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is inevitable; but if the ayes to the right exceed the noes to the left sufficiently to give one what we used to call in the House of Commons “a good division," I shall be perfectly satisfied.
It was said of the Address out of which this volume arose, that "the personal equation was very much to the front” in it, and the same criticism will be made, with perfect justice, about the collection I am now publishing. I maintain, however, that in such a book as this “the personal equation ought to be very much to the front.” If the choice of poems is not thoroughly individual, the result will be good for very little. It is idle to dream of meeting the tastes of readers who belong to a dozen different schools. The collector must consider himself, and himself alone, to be responsible for what is taken or omitted, save in so far as his selection may be modified by copyright difficulties or other force majeure.
I have arranged the authors of whom I have to speak in three classes :
1. Poets who, born in the eighteenth century, lived on into the reign of Queen Victoria and did work during it.
2. Poets born in 1801 or later, who lived far into the reign of Queen Victoria, or even outlived it, but who are now dead.
3. Poets who wrote during the reign of Queen Victoria and are happily still with us.1
To each of these classes I have prefixed some brief introductory notes.
I trust that I have succeeded in presenting to the reader a large number of the best poems produced in
1 Sir Franklin Lushington, who heads this class, died, alas, whilst these sheets were passing through the press.
the age which it is intended to illustrate, but really the production of that age was so large that any one could put together a very respectable second volume of the same size as this, without drawing on the stores of any of the writers from whom I have quoted.
Some editors of Anthologies-Archbishop Trench, for example-have constrained themselves to give only complete poems, not extracts from poems. This selfdenying ordinance seems to me unkind alike to the poet and to the reader, for it involves the sacrifice of a great deal that is very valuable. To leave out the extracts which I make from St. Stephen's, for example, because I cannot reprint the whole poem, would surely be absurd.
It remains to express my gratitude to many friends, and to many whom I have not the honour to know personally, for the assistance I have received in a piece of work which has given me much agreeable employment.
Almost every one to whom my publishers or I applied for permission to print some of their poems were kindness and courtesy itself. Only in a very few cases were difficulties made which have prevented my including two or three pieces.
I have great pleasure in thanking the following ladies and gentlemen for permission to print their poems which appear in this volume :
Lady Currie (Violet Fane), Mrs. Meynell, Mrs. Earl, Miss E. M. P. Hickey, Miss May Probyn.
Messrs. George Meredith, William Watson, E. C. Pember, K.C., Austin Dobson, Algernon Swinburne, Edmund Gosse, A. Johnstone, Aubrey de Vere, C. K. Paul, Herman Merivale, J. W. Courthope, A. Simcox, F. Bourdillon, W. B. Yeats, A. P. Graves, H. Newbolt,
S. Waddington, Rudyard Kipling, Richard Le Gallienne, Stephen Phillips, Arthur E. Legge, Walter W. Greg, Laurence Binyon, Douglas Ainslie, Sir Edwin Arnold, K.C.I.E., C.S.I., Sir Lewis Morris, Sir Alfred Lyall, G.C.I.E., K.C.B., the late Sir Franklin Lushington, the Most Rev. W. Alexander, D.D., Primate of all Ireland, the Right Hon. W. H. Lecky, M.P., the President of Magdalen, Dr. Richard Garnett, C.B., the Rev. Father Ryder, the Earl of Crewe, Sir F. Pollock, Bart.
I am also indebted to the following for permission to
Messrs. Longmans & Co. for those of the late E. E.
Bowen. Messrs. Longmans & Co. for those of the late Cardinal
Newman. Messrs. Longmans & Co. for that of the late Jean
Ingelow. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for those of the late Pro
fessor Shairp. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for those of the late A. H.
Clough. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for those of the late C.
Kingsley. Messrs. Macmillan & Co, for those of the late Chris
tina Rossetti. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for that of the late Frederick
Myers. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for that of the late Hon.
Mrs. Norton. Messrs. Macmillan & Co. for those of Aubrey de Vere. Messrs. W. Blackwood & Sons for that of Moira
O'Neill. Messrs. Burns & Oates (Ltd.) for those of the late
Father Faber. Messrs. George Allen for that of the late J. Ruskin. Messrs. Smith & Elder for those of the late Robert
Browning Messrs. Ellis & Elvey for that of the late D. G.
Rossetti. Mr. John Murray for that of the late Lord Bowen. Messrs. G. Bell & Sons for that of the late Adelaide
If I have forgotten any one, I make my apologies d'avance.