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THOMAS CARLYLE (1795-1881), was born at Ecclefechan, in Dumfriesshire, the son of a stonemason, and was educated at Annan Academy and the University of Edinburgh, where he was affected by the legacy of the Scottish Enlightenment. He studied German literature; his life of Schiller appeared in the London Magazine in 1823-4 and was separately published in 1825. His translations of Goethe´s “Wilhelm Meister´s Apprenticeship” and “Wilhelm Meister´s Travels” appeared in 1824 and 1827 respectively. “Signs of the Times”, an attack on Utilitarianism appeared in 1829. “Sartor Resarius” followed in 1834. In 1834 Carlyle moved to Cheyne Row, Chelsea, where he worked on his “History of the French Revolution” (1837). This work established Carlyle´s reputation. His series of lectures “On Heroes, Hero-Worship and the Heroic in History”, published in 1841, attracted glittering and fashionable audiences and brought him new and influential friends. In “Chartism” (1839) and “Past and Present” (1843), Carlyle applied himself to what he called the Condition-of-England question, attacking both laissez-faire and the dangers of revolution it encouraged, castigatin an economic and political climate where Cash Payment had become “the sole nexus between man and man”.
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