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The First Magazine

The Gentleman's Magazine unaccountably passes for the earliest

periodical of that description; while, in fact, it was preceded nearly

forty years by the Gentleman's Journal of Motteux, a work much more

closely resembling our modern magazines, and from which Sylvanus Urban

borrowed part of his title, and part of his motto; while on the first

page of the first number of the Gentleman's Magazine itself, it is

stated to co
tain "more than any book of the kind and price."

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This ingenious woman was the daughter of Joshua and Sarah Kirby, and was

born at Ipswich, January 6, 1741. Kirby taught George the Third, when

Prince of Wales, perspective and architecture. He was also President of

the Society of Artists of Great Britain, out of which grew the Royal

Academy. It was the last desire of Gainsborough to be buried beside his

old friend Kirby, and their tombs adjoin each other in the churchyard at


Mrs. Trimmer, when a girl, was constantly reading Milton's Paradise

Lost; and this circumstance so pleased Dr. Johnson, that he invited her

to see him, and presented her with a copy of his Rambler. She also

repeatedly met Sir Joshua Reynolds, Dr. Gregory, Sharp, Hogarth, and

Gainsborough, with all of whom her father was on terms of intimacy. Mrs.

Trimmer advocated religious education against the latitudinarian views

of Joseph Lancaster. It was at her persuasion that Dr. Bell entered the

field, and paved the way for the establishment of the National Society.

Mrs. Trimmer died, in her seventieth year, in 1810. She was seated at

her table reading a letter, when her head sunk upon her bosom, and she

"fell asleep;" and so gentle was the wafting, that she seemed for some

time in a refreshing slumber, which her family were unwilling to


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