Friday, September 18, 2009

NYROB on Brack's edition of Hawkins's Life

From a roundup of new Samuel Johnson titles in the New York Review of Books:

"A new, corrected, and annotated edition of Hawkins's The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D, first published in 1787, and edited by O.M. Brack Jr., was reissued this summer by the University of Georgia Press. This edition is—as Johnson once said of a previous work by Hawkins on Izzak Walton—'very diligently collected, and very elegantly composed. You will...not wish for a better.' Professor Brack deals with the question of Hawkins's 'asperity' toward Johnson in his introduction. 'Hawkins had to decide if he was going to write a panegyric on Johnson or produce a life....Hawkins esteemed Johnson, but he esteemed truth more.'"