One-minute review: Wrote the essays so his relatives and friends can remember him as a person. The subject of his essays is himself.
Quote: “I intended it solely for the solace of my kinsfolk and friends: that, when they have lost me (as they must do before long), they may recover in it [his book of essays] some lines of my character and humors, and by this means more fully and vividly cherish me in their memory.”
Quote: So, reader, I am myself the subject of my book: it is not reasonable to expect you to waste your leisure on a matter so frivolous and empty.”
Great Essays. Ed. Houston Peterson.
What is an essay? “They are all prefaces. A preface is nothing but a talk with the reader; and they [essays] do nothing else.” Charles Lamb.