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sixty of the minor poets—a larger number than have been admitted into the other volumes of the series, but not larger in proportion to the full choir. Again, the question of texts has offered peculiar difficulties in many instances, where it is impossible to say what was the latest text approved by the author, if indeed he approved of any. In such cases, what seems intrinsically the best text has been adopted, or some standard text of acknowledged excellence has been followed. In regard to spelling, the temptation was even stronger than in Vol. III to reproduce the original editions without change; but such procedure might fairly be deemed pedantic in a book designed for immature students and the general reader, and would certainly prove to be of more inconvenience than benefit. The original spelling of Spenser, however, has been retained, since it was deliberately adopted by him as a part of the romantic archaism of his poetry; and for a like reason certain spellings are word-forms which were preferred by Milton have been kept. ::

I wisho 10 disclaimer of originality in the notes, and at the same time to repeat that even the best editions.

haver:not: been followed blindly, that statements, references, anel: Glutätions have been verified whenever possible, and that some of the material is new or is brought tiether for the first time. I also acknowledge gratefully ny obligations to the authorities of the Harvard College Library, of the Library of Heidelberg University, and of the Bodleian Library, for access to early editions and other valuable works; to Professor R. E. Neil Dodge and to Houghton, Mifflin & Co. for their courtesy in allowing me to use the text of the Cambridge Spenser; to Mr. Bertram Dobell for permission to print two of Traherne's poems; and to Mr. Earl N. Manchester, of the Brown University Library, for careful transcripts of variant readings in Milton. As in the volumes previously published, my wife


has given constant and invaluable assistance by preparing copy, collating texts, reading proof, and translating from the Greek and Latin; the table of contents, the indices, and the glossary to Spenser were also made by her.

W. C. B.
April 28, 1909

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