essays in this collection cover a wide range of historical periods and figures, De Quincey maintains a consistent and engaging narrative style throughout. His prose is rich and vibrant, effortlessly transporting readers to different eras and immersing them in the worlds he describes. Moreover, the author's profound insights and thoughtful reflections make for a rewarding reading experience, encouraging readers to contemplate the broader implications of the stories being presented.

It should be noted that De Quincey's writing, though masterful, can be dense and requires a certain level of concentration from readers. His elaborate descriptions and intricate analysis demand attention, making this collection less suitable for those looking for a casual reading experience. Nevertheless, for readers who appreciate intellectual stimulation and a deep exploration of human character, this collection offers countless rewards.

Biographical Essays by Thomas De Quincey is a valuable addition to any library, particularly for those with an interest in history, psychology, or philosophy. De Quincey's skillful storytelling and profound insights make for a compelling read, shedding light on the lives of remarkable individuals while simultaneously exploring the complexities of human nature. Through this collection, readers will not only gain a deeper understanding of history but also find themselves pondering the profound questions that underlie the human experience.

First Page:


The "Confessions of an English Opium Eater," and "Suspiria De Profundis," form the first volume of this series of Mr. De Quincey's Writings. A third volume will shortly be issued, containing some of his most interesting papers contributed to the English magazines.



Author of "Confessions of an English Opium Eater," Etc. Etc.

SHAKSPEARE. [Endnote: 1]

William Shakspeare, the protagonist on the great arena of modern poetry, and the glory of the human intellect, was born at Stratford upon Avon, in the county of Warwick, in the year 1564, and upon some day, not precisely ascertained, in the month of April. It is certain that he was baptized on the 25th; and from that fact, combined with some shadow of a tradition, Malone has inferred that he was born on the 23d. There is doubtless, on the one hand, no absolute necessity deducible from law or custom, as either operated in those times, which obliges us to adopt such a conclusion; for children might be baptized, and were baptized, at various distances from their birth: yet, on the other hand, the 23d is as likely to have been the day as any other; and more likely than any earlier day, upon two arguments. First, because there was probably a tradition floating in the seventeenth century, that Shakspeare died upon his birthday: now it is beyond a doubt that he died upon the 23d of April... Continue reading book >>

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