ohnson was born in Lichfield, England, on September 18,
1709; his father Michael was a bookseller. Johnson was
not a healthy infant, and there was considerable
question as to whether he would survive: he was
baptized almost immediately. Johnson was scarred from
scrofula, and suffered a loss of hearing and was blind in
one eye, thanks largely to nursing from a tubercular
nursemaid. During his toddler years, he had an open
"issue" in his arm, to drain fluids. Stop for a moment, and
think about a small child being singled out in this way,
and what it must have meant.