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ELIZABETH TO VICTORIA
CHOSEN AND ARRANGED
JAMES M. GARNETT, M.A., LL.D.,
Professor of THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
PUBLISHED BY GINN & COMPANY.
A PREFACE may be expected to give the raison d'être of a book, especially of a book of selections, when one might think the mak ing of books of selections overdone. But, in the words of Leigh Hunt (Preface to Imagination and Fancy), "The Editor has often wished for such a book himself; and as nobody will make it for him, he has made it for others," and for himself, I would add.
I have long wished to use with my class in English Literature Professor Minto's Manual of English Prose Literature, but I thought it useless for students to study the lives of authors and detailed criticism of their style without having in hand examples of their writings of sufficient length to enable the student to form some idea of the justness of the criticism. It is true that we have two recent books of prose selections: Saintsbury's Specimens of English Prose Style from Malory to Macaulay, and Galton's English Prose from Maundeville to Thackeray, but neither of them suited my purpose. Mr. Saintsbury's book contains too many authors and too brief specimens of their style. A book containing ninety-six authors, with specimens varying from two to six pages, would not fulfil the object I had in view. But Mr. Saintsbury has prefixed to his volume an excellent essay on English Prose Style, which should be reprinted in pamphlet form for use with any book of selections. Mr. Galton's book is not liable to the above objection to the same extent, as it con