BARLOW, JOEL, an Alnercian poet and politician, born in 1755 at Reading in Connecticut. In 1774, some years after his father's death, he was entered at Yale College, New Haven, where he soon began to manifest considerable taste for poetry and power of composition. A few small pieces published by him were received with some degree of public favour. During his vacations he had taken part with the colonists in several engagements against the British, and immediately after completing his course, he qualified himself for the church, and was appointed chaplain to a regiment. This post he held till the conclusion of peace between Britain and America, when he settled in the village of Hartford, and began to practise as a lawyer. He also conducted a newspaper, and about the same time published his best poem, the -Vision of Columbus, a vigorous and spirited piece of writing. About the year 1788 he gave up his newspaper and his legal practice, and came to Europe as the agent for a land company. Having discovered that this company was merely a swindling concern, he severed his connection with it, but did not return to America. In London he became acquainted with some of the most advanced liberal thinkers, and published several political tracts of 'a decidedly revolutionary character. In 1193, after having been some time in France, he accompanied the Commission of the National Convention, which was sent to organize the newly-acquired territory in Savoy. During his residence in Paris he engaged in commercial transactions, by which he acquired considerable fortune and importance. In 1795 he was appointed American consul at Algiers, and efficiently discharged the duties of that office. In 1805 he returned to America and began to interest himself in the politics of his own country. A pamphlet of his, sketching a plan of national education, was received with great favour. In 1808 he published an enlarged edition of his great poem, under the title Columbiad. It was magnificently illustrated, but did not achieve the popularity of its predecessor. In 1811 he was appointed minister plenipotentiary to France, with the object mainly of negotiating a commercial treaty and of obtaining compensation for some American property that had been unjustly confiscated. To accomplish this he required a personal interview with Napoleon, and set out to meet the emperor, who was at Wilna. On his way he was attacked with inflammation of the lungs, and died at a Polish village near Cracow, on the 22d December 1812.