James Ralph

(c. 1705—1762) historian and political writer

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(c.1705–62), probably born in America, accompanied Franklin to London (1724), where he remained to establish himself as a poet, historian, journalist, and dramatist. His ballad opera The Fashionable Lady (1730) was the first play by an American to be produced in London. Although he was associated with Garrick in political journalism, Fielding in theatrical journalism, and Franklin in the writing of An Historical Review of the Constitution and Government of Pennsylvania (1759), Ralph was primarily a hack writer. He figures in Franklin's Autobiography.

From The Oxford Companion to American Literature in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Literature.

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