"The General Correspondence of James Boswell, 1766-1769" by James Boswell

The General Correspondence of James Boswell, 1766-1769 Volume 2: 1768-1769 James Boswell, Richard C. Cole, Peter S. Baker, Rachel McClellan, James J. Caudle

Yale Editions of the Private Papers of James Boswell
Publication date:
21 Jan 1998
Yale University Press
352 pages: 229 x 152mm


This is the second and final volume of James Boswell’s general correspondence for the years 1766 to 1769. The richly diverse collection includes the texts of letters between Boswell and 123 correspondents, beginning when Boswell was in the early years of his legal career in Edinburgh and closing shortly after his marriage to his penniless Ayrshire cousin, Margaret Montgomerie. The volume includes a comprehensive analytical index to both volumes of Boswell’s general correspondence between 1766 and 1769.

The correspondence touches on many topics and issues, some public, some private, including Boswell’s patronage of an obscure struggling playwright and poet, William Julius Mickle; the publication and reception of Boswell’s highly successful Account of Corsica and his efforts to rouse British interest in the Corsican cause; and the aftermath of Boswell’s vigorous legal and journalistic involvement in the Douglas Cause. Letters to and from his European correspondents carry echoes of Boswell’s recently completed Grand Tour and the closing moments of his epistolary affair with the francophone Dutch author, Belle de Zuylen (Zélide).

Richard C. Cole is Virginia Lasater Irvin Professor of English at Davidson College. Peter S. Baker is professor of English at the University of Virginia. Rachel McClellan is former managing editor of The Yale Boswell Editions at Yale University. James J. Caudle is assistant professor of history at Ouachita Baptist University.