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Fennimore Cooper

(1789-1851)

American Author
A pioneer of the American Literature

The the son of Quakers, Judge William Cooper and Elisabeth Fennimore Cooper, was born at Burlington, New Jersey.


He began his writer's career with Precaution (1820) after his wife had challenged him to write a better book than the one he was reading.

Precaution, however, turned to be an unfortunate imitation of Jane Austen's prose. James Fennimore, after inspiring himself from some of Sir Walter Scott's works, published the Spy in 1821. Later, after 1826, he met Walter Scott in Paris and they became close friends.


Precursor of Conrad and London , he began then a series of sea adventures, starting from The Pilot (1824), the first American sea tale, and followed by The Red Rover (1827) and many others.

He had a strong quarrel with Mark Twain, who criticized him in his essay titled "Fenomore Cooper's Literary Offenses" (1895).

Fennimore believed, like many of his contemporaries, that co-habitation of Indians and settlers was in the long run impossible, and that the Indian race was bound to disappear. But he was sentimentally against this view.

With his Last Of The Mohicans, Fennimore makes us feel that, behind the symbolic Indian, a substantial piece of Nature is cut off from our lives.

The theme of the Indian, as a symbol of Nature - or "mistreated" Nature -, has been used by many authors, like Aldous Huxley in his Brave New World.

portrait of Cooper  
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American Authors:  Adams Cather Chopin Cooper Crane
 Faulkner Gilman Ginzberg Hawthorne Irving
 Lewis London Lovecraft Marquis Melville
 Morris Poe Scott Fitzgerald Stowe Thoreau
 Twain Veblen Water West Wharton

Other Authors of Adventure genre:
Conrad Defoe Dumas Gogol
Jerome Kipling London Marquis Melville
Scott Twain Verne Wells

THE LAST OF THE MOHICANS (1826), James Fennimore Cooper's best known novel
is an adventure story set in the Lake Champlain, and has been filmed several times.

Fennimore Cooper is considered by many as a precursor in the American Literature to which he brought:

- With The Spy (1821) the first successful American historical romance in the vein of Sir Walter Scott

- With The Pilot (1824) , the first sea novel

- The first extensive History of the U.S.Navy (1839).

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper

Fennimore Cooper