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discover in the few, upon the whole body; and if the Contributors happen to be the same in one or two instances, to declare them to be identical in all.
If the pages of one work of this class include the names of numerous popular writers, some of whom may chance to have written unsuccessfully in another, their contributions to all similar books are sweepingły denounced, as unworthy of their fame. Should an editor however, regardless of the factitious value of a name, profit by the example of periodicals of more frequent recurrence, to publish that which may best accord with his own notions of what is eligible, without reference to the literary rank of the author, his industry or liberality is immediately impugned for not procuring the co-operation of more popular pens. It is true, that such critics are not numerous; but if common fairness be a requisite with the philologists of these enlightened days, the fewer there are of them the better. It is worthy of remark, that several of the Cynics, who affect to regard so lightly the literature of annual volumes, are but too happy to publish, from time to time, in the periodicals over which they preside, the rejected articles of such miscellanies. The Editor can speak, at all events, from his own experience in such matters. Why that which is good on one sheet of paper should be bad upon another, it is difficult to conceive; yet, that such is sometimes the case, will be inferred from the fact, that two influential periodical writers, who spoke with contempt of a prose sketch in the Literary Souvenir for 1829, from the pen of Mrs. Charles Gore, subsequently discovered, that (under another name, and in the collected works of the author,) it was one of her happiest efforts, and possessed every claim to popular favour! It is well for the interests of literature, that the “balance of power” will generally be found to be in the hands of more liberal critics.
The literature of the following pages has been selected with care, and will not, it is hoped, be found inferior to that of any periodical work. Whatever may be its defects, they must be imputed rather to the obliquity of the Editor's taste, than to the scantiness or poverty of his materials, as his difficulty has been principally that of selection.
58, Torrington Square,
Oct. 1st, 1830.
• ADVERTISEMENT .
The Glen of Gangoole. By Sir Aubrey de Vere, Bart.