Colonel Jack

Colonel Jack

by Daniel Defoe

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Long dismissed by critics as a novel of merely historical interest, Colonel Jack is one of Daniel Defoe’s most entertaining, revealing, and complex works. It is the supposed autobiography of an English gentleman who begins life as a child of the London streets. He and his brothers are brought up as pickpockets and highwaymen, but Jack seeks to improve himself. Kidnapped and taken to America, he becomes first a slave, then an overseer on plantations in Maryland. Jack’s story is one of dramatic turns of fortune that ultimately lead to a life of law-abiding prosperity as a plantation owner.

Historical appendices relate to eighteenth-century Virginia and Maryland and to contemporary crime, punishment, and imprisonment.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781535500777
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 07/26/2016
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 218
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.46(d)

About the Author

Gabriel Cervantes is Assistant Professor of English at the University of North Texas.

Geoffrey Sill is Professor of English at Rutgers University and the co-editor of the Broadview Edition of Frances Burney’s The Witlings and The Woman-Hater.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
Daniel Defoe: A Brief Chronology
A Note on the Text

Colonel Jack

Appendix A: Historical and Political Contexts

  1. From George Alsop, A Character of the Province of Mary-Land (1666)
  2. From The Confession and Execution of the Prisoners at Tyburn … (1676)
  3. From William Fleetwood, A Sermon Preached before the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (1711)
  4. From The Jacobites Detected (1718)
  5. From An Act for the further Preventing Robbery, Burglary and other Felonies, and for the more effectual Transportation of Felons … (1718)
  6. “Compassion on Famishing Thieves,” Applebee’s Original Weekly Journal (16 June 1722)
  7. “On the Return to England of Transported Felons,” Applebee’s Original Weekly Journal (26 January 1723)
  8. “A Plea for Charity Schools,” Applebee’s Original Weekly Journal (23 July 1723)
  9. From Batty Langley, An Accurate Description of Newgate (1724)
  10. From Daniel Defoe, Conjugal Lewdness: or, Matrimonial Whoredom (1727)

Appendix B: Literary Contexts

  1. James Revel, The Poor Unhappy Transported Felon’s Sorrowful Account of His Fourteen Years Transportation at Virginia in America (c. 1659–80)
  2. From Street-Robberies, Consider’d: The Reason of their Being so Frequent (1728)
  3. Preface to the Fourth Edition of Colonel Jack (1738)
  4. “Of some our MODERNS,” London Magazine and Monthly Chronologer (February 1741)
  5. Benjamin Franklin, Notices and Editorials on Convict Transportation
    1. “London, Jan. 27,” Daily Journal (27 January 1724)
    2. “Jakes on our Tables?,” The Pennsylvania Gazette (11 April 1751)
    3. “Rattle-Snakes for Felons,” The Pennsylvania Gazette (9 May 1751)
  6. From The Fortunate Transport (c. 1750)
  7. From a Letter from Erasmus Darwin to Josiah Wedgwood (22 February 1789)
  8. Robert Southey, “Elinor” (1797)
  9. Remarks on Defoe by Charles Lamb
    1. From a Letter to Walter Wilson (16 December 1822)
    2. From “Estimate of [Defoe’s] Secondary Novels” (1830)
  10. Edward E. Hale, Preface to The Life of Colonel Jack (1891)

Works Cited and Select Bibliography

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