a political writer and novelist, the son of a Presbyterian minister, born at Wisbeach, Somersetshire; was educated for the Church, and was for five years in the ministry; during this period his opinions on politics and religion underwent a radical change, and when in 1787 he threw up his holy office to engage in literature, he had become a republican in the one and a free-thinker in the other; various works had come from his pen, including three novels, before his celebrated "Political Justice" appeared in 1793, "Caleb Williams," a novel, and his best-known work, being published in the following year; in 1797 he married Mary Wollstonecraft (See GODWIN, MARY WOLLSTONECRAFT), who died the same year, and four years later he married a widow, Mrs. Clement; to the close of his long life he was a prolific writer on literary, historical, and political subjects, but his carelessness and lack of business habits left him little profit from all his literary activity; his writings are clear and vigorous in the expression, if visionary and impracticable in theory (1756-1836).

The Nuttall Encyclopaedia. . 1907.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Godwin, William — born March 3, 1756, Wisbech, Isle of Ely, Cambridgeshire, Eng. died April 7, 1836, London British writer. He became a Presbyterian minister but soon lost his faith. His Enquiry Concerning Political Justice (1793) captivated Samuel Taylor… …   Universalium

  • Godwin, William — (1756–1836) English writer and social reformer. Godwin enjoyed a long but mainly undistinguished career as a writer, but his great decade was the 1790s, when he became famous as a prominent defender of radicalism and anarchism . His principal… …   Philosophy dictionary

  • Godwin,William — God·win (gŏdʹwĭn), William. 1756 1836. British writer and political theorist who believed in the perfectibility of human nature and maintained that people could live harmoniously without laws and institutions. His most important work is Enquiry… …   Universalium

  • Godwin, William — ► (1756 1836) Sociólogo y novelista británico. Fue precursor del anarquismo. * * * (3 mar. 1756, Wisbech, Isle of Ely, Cambridgeshire, Inglaterra–7 abr. 1836, Londres). Escritor británico. Fue ministro presbiteriano, pero perdió pronto la fe. Su… …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Godwin, William — (1756 1836)    Philosopher and novelist, b. at Wisbeach, and ed. at a school in Norwich, to which city his f., a Presbyterian minister, had removed, and subsequently at a Presbyterian coll. at Hoxton, with a view to the ministry. From 1778 to… …   Short biographical dictionary of English literature

  • Godwin — Godwin, William …   Philosophy dictionary

  • William Godwin — (* 3. März 1756 in Wisbech, Cambridgeshire; † 7. April 1836) war ein englischer Schriftsteller und Sozialphilosoph. Auf Grund seines Hauptwerks Enquiry Concerning Political Justice, das 1792 erschien, gilt er als Begründer des So …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • GODWIN (W.) — GODWIN WILLIAM (1756 1836) Écrivain et philosophe anglais. William Godwin est né à Wisbech, dans le Cambridgeshire; son père, qui était pasteur, l’éleva dans la plus pure tradition puritaine. Calvinistes tous deux, ses parents l’envoyèrent faire… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • William Coward (merchant) — William Coward (1648–1738) was a London merchant in the Jamaica trade, remembered for his support of Dissenters, particularly his educational philanthropy. Contents 1 Life 2 Legacy 3 Notes 4 References …   Wikipedia

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