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Jonathan Swift

             Jonathan Swift was a great social critic. He remains England's greatest master of prose satire. Swift had the gift for making other people uncomfortable in many ways he also inspired people by his writings. His life, accomplishments and his writing are what makes Jonathan Swift so important during the Renaissance Period.
             Swift was born November 30, 1667 in Dublin, Ireland. Swift's father was a lawyer and an English civil servant; he died seven months before his son was born. Abigail Erick, his mother, was left without private income to support her family. Swift was taken or stolen to England by his nurse, and at the age of four he was sent back to Ireland. His mother returned to England and she left her son to her wealthy brother-in-law Uncle Godwin. When Jonathan returned to Ireland in September he was accompanied by Stella. There's a great deal of mystery and controversy over Swift's relationship with Stella. Many people believe that they were secretly married in 1716. Swift's mother had left with her only other child, Jane to live in her native town of Leicester. Swift continued to regard his mother with undiminished affection and respect. Her death, though preceded by a tedious illness, shook and depressed him profoundly. The lonely life of a fatherless child is later reflected in Swift's relationships with women. Jonathan Swift's melancholy and depression increased and as the unhappy years passed his mind gradually declined. His physical illness (mainly deafness and vertigo) made him helpless fighting the insanity he feared which ultimately overcame him.
             Swift studied at Kilkenny Grammar School (1674-82) and Trinity College in Dublin (1682-89) receiving his B.A. in 1868 and M.A. in1692. At school Swift was not a very good student and his teachers noted his headstrong behavior. He worked for Sir William Temple at Moore Park as a secretary (1689-95, 1696-99) but did not like his position as a servant in the household.

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