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Jonathan Swift

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Jonathan Swift is known worldwide first of all as the author of Gulliver’s Travels tetralogy.  However, if we have a closer look at his biography and activities, it clears up that his personality exceeds the bounds of just being a creator of fantasy novels.

Born on November 30, 1667 in Dublin, Ireland, he started his career not as a writer but as a priest and then a dean of St Patrick’s Cathedral. Being of English origin, he was still an ardent advocate of the Irish population’s rights, for which he won the respect of the Irish community.

Swift got education in Triity College, where he met the representatives of the Wig party who were in opposition. Later, however, he was disappointed by their policy and supported the governing Tory party. Thanks to influential Tory friends he was appointed a dean.

Speaking about his maturing as a writer, such works can be remembered as The Battle of the Books, A Tale of a Tub, A Modest Proposal, a Journal to Stella and others. It may come as a surprise that Swift was not only a master of prose and satire but also a poet, an author of publicist essays, etc. Gulliver’s Travels are considered to be his masterpiece, which proves to be a synthesis of different styles: satire, fanntasy, a novel of education.

In his last years Swift had to endure sweet and bitter taste of fame because of his works. He was happy to finally see Gulliver Travels published, but at the same time he had to face the fact that it was censored and some of the most politically controversial issues were cut out. The writer had a certain spiritual disease, which was characterized by utter gloom and depression. This was killing him, so he died in 1745 after several years of suffering from the consequences of insult to the brain. Yet, Jonathan Swift remains one of the most remembered British and Irish authors of the 18th century and later epochs.

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