Monday, May 14, 2012

Life and Errors

‘…If he writes his own history, as he proposes, we may gain something; but he must send it here to be printed. Nothing less than a neck-or-nothing London bookseller, like John Dunton of yore, will venture to commit to the press his strange details uncastrated…’

Walter Scott refers to John Dunton in a letter to John Morritt (April 30, 1814).  According to “Chambers’ Book of Days”, Dunton, a bookseller by trade,  wrote more than 60 works, and published more than 600.  Apprenticed at age 15 to learn the book trade from Thomas Parkhurst, Dunton invited more than 100 fellow apprentices to celebrate the funeral for the completion of this apprenticeship. The work Scott alludes to above is Dunton’s “Life and Errors”.  John Dunton was born on May 4th, 1659 (O.S), or May 14th (N.S.).

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