George Washington: A Biography by Washington IrvingWashington Irving’s Life of George Washington (published in five volumes in 1856–59) was the product of his last years and remains his most personal work. Christened with the name of the great general, Irving was blessed by Washington while still a boy of seven, and later came to know many of the prominent figures of the Revolution.
In these pages he describes them using firsthand source material and observation. The result is a book which is fascinating not only for its subject (the American Revolution), but also for how it reveals in illuminating detail the personality and humanity of a now remote, towering icon. Here is an intimate portrait of Washington the man, from Virginia youth to colonial commander to commander-in-chief of the patriot army to first president and great guiding force of the American federation.
But one cannot read Irving’s Life without marveling at the supreme art behind it, for his biography is foremost a work of literature. Charles Neider’s abridgment and editing of Irving’s long out-of-print classic has created a literary work comparable in importance and elegance to the original. George Washington, A Biography, Neider’s title for his edition of Irving’s Life, makes the work accessible to modern audiences. The extensive introduction provides a detailed analysis of Irving’s life and times, and the difficulties he faced as he worked against his own failing health to finish what he felt was his masterpiece. This new edition of the superb biography of America’s first citizen by America’s first literary artist remains as fresh and unique today as when it was penned.
Washington Irving April 3, — November 28, was an American short story writer, essayist, biographer, historian, and diplomat of the early 19th century. His historical works include biographies of Oliver Goldsmith , Islamic prophet Muhammad , and George Washington , as well as several histories of 15th century Spain that deal with subjects such as Alhambra , Christopher Columbus , and the Moors. Irving served as ambassador to Spain from to He made his literary debut in with a series of observational letters to the Morning Chronicle , written under the pseudonym Jonathan Oldstyle. He moved to England for the family business in where he achieved fame with the publication of The Sketch Book of Geoffrey Crayon, Gent. He continued to publish regularly throughout his life, and he completed a five-volume biography of George Washington just eight months before his death at age 76 in Tarrytown, New York.
The favourite and last of 11 children of an austere Presbyterian father and a genial Anglican mother, young, frail Irving grew up in an atmosphere of indulgence. He escaped a college education, which his father required of his older sons, but read intermittently at the law, notably in the office of Josiah Ogden Hoffman, with whose pretty daughter Matilda he early fell in love. He wrote a series of whimsically satirical essays over the signature of Jonathan Oldstyle, Gent. He made several trips up the Hudson, another into Canada for his health, and took an extended tour of Europe in — On his return he passed the bar examination late in and soon set up as a lawyer. But during —08 his chief occupation was to collaborate with his brother William and James K.
Washington Irving probably got more out of his ordinary talent than many other writers of his day who were said to be legends from the cradle. It was Irving, along with Poe and Hawthorne , that set the bar high for aspiring American short-story authors., Both of his parents emigrated from England to New York twenty years earlier, and his father became a merchant to support the family. By , he made the bold decision to try to make a living through writing alone.
Washington Irving April 3, —November 28, was a writer, essayist, historian, biographer, and diplomat most famous for the short stories " Rip Van Winkle " and " The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Washington Irving has been called the father of the American short story because of his early and unique contributions to the form. His father William was a Scottish-American merchant, and his mother Sarah Sanders was the daughter of an English clergyman. At the time of his birth, the American Revolution was just ending. His parents were patriotic. His mother said upon the birth of her 11th child, "[General] Washington's work is ended and the child shall be named after him.
SHOULD the old schoolmaster re-emerge from Sleepy Hollow, he would be recognized immediately, ''tall, but exceedingly lank, with narrow shoulders, long arms and legs, hands that dangled a mile out of his sleeves, feet that might have served for shovels and his whole frame most loosely hung together. Today is the th birthday of the creator of Ichabod Crane, Rip van Winkle, the renowned Wouter van Twiller; the magical storyteller who filled the Hudson Valley with ferocious ghosts, ''haunted fields, haunted brooks, haunted bridges and haunted houses,'' and who established the Knickerbocker tradition in New York. Washington Irving, certainly the county's most famous resident, became one of the nation's most beloved and respected citizens and is considered by many as this country's first genuinely American author. The village of Irvington renamed itself in his honor during his lifetime and by the time he died in , both the man and his house in Tarrytown were almost national shrines. A romantic best remembered for his humorous sketches, Washington Irving conceded that he ''looked at things poetically rather than politically.
Irving also served as the U. The youngest of 11 children of Scottish-English immigrant parents William Sr. Educated privately, Irving began writing essays under the pen name Jonathan Oldstyle for the Morning Chronicle , which was edited by older brother Peter. After touring Europe from , he returned to New York City to practice law — through by his own admission, he was not a good student, and in he barely passed the bar. Preferring to indulge his creative impulses, Irving teamed with friend James Kirke Paulding and oldest brother William to publish Salamagundi , a periodical of humorous essays.