Samuel Johnson was one of the most important literary figures of the 18th century, which was sometimes known as the Age of Johnson. He authored a pioneering dictionary of the English language, edited Shakespeare, composed poetry and drama, and wrote numerous prose works on moral, philosophical, religious, political, and domestic concerns. Immortalized through Boswell's biography, he is as well-known for his traits and habits (including his witty and combative manner of conversation) as for his prodigious achievements in the world of letters. This encyclopedia is a comprehensive guide to Johnson and his milieu. This pioneering volume contains more than 650 alphabetically arranged entries on every aspect of Johnson's life, career, and personality. It describes each of his works in detail, examining such matters as composition, publication, and reception. It gives up-to-date accounts of his attitude on key themes and concepts, and explores his central ideas on literary, moral, political, social, and religious questions. It provides biographies of all the persons with whom Johnson had any sort of real contact, ranging from his close friends in the world of the arts and publishing, to his domestic intimates and servants, his extended family, and even his cat. A full system of cross-referencing allows readers to locate subjects and entries with ease. This is a one-stop aid which will enable students and readers of Johnson to locate almost any fact about him quickly and easily, and will provide guidance for any more detailed research which may be called for.