Joseph Dennie


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(1768–1812), born in Boston and educated at Harvard, after a brief legal career turned to writing. At Walpole, N.H., he became the leader of a group of conservative Federalist literati, and edited the Farmer's Weekly Museum (1796–98), for which he wrote the graceful Lay Preacher essays. Under the pseudonym Colon he collaborated with Royall Tyler, who adopted the name Spondee, in contributing satirical prose and poetry to various newspapers. His later life was spent in Philadelphia, where he founded the Tuesday Club andedited The Port Folio (1801–9), for which he wrote further Lay Preacher essays, and for which he obtained original manuscripts from Thomas Moore, Leigh Hunt, and Thomas Campbell. Forty of his earlier essays were published in book form (1796), and another selection in 1816, but Dennie's reputation as an “American Addison” was eclipsed by that of Irving. His Letters were published in 1936.

From The Oxford Companion to American Literature in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Literature.

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