Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Dennis, John, born in London in 1657, and educated at Harrow and Cambridge, adopted literature as a profession and may be regarded as a typical Grub Street hack. He was not deficient in a sort of vulgar ability, and by composing adulatory poems on William III. and Marlborough, got a post in the Customs. Two of his plays, Liberty Asserted and A Plot and No Plot, enjoyed considerable popularity. He is chiefly remembered, however, for his critical attacks on Addison's Cato and Pope's Essay on Criticism. The first provoked an amusing pamphlet called The Narrative of the Frenzy of Mr. John Dennis, and the last secured him a place in The Dunciad. In his closing years he became blind and impoverished, dying in 1734.