Review copy - hardback first edition in very good condition. Intended for scholars and advanced students of 18th-century literature, philosophy, music, and linguistics.;This is the first full-length study of James Harris, the literary theorist, philosopher of language, musical impresario, politician, and friend of many leading figures of the 18th century. Best known as the author of "Three Treatises" (on literary theory) and "Hermes" his study of universal grammar, Harris's reputation has always stood higher in continental Europe than in his own country.;He led a culturally and politically rich and varied life, organizing distinguished music festivals and other cultural activities in his home city of Salisbury, serving as an MP, in the Treasury, and as Secretary to the Queen, and moving among the great writers and musicians of the day. These included Johnson, with whom he had many intellectual confrontations, Boswell, Henry and Sarah Fielding, Burke, Wilkes, Handel, J.C.Bach, and Dr Charles Burney whom he assisted in the "General History of Music". As a disciple of his uncle, the third Earl of Shaftesbury, Harris was in several important ways an opponent of the age's dominant intellectual currents and saw himself as a crusader, transmitting the classical traditions in literature and philosophy to English readers, against what he took to be the soulless materialism of his time. Using much previously inaccessible material this critical biography brings into focus an important but neglected figure at the heart of 18th century English culture.