Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Gold from Mr. Goldsmith

I didn’t know much about Oliver Goldsmith until today. All I knew was that he wrote a famous book called The Vicar of Wakefield. On Wednesday evening, July 6, 1763, Goldsmith was in a conversation with Dr. Samuel Johnson, the great lexicographer, at the Mitre tavern. In many things Johnson was on the side of right, but when it came to politics he was immovably Torical (if I may create a new adjective describing one who is a Tory). In the face of Johnson’s defence of the arbitrary rule of King George III in which nothing the king did could be considered “wrong”, Goldsmith asserted, as recorded in Boswell’s Life of Johnson that “what was morally false could not be politically true.”

Need I say more?

- Kevin

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