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The Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides

Samuel Johnson - Author

James Boswell - Author

Peter Levi - Editor

Peter Levi - Introduction by

Peter Levi - Notes by

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ISBN 9780140432213 | 432 pages | 04 Sep 1984 | Penguin Classics | 5.07 x 7.79in | 18 - AND UP
Summary of The Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides Summary of The Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides Reviews for The Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides An Excerpt from The Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland and The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides
"I mentioned our design to Voltaire," wrote Boswell. "He looked at me as if I had talked of going to the North Pole …"

As it turned out, Johnson enjoyed their Scottish journey (although the land was not quite so wild and barbaric as perhaps he had hoped), and Boswell delighted in it. The year was 1773, they were sixty-three and thirty-two years old, and had been friends for ten years.

Their journals, published together here, perfectly complement each other. Johnson's majestic prose and hawk eye for curious detail take in everything from the stone arrowheads found in the Hebrides, to the 'medicinal' waters of Loch Ness and 'the mischiefs of emigration'. Meanwhile, it is very lucky that as Johnson was observing Scotland, Boswell was observing Johnson. His record is perceptive, highly entertaining and full of sardonic wit; for him, as for us, it is an appetizer for The Life of Johnson.