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instances, it was utterly impossible to discover the reason, would have been perfectly ridicu. lous ; to omit them altogether appeared an act of violence. The editor, therefor, has not the vanity to hope that either the retention or the omiffion will satisfy the more critical reader; being utterly unable to discover any principle which will justify either the one or the other. It is however to be wished that, except in fixed and given instances, they could be entirely laid aside; being no more necessary, one would think, to the works of Pope or Swift than to those of Virgil or Horace.
As it has been thought advisable to publish the first of these volumes before the others can be printed, it is earnestly requested that those who possess the dates of the birth and death of FITZGERALD, BRAMSTON, FAWKES, SIR CHARLES HANBURY WILLIAMS, SMART, MERRICK, LLOYD, LANGHORNE, DR. Cor. TON, HALL STEVENSON; LADY MARY
WORTLEY MONTAGUE, MRS. BARBER, and MISS MARY JONES, will be kind enough to communicate them to the publisher, in order that the selections from those poets may
be duly arranged : and even the births of SIR John HARINGTON, DUKE, SIR SAMUEL GARTH, FENTON, BROOME, and SomerVILE, may be made use of in a future edition, should the collection be found to deserve it. One should indeed have naturally concluded that these important facts, for such the birth and death of a man of merit or eminence undoubtedly are, would be found in the lives that have been written of almost all the persons juft named; but, in short, many of these lives, even in the excellent biographical prefaces of Dr. Johnson, may be carefully perused without betraying even the century in which the author made so distinguished a figure.-Any suggestion, at the same time, for the improvement of the work, in matter, method, accuracy, or
elegance, will be gratefully received, and properly attended to.
It were, perhaps, to be wished, that the collection could have commenced at an earlyer period; but the editor is sufficiently familiar with the poetical productions of preceding centuries to pronounce with confidence, that no composition of a moderate length is to be found, prior to the year 1500, which would be thought to deserve a place in these volumes ; the nicety of the present age being ill disposed to make the necessary allowances for the uncouth diction and homely fentiments of former times. Nor will any person be forward to rescue such things from oblivion, while the attempt exposes him to the malignant and ruffian-like attacks of some hackney scribbler or personal enemy, through the medium of one or other of two periodical publications, in which the most illiberal abuse is vented under colour of impartial criticism, and both the literary and moral character of every man who wishes to make his peculiar studies contribute to the information or amusement of society are at the mercy of a conceited pedant, or dark and cowardly affaffin. The editor, at the same time, by no means flatters himself, that either the omifsion of what is oba scure and unintelligible, or the insertion of every thing elegant and refined, will be sufficient to protect these volumes from the rancorous malice and envenomed slander of the reviewing critic. He appeals, however, from the partial cenfures of a mercenary and malevolent individual, to the judgement and candour of a generous and discerning public, whose approbation is proposed as the sole reward of his disinterefted labours.
It ought to be mentioned, in justice to the present compilation, that it was made many years ago : nor should it, perhaps, if it could, be concealed that the idea originated from a fight of the elegant French song-book, intitled L'ANTHOLOGIE FRANÇOISE.
love. By Sir Thomas Wyatt, From “ Poems
of Henry Howard, earl of Surrey, &c;" 1717
Eclogue. By Edmund Spenser. From bis “Works,”
Şonnet. By William Shakspeare. From his “ Son-