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Watts, Isaac (1674-1748)

Isaac Watts, 1674-1748. Isaac Watts, 1674-1748.

Isaac Watts was an English theologian who in 1715 published Divine Songs Attempted in Easy Language for Children. The book was widely used in English schools in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and eventually there were over one thousand editions published.

Various poems from the book were used as a source for verses for English morality samplers. Two poems were particularly popular: 'Against Idleness and Mischief' (also known as 'How doth the little busy bee'). This poem was later parodied by Lewis Carroll in the poem 'How doth the little crocodile' (published in 1865). Another famous poem was 'The Sluggard' ('Tis the voice of the sluggard'). Both poems were meant to teach children the importance of hard work.

Digital source of illustration (retrieved 1st July 2016).

GVE

 

Last modified on Tuesday, 02 May 2017 19:46