Page:Dictionary of National Biography volume 31.djvu/23

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is not, neither can it be, Immortal,’ 8vo, Dublin, 1751; which was followed by ‘A Reply to the Grand Question Debated; fully Proving that the Soul of Man is, and must be, Immortal,’ 8vo, London, 1751, dedicated to the Archbishop of Canterbury. This was his first experiment in the plan of answering himself when no one else cared to do so (cf. his Pasquinade, p. 18 n.) In 1752 he published a burlesque called ‘Fun: a Paroditragi-comical Satire,’ attacking Fielding and Dr. John Hill (1716?–1775) [q. v.] An intended private performance at the Castle Tavern, Paternoster Row, on 13 Feb. 1752, was suppressed, at Fielding's desire, by a special order from the lord mayor and court of aldermen. It was anonymously printed, and copies were presented to all who had taken tickets (Baker, Biog. Dram. 1812, ii. 253). Kenrick next attacked Hill (anonymously) in ‘The Pasquinade. With Notes variorum. Book the First,’ 4to, London, 1753. A second book, apparently never written, was to have libelled Christopher Smart, with whom he was at the time involved in controversy. According to Kenrick's account, Smart had advertised an ‘Old Woman's Dunciad,’ directed against Kenrick, but Kenrick had immediately published a piece under the same title, upon which Smart abandoned his design (Pasquinade, p. 20 n.) During the same year Kenrick wrote an imitation of Dodsley's ‘Œconomy of Human Life’ (which then passed for Lord Chesterfield's), called ‘The Whole Duty of Woman. By a Lady. Written at the desire of a Noble Lord,’ 12mo, London, 1753; 3rd edition the same year. In 1756 he published without his name a few copies of a philosophical poem in octosyllabics, called ‘Epistles to Lorenzo,’ 8vo, London, which obtained the praises of the ‘Critical Review’ (iii. 162–7). It was republished with alterations as ‘Epistles, Philosophical and Moral,’ 8vo, London, 1759 [1758]; 4th edition, as ‘Epistles to Lorenzo,’ 1773. Its sceptical tone having been censured in the ‘Critical Review’ (vi. 439–53), Kenrick defended himself in an anonymous pamphlet called ‘A Scrutiny, or the Criticks criticis'd,’ &c., 8vo, London, 1759.

In January 1759 Kenrick was appointed to succeed Goldsmith as a writer in the ‘Monthly Review,’ and states that he contributed the review of foreign literature for vols. xxiii. to xxxiii. He also reviewed Goldsmith's ‘Enquiry’ in November 1759 (xxi. 389), inserting at the request of the proprietor, Ralph Griffiths [q. v.], so vile an attack upon Goldsmith that even Griffiths was ashamed of it. Kenrick was therefore instructed to explain away his insinuations in a favourable critique of Goldsmith's ‘Citizen of the World,’ which appeared in the ‘Monthly Review’ for June 1762 (xxvi. 477).

Kenrick (anonymously) translated Rousseau's ‘Eloisa,’ 4 vols. 12mo, Dublin, 1761, and ‘Emilius,’ 3 vols. 12mo, Edinburgh, 1763. For the ‘Eloisa’ he received the degree of LL.D. from Marischal College and University of Aberdeen. He also translated Rousseau's ‘Miscellaneous Works,’ 5 vols. 12mo, London, 1767.

Kenrick assailed Johnson's ‘Shakespeare’ (published October 1765), not without a certain coarse smartness, in ‘A Review of Dr. Johnson's new edition of Shakespeare; in which the Ignorance, or Inattention of that Editor is exposed, and the Poet defended from the Persecution of his Commentators,’ 8vo, London, 1765 (Boswell, Life of Johnson, ed. G. B. Hill, i. 497). A threatened continuation never appeared, nor did a promised castigation of Johnson's ‘Dictionary,’ to be entitled ‘A Ramble through the Idler's Dictionary: in which are picked up several thousand Etymological, Orthographical, and Lexicographical Blunders.’ Kenrick's attention was diverted by a pamphlet written by an Oxford student named Barclay, entitled ‘An Examination of Mr. Kenrick's Review’ [of Johnson's ‘Shakespeare’], 1766. He retaliated with ‘A Defence of Dr. Kenrick's Review. … By a Friend,’ subscribed ‘R. R.,’ 8vo, London, 1766. Johnson was displeased with Barclay for doing what he disdained to do for himself (ib. ii. 209, v. 273). Kenrick again attacked Johnson in ‘An Epistle to J. Boswell, Esq., occasioned by his having transmitted the Moral Writings of Dr. S. Johnson to Pascal Paoli: with a Postscript, containing Thoughts on Liberty; and a Parallel after the manner of Plutarch, between the celebrated Patriot of Corte and John Wilkes, Esq., M.P. By W. K., Esq.,’ 8vo, London, 1768. At Johnson's request Boswell refrained from answering that and another scurrilous libel by Kenrick, called ‘A Letter to James Boswell, Esq., on the Moral System of the Idler,’ 8vo.

Kenrick used to lecture at the ‘Devil,’ Temple Bar, and other taverns on every conceivable subject, from Shakespeare to the perpetual motion, which he thought he had discovered. Soon after his attack on Johnson he issued proposals for a new edition of ‘Shakespeare,’ with a commentary ‘in a manner hitherto unattempted.’ A few people were foolish enough to subscribe. After eight years had passed he informed them that, in consequence of George Steevens's commentary, the ‘intended publication’ was for the present ‘laid aside.’ To console his subscribers he presented them with a meagre