Sunday, December 11, 2022

Americans as seen by (some) Europeans, 1754

 So, while continuing to make my way through Andrew Levy's THE LAST EMANCIPATOR I'm finding various interesting bits to follow up on somewhere down the line. High on that list is a 1754 novel that sounds like a forerunner of the mystery novel mingled with the melodramatic / Gothic and the picaresque. Here's Levy's description of Kimber's book (p. 15):

in 1754, Edward Kimber, the editor of London's Gentleman's Magazine, published a novel entitled History of the Life and Adventures of Mr. Anderson: Containing his Strange Varieties of Fortune in Europe and America, Compiled from his Own Papers. The novel featured as its antagonist a wealthy, corrupt young American slaveholder, 'the richest heir' in the colony, but 'a lad of bad principles, unlettered, and of coarse manners,' who is murdered, in the novel's crowd-pleasing ending, by his own slaves


I consider myself pretty well versed in nineteenth century literature, but I confess to have not come across that one before. Now to see if I can find a copy that is both easy of access and inexpensive to acquire.

--John R

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