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E D M UND SPENSER.
TEXT CAREFULLY REVISED, AND ILLUSTRATED WITH
NOTES, ORIGINAL AND SELECTED,
FRANCIS J. CHILD.
LITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY.
PHIXXEY, BLAKEMAN, AND MASON,
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1855, by
LITTLE, BROWN, AND COMPANY, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massa
A NEW impression of these volumes having, during my absence from the country, advanced more than half-way to completion, I am prevented for the present, from noticing as they deserve, two papers which have been recently put forth on subjects connected with Spenser's biography. The one of these was contributed by Mr. Keightley to “Fraser's Magazine,” and, contrary to the custom of that author, adds very little to what was previously known. The other article, which appeared in the “ Atlantic Monthly” for November, 1858 (and which, therefore, is immediately accessible to all who feel an interest in the matter), is worthy of special attention. It discusses two of the most curious, if not the most important, questions in the life of Spen
the name and history of his youthful mistress, the enigmatical Rosalind, and of his wife. The discussion of the first of these points has hitherto resulted only in an exposure of the extreme folly of those writers who have attempted it; but, unless I am greatly deceived, the article now spoken of has
most ingeniously resolved the puzzle, and has satisfactorily shown that Rosalind was Rose, sister of Samuel Daniel, the poet,
that the rival whom she preferred to Colin Clout was John Florio, Resolute;" and also that the wife whom Spenser took in his maturer years, was Elizabeth Nagle, a member of a family with which it was already known, that Sylvanus Spenser, the poet's eldest son, formed a marriage connection.
Such changes in the Notes as were required by these discoveries (for so I do not hesitate to call them) have been made in the fourth and fifth volumes, where alone changes were necessary.
F. J. C. December, 1859.
THESE volumes were at first intended to be little more than a reprint of the deservedly popular edition of Spenser, published in 1839, under the superir tendence of Mr. George Hillard. But the necessity of reducing the annotations to a more compact form, and the hope of making some improvements, led to alterations, and these, becoming more extensive as the work progressed, were thought at last to be so considerable as to constitute it a new edition. It will be perceived, however, that a very large portion of Mr. Hillard's notes have been retained.
The kindness of various friends having permitted the use of old copies of nearly all the poems, a scrupulous revision has been made of the text, which, though originally printed with ordinary care, and, on the whole, faithfully reproduced by Todd, required correction in some places. The glossary has been entirely reconstructed, and pains have been taken to make the definitions at once philologically accurate and conformable with the actual usage. The Life of the Poet prefixed to this volume is believed to be