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wane for the last year. It is easy to suggest a variety of causes for this; but some of them it would be difficult to hint at, without an infringement of delicacy. The promoters and leaders of this pursuit are a very small circle; and, as in greater States, Time serves but to bring into action the seeds of intrigue, jealousy, and division. A collector is not always a lover of literature for its own sake; and though it may gratify him to fan in some degree the first flame, it is not always desirable to see too broad a light thrown on the arcana!
The present Editor has worked for no selfish ends: he has laboured for no collector; he has written to feed the vanity of no individual! His has been the honest ambition, not of engrossing, but of communicating, that of which, when he desired to know it, he himself had found a difficulty in attaining the knowledge! It cost Capel, Steevens, Malone, Reed, and Farmer, a long life to arrive at this kind of knowledge it gave the principal value to all their commentaries on Shakespeare: and then at last how much of it died with them! A catalogue of Mr. Heber's stupendous library, with a few notes from his capacious and unequalled mind, might do all that is wanted. But when will he have leisure for it?
Or is it to be expected that any thing so exquisite, so brilliant, and so unrivalled, should be laid open in broad glare to the unhallowed gaze of the multitude?
The necessity of proving the uses of Bibliography is past. Those uses in the pursuit of solid as well as curious information have been fully explained, and are acknowledged. Numerous as are the sneers which the Editor has encountered in this study, they have fallen blunted on his irritable mind. He will not repent of the time that he has given to the older writers of his native tongue; nor of the expense as well as the fatigue that he has incurred in reviving many of them from the utter oblivion with which the lapse of ages had covered them.* Among these are
On July 17, 1816, he has, in this spirit, ushered from the press of the Bensleys the three following curious little pieces:
1. Nympha Libethris: or, the Cotswold Muse. By Clement Barksdale, of Sudeley, in Gloucestershire, Chaplain to George Lord Chandos. First printed 1651. 12mo. only 40 copies.
2. Occasional Poems, by William Hammond, of St. Albans Court, in East Kent. First printed 1655. small 4to. only 61 copies.
the rare poems of Clement Barksdale, William Hammond, George Wither, Thomas Stanley, and John Hall of Durham *-in addition to the Paradise of Dainty Devises, and England's Helicon: and of prose-writers, several pieces of Robert Greene, Gabriel Harvey, Thomas Nash, Robert Southwell, Nicholas Breton, and Richard Brathwayte.+ Nor are these all: the Editor's private Press at Lee Priory has furnished many more; such as, Davison's Rhapsody; W. Browne's Poems (never before published ;) N. Breton's Longing, and his Melancholic Humours; Sir Walter Raleigh's Poems; Drayton's Nymphidia Duchess of Newcastle's Poems; Brathwayte's Poems; Excerpta Tudoriana, (a collection of Elizabethan
3. George Wither's Hymns and Songs of the Church; with a Preface by the Editor. First printed 1623. small 8vo. 100 copies.
These may at present be all had of Messrs. Longman, or Mr. Triphook; but not more than 16 of Barksdale's book are for sale, and not more than 30 of Hammond.
Poems by John Hall, of Durham. do. Longman.
† All contained in the two volumes of Archaica, 4to.
poems): and in prose, Greene's Groatsworth of Wit; Lord Brook's Life of Sydney, &c. These form almost a little library of themselves; nor were any of them (except Drayton), easily accessible, till the Editor reprinted them.* The very few copies taken of all these works will make them shortly almost as rare as the originals.
If every hour of our lives could be employed in the most solid and beneficial, or most sublime occupations, a strong argument might be urged against wasting our intellectual attention on that, which is comparatively trifling or unimportant. But Providence has ordered it otherwise. There are innu
* Mr.Park's Heliconia, in three 4to. vols, containing all the early poetical miscellanies except those already mentioned and except Tottell's Miscellany, (consisting of Lord Surrey's Poems, with Sir Thomas Wyatt's, and some anonymous, which are now about to appear under the learned editorship of Dr. Nott), together with Mr. Haslewood's laborious and ́exact edition of the Mirror for Magistrates, 3 vols. 4to.-his Puttenham, Webbe, and other tracts of poetical criticism-and his Painter's Palace of Pleasure, add materially to this revival of our Elizabethan literature; to which the Roxburgh reprints will in a short time furnish a splen, did appendage.
merable varying duties, and innumerable varying pleasures, by which it is decreed that the hours of business and of relaxation of the different characters and stations of mankind shall be filled. Every one who discharges the lot assigned to him innocently and virtuously, deserves praise, and will finally at
The Editor has borne the charge of dulness in his pursuits, and sacrifice of time in his amusements, with a calm contempt, from the proud consciousness that the accusation of petty and confined studies does not belong to him. If there be one merit above all others, without which he thinks excellence cannot be attained in literary composition, it is animation and feeling. In many ancient productions these must be admitted to be wanting. But the mere modern reader, ignorant of the changes of language and accentuation, must not always assume that old writings are wanting in spirit, because they are without the fashionable point of his own day.
Narrowness of mind marks him who has limited. his attention to a few objects; and thus, for want of comparison, magnifies them into an undue and fancied importance. To him, whom so many lite