Tobias Smollett

1721 (Dalquhurn, Scotland) – 1771 (Livorno, Italy)

Hume knew Smollett, describing him as a coconut, rough outside but full of kindness within. It’s unclear whether Smollett actually met Handel, who wrote music for his unproduced play Alceste; though Handel describing him as a “damn fool” for arguing with the management (Rich or Garrick) of the Theatre Royal is well-noted. When Smollett visited Edinburgh, Smith visited him. The Hunters and Goldsmith were friends, and Johnson, Sterne and Garrick used to lunch with him in Chelsea, Johnson getting him to intercede with the navy when his black servant Barber ran away to sea. Sterne immortalised Smollett as ‘the learned Smelfungus’.