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Biography : Jonathan Swift


Jonathan Swift (30 November 1667 – 19 October 1745) was an Anglo-Irish satirist, essayist, political pamphleteer (first for the Whigs, then for the Tories), poet and cleric who became Dean of St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.

Swift is remembered for works such as Gulliver's Travels, A Modest Proposal, A Journal to Stella, Drapier's Letters, The Battle of the Books, An Argument Against Abolishing Christianity and A Tale of a Tub. He is regarded by the Encyclopædia Britannica as the foremost prose satirist in the English language, and is less well known for his poetry. He originally published all of his works under pseudonyms – such as Lemuel Gulliver, Isaac Bickerstaff, Drapier's Letters as MB Drapier – or anonymously. He is also known for being a master of two styles of satire, the Horatian and Juvenalian styles.

His deadpan, ironic writing style, particularly in A Modest Proposal, has led to such satire being subsequently termed "Swiftian".

Jonathan Swift was born on 30 November 1667 in Dublin, Ireland. He was the second child and only son of Jonathan Swift (1640–1667) and his wife Abigail Erick (or Herrick), of Frisby on the Wreake. His father, a native of Goodrich, Herefordshire, accompanied his brothers to Ireland to seek their fortunes in law after their Royalist father's estate was brought to ruin during the English Civil War. Swift's father died in Dublin about seven months before he was born. His mother returned to England after his birth, leaving him in the care of his influential uncle, Godwin, a close friend and confidant of Sir John Temple, whose son later employed Swift as his secretary.
House in which Swift was born, 1865 illustration

Swift's family had several interesting literary connections: his grandmother, Elizabeth (Dryden) Swift, was the niece of Sir Erasmus Dryden, grandfather of the poet John Dryden. The same grandmother's aunt, Katherine (Throckmorton) Dryden, was a first cousin of Elizabeth, wife of Sir Walter Raleigh. His great-great grandmother, Margaret (Godwin) Swift, was the sister of Francis Godwin, author of The Man in the Moone which influenced parts of Swift's Gulliver's Travels. His uncle, Thomas Swift, married a daughter of the poet and playwright Sir William Davenant, a godson of William Shakespeare.

Swift's uncle Godwin Swift (1628–1695), a benefactor, took primary responsibility for the young Jonathan, sending him with one of his cousins to Kilkenny College (also attended by the philosopher George Berkeley). In 1682, financed by Godwin's son Willoughby, he attended Dublin University (Trinity College, Dublin), from which he received his B.A. in 1686, and developed his friendship with William Congreve. Swift was studying for his master's degree when political troubles in Ireland surrounding the Glorious Revolution forced him in 1688 to leave for England, where his mother helped him get a position as secretary and personal assistant of Sir William Temple at Moor Park, Farnham. Temple was an English diplomat who, having arranged the Triple Alliance of 1668, had retired from public service to his country estate to tend his gardens and write his memoirs. Gaining his employer's confidence, Swift "was often trusted with matters of great importance". Within three years of their acquaintance, Temple had introduced his secretary to William III and sent him to London to urge the King to consent to a bill for triennial Parliaments.

When Swift took up his residence at Moor Park, he met Esther Johnson, then eight years old, the daughter of an impoverished widow who acted as companion to Temple's sister, Lady Giffard. Swift acted as her tutor and mentor, giving her the nickname "Stella", and the two maintained a close but ambiguous relationship for the rest of Esther's life.

In 1690, Swift left Temple for Ireland because of his health but returned to Moor Park the following year. The illness, fits of vertigo or giddiness – now known to be Ménière's disease—would continue to plague Swift throughout his life. During this second stay with Temple, Swift received his M.A. from Hart Hall, Oxford in 1692. Then, apparently despairing of gaining a better position through Temple's patronage, Swift left Moor Park to become an ordained priest in the Established Church of Ireland, and in 1694 he was appointed to the prebend of Kilroot in the Diocese of Connor, with his parish located at Kilroot, near Carrickfergus in County Antrim.

Swift appears to have been miserable in his new position, being isolated in a small, remote community far from the centres of power and influence. While at Kilroot, however, Swift may well have become romantically involved with Jane Waring, whom he called "Varina", the sister of an old college friend. A letter from him survives, offering to remain if she would marry him and promising to leave and never return to Ireland if she refused. She presumably refused, because Swift left his post and returned to England and Temple's service at Moor Park in 1696, and he remained there until Temple's death. There he was employed in helping to prepare Temple's memoirs and correspondence for publication. During this time Swift wrote The Battle of the Books, a satire responding to critics of Temple's Essay upon Ancient and Modern Learning (1690), though Battle was not published until 1704.

Temple died on 27 January 1699. Swift, normally a harsh judge of human nature, said that all that was good and amiable in humankind had died with Temple. Swift stayed on briefly in England to complete the editing of Temple's memoirs, and perhaps in the hope that recognition of his work might earn him a suitable position in England. Unfortunately, Swift's work made enemies among some of Temple's family and friends, in particular Temple's formidable sister, Lady Giffard, who objected to indiscretions included in the memoirs. Swift's next move was to approach King William directly, based on his imagined connection through Temple and a belief that he had been promised a position. This failed so miserably that he accepted the lesser post of secretary and chaplain to the Earl of Berkeley, one of the Lords Justice of Ireland. However, when he reached Ireland he found that the secretaryship had already been given to another. He soon obtained the living of Laracor, Agher, and Rathbeggan, and the prebend of Dunlavin in St Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin.

At Laracor, just over four and half miles (7.5 km) from Summerhill, County Meath, and twenty miles (32 km) from Dublin, Swift ministered to a congregation of about fifteen and had abundant leisure for cultivating his garden, making a canal (after the Dutch fashion of Moor Park), planting willows, and rebuilding the vicarage. As chaplain to Lord Berkeley, he spent much of his time in Dublin and travelled to London frequently over the next ten years. In 1701, Swift anonymously published a political pamphlet, A Discourse on the Contests and Dissentions in Athens and Rome.

 
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What to Do When Your Boss Is Younger Than You

By Catherine Conlan
Monster Contributing Writer

There are always going to be challenges associated with generational differences in the workplace, but some people find dealing with a younger boss to be especially difficult. If you’re older than your boss, here are some things you should keep in mind.

Show Some Respect
One of the most important things to remember when your boss is younger than you is to show respect, says Robin Throckmorton, president of Strategic HR Inc. “While he or she may be younger, they wouldn’t be in this role if someone didn’t feel they had a lot to offer the role, even if you disagree.”

While it can be easy to think, “my kids are younger than you” or “before you were even born, we…” Throckmorton says if you show respect for your boss, you’ll get it in return.

Be Flexible and Cooperative
Keeping an open mind and staying flexible about how things get done at the office are important when there’s an age difference between you and your boss, says Paul Bernard of Paul Bernard and Associates. “For example, you may be used to a lot of face-to-face meeting time, but your boss may prefer to handle a lot of his communications via text or instant messenger,” he says.

“Don't balk at this -- you'll come across as stubborn and old-fashioned. Instead, try to align yourself as best you can with your boss's management style. You might find that there are some real advantages to doing things differently.”

Bernard then recommends trying to figure out how you can complement your boss' strengths. “Your boss may be a mobile content maven but might need help navigating office politics or be able to use some historical context about your company and how things are typically done. If you can find a way to make your younger boss more successful, you'll help not only him/her but yourself as well.”

Remember Age Is Just a Number
An age difference can be a distraction, so try not to focus on it, says Kelly Hadous of Win The Room. “Don't pay attention to your boss's age! Age doesn't matter as long as your boss provides good leadership and strong guidance, and brings passion and motivation into the company and the team. Ride along with your boss; if you share the same willingness to grow the company and move the team forward, everything will just be fine, and age won't matter.

Communicate
No matter how old your boss is, it’s important to ensure you’re on the same page, and that requires clear communication. “Early on set a time to speak with your younger boss regarding expectations, style, and role clarity,” says Scott Span of Tolero Solutions. “Ask their preferred way of communication and delivery of requirements. Boomers and Millennials need to continue to dialogue, build trust, to put stereotypes to rest to maximize performance."

Focus on the Organization
You and your boss are a team, and you’re working to help build your department, division or company. “Keep focused on the vision of the company or division for which you're working, and praise alignment,” says business coach Wayne Pernell. “You get more of what you focus on and being focused on a bigger picture can interrupt the internal monologue stemming from generational differences.”

Be Sensitive
It can be hard to avoid holding forth with the wisdom you’ve accumulated over the years, but you should try. “Refrain from behaviors that drive younger generations crazy,” says Tammy Hughes, CEO of Claire Raines Associates and international speaker and consultant on generational issues. “Avoid comparing your manager to your son or daughter. Don’t act like a know-it-all. Nip cynicism and sarcasm in the bud.”
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Why are some people more successful than others? Why some feel accomplished while others feel like they are stuck in career rut? The answer is – their vocabulary. Though, granted, your vocabulary is heavily dependent on your mentality and the way you see your life, both personal and professional.

Here are the things you will probably never hear successful people say and the reasons why that’s the case:

It's impossible!
"This can't be done" is just not in their DNA. Successful people know that there is always a solution to any problem. Sometimes you’ll have to get creative, but there is no such thing as impossible. And when the goal seems too huge to accomplish, they tackle it in little pieces – they know that a lot of small steps eventually lead you to the top of the highest mountain.

I don't care!
Passion, on the other hand, is in their DNA. You will never hear innovators say "I hate my job!" or "I don’t care!" If you don’t have this key ingredient – passion coupled with vision – you will never be able to overcome challenges and take risks to push the envelope, innovate, and grow your business.

Stop asking questions!
Smart people know that there is no such thing as a "silly question." They know that as soon as curiosity halts and we stop asking questions, the radical innovation ends. Some of the most distinguished leaders, such as Steve Jobs and James Dyson, encouraged their teams to consistently question the way they should do things and challenge conventional wisdom. Their favorite questions are" "Why?" "Why not?" "What if?"

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Looking back, I remember very badly wanting a boyfriend in the third grade, so it didn't surprise me when I came across this list on The Huffington Post, authored by sisters Blaire and Brooke ages 6 and 9, of "boyfriend rules" for their future beaus. (Based, according to their mother, on boyfriend characters from Disney movies and shows like Shake it Up.)

What did surprise me was how precocious some of their requirements are, like "has a good job" and "respects you." I approached
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