Like many of the neighbouring streets and roads in Manadon, Boswell Close is named after a great British writer. The writer was James Boswell, the son of a Scottish judge. Born in 1740 and educated privately in Edinburgh, Boswell studied civil law at Glasgow until he was 20. He then ran away to London, seeking literary fame. He met Samuel Johnson in 1763, before leaving for Utrecht to finish his legal studies. He didn’t stay for long though, and was off on a tour of Europe after a winter in Holland. During the journey he introduced himself to French author Voltaire and French landscape painter Rousseau. He was later introduced to Paoli, ‘the hero of Corsica’, whom he wrote about in Account of Corsica.
In 1766 Boswell became a lawyer, and joined Dr. Johnson’s famous literary club, in 1773. He accompanied the celebrated Doctor on a trip to the Hebrides the same year, and later documented it in The Journal of the Tour of the Hebrides. The success of the which, prompted him to write his most famous work, The Life of Samuel Johnson.