1783 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Tobias Smollett

Isaac Reed, in Pearch, Supplement to Dodsley (1783) 4:121-22n.



Dr. Tobias Smollet was born at a small village within two miles of Cameron, on the banks of the river Eden, about the year 1720. He was bred to the practice of physic and surgery, and was some time on board a ship of war as surgeon, in which capacity he served at the siege of Carthagena. At the peace of Aix-la-Chapelle, in 1748, he quitted his sea-employment, and obtaining a diploma, attempted to settle at Bath as a physician. His success in this undertaking being unequal to his expectations, he relinquished the practice of his profession, and devoted his attention entirely to literature, by which he supported himself in a very respectable manner during the remainder of his life. His works of various kinds generally acquired the approbation of the publick, particularly his Novels and History of England. By a sedentary life and assiduous application to study, he imparied his health so much as to make it necessary for him to travel abroad in order to his recovery. He obtained relief the first time; but relapsing, he went again to Italy, and died at Leghorn October 21, 1771.