1776 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Robert Shiels

Samuel Johnson, 1776; Boswell, Life of Johnson, 1791; ed. G. B. Hill (1891) 3:34.



He told us, that the book entitled The Lives of the Poets, by Mr. Cibber, was entirely compiled by Mr. Shiels, a Scotchman, one of his amanuenses. "The bookseller (said he,) gave Theophilus Cibber, who was then in prison, ten guineas, to allow 'Mr. Cibber' to be put upon the title-page, as the authour; by this, a double imposition was intended: in the first place, that it was the work of a Cibber at all; and, in the second place, that it was the work of old Cibber."