Jonathan Swift

(2483 words)
  • Paul Baines (University of Liverpool)

Jonathan Swift was born on 30 November 1667, in Dublin. His father, also Jonathan, who had emigrated from England to Ireland in 1660, died before he was born. His mother, Abigail Erick, had been born in Ireland. Swift was thus by birth a member of the protestant ascendancy which ruled an Ireland then largely under the administrative sway of England, though during his youth that position was complicated by the dynastic problems and Catholic leanings of Charles II and James II, and the ongoing struggle for power between the monarch and men of property. Before Swift was a year old, he was taken to England by his nurse, and remained apart from his mother for three years. From 1673 to 1682 he was educated at Kilkenny School, an Anglican …

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Baines, Paul. "Jonathan Swift". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 March 2002
[, accessed 29 November 2015.]

Articles on Swift's works

  1. A Modest Proposal
  2. A Tale of a Tub
  3. Gulliver's Travels
  4. Journal to Stella
  5. The Examiner