IDW: In Memoriam - John Lewis, Congressman, Icon, Beloved Author

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Rediscover: A Journal of the Plague Year

Over the course of 18 months between 1665 and 1666, the Great Plague of London killed roughly 100,000 people, nearly a quarter of the city's population. Daniel Defoe, later author of Robinson Crusoe, was five years old at the time. In 1722, having established himself as a novelist, Defoe published A Journal of the Plague Year under the name "H.F." Defoe's uncle, Henry Foe, like the protagonist in A Journal of the Plague Year, worked as a saddler in the Whitechapel district of East London during the Great Plague. Critics consider Defoe's uncle's records the primary source for A Journal of the Plague Year, with casualty tables and other anecdotes later compiled through Defoe's research. Whether Defoe is deemed more author or editor for A Journal of the Plague Year, none of the tales within--grim accounts of a city and individuals grappling with unimaginable tragedy--have ever been debunked. A Journal of the Plague Year was last published in 2003 by Penguin Classics (9780140437850). --Tobias Mutter