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ROBERT CHAMBERS,
EDITOR OF TOB " EDINBURGH JOURNAL," "INFORMATION FOR THE PEOPLE," BTC. ETO.

IN TWO VOLUMES:

VOL. I.

BOSTON:

PUBLISHED BY GOULD, KENDALL AND LINCOLN,

NO. 59 WASHINGTON STREET.

1847.

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PREFACE.

This work originated in a desire, on the part of the Publishers, to supply what they considered a deficiency in the Literature addressed at the present time to the great body of the People. In the late efforts for the improvement of the popular mind, the removal of mere ignorance has been the chief object held in view: attention has been mainly given to what might be expected to impart technical knowledge; and in the cultivation of what is certainly but a branch of the intellectual powers, it has been thought that the great end was gained. It is not necessary here to present arguments establishing that there are faculties for cognising the beautiful in art, thought, and feeling, as well as for perceiving and enjoying the truths of physical science and of fact. Nor is it needful to show how elegant and reflective literature, especially, tends to moralise, to soften, and to adorn the soul and life of man. Assuming this as granted, we were anxious to take the aid of the press--or rather of the Printing Machine, for by it alone could the object be accomplished-to bring the belles lettres into the list of those agencies which are now operating for the mental advancement of the middle and humbler portions of society.

It appeared that, for a first effort, nothing could be more suitable than a systematised series of extracts from our national authors ; "a concentration"—to quote the language of the prospectus" of the best productions of English intellect, from Anglo-Saxon to the present times, in the various departments headed by Chaucer, Shakspeare, Milton-by More, Bacon, Locke-by Hooker, Taylor, Barrowby Addison, Johnson, Goldsmith-by Hume, Robertson, Gibbon-set in a biographical and critical history of the literature itself.” By this a double end might, it seemed, be served; as the idea of the work in. cluded the embodiment of a distinct and valuable portion of knowledge, as well as that mass of polite literature which was looked to for the effect above described. In the knowledge of what has been done by English literary genius in all ages, it cannot be doubted that we have a branch of the national history, not only in itself important, as well as interesting, but which reflects a light upon other departments of history-for is not the Elizabethan Drama, for example, an exponent, to some extent, of the state of the national mind at the time, and is it not equally one of the influences which may be presumed to have modified that mind in the age which followed ? Nor is it to be overlooked, how important an end is to be attained by training the entire people to venerate the thoughtful and eloquent of past and present times. These gifted beings may be said to have endeared our language and institutions-our national character, and the very scenery and artificial objects which mark our soil—to all who are acquainted with, and can appreciate their writings. A regard for our national authors enters into and forms part of the most sacred feelings of every educated man, and it would not be easy to estimate in what degree it is to this sentiment that we are indebted for all of good and great that centres in the name of Eng. land. Assuredly, in our common reverence for a Shakspeare, a Milton, a Scott, we have a social and uniting sentiment, which not only contains in itself part of our happiness as a people, but much that counteracts influences that tend to set us in division.

A more special utility is contemplated for this work, in its serving to introduce the young to the Pantheon of English authors. The “ Elegant Extracts” of Dr Knox, after dorg enjoying popularity as a selection of polite literature for youths between school and college,"baş of tate-years súrk out of-notice, in consequence of a change in public taste. It was almost exclusively devoted to the rhetorical literature, Elegant but artificial, which flourished during the earlier half of the eight çerdh century, overlooking even the great names of Chaucer and Spenser, as well as nearly the whole dange-of-rich, though not faultless productions extending between the times of Shakspeare and Dryden., The riore seemed to have come for a substitute work, in which at once the revived taste for our early litterature slioułu bé ğrašified, and due attention be given to the authors who have lived since the time of Knox. Such a work it has been the humble aim of the editor to produce in that which is now laid before the public.

He takes this opportunity of acknowledging that very important assistance has been rendered throughout the Cyclopædia of English Literature, and particularly in the poetical department, by Mr Robert Carruthers of Inverness.

EDINBURGH, August 15, 1843.

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.

.

Page
Page

Page Illumination-Monk writing, 1 Autograph of Sir Philip Sidney,

434

232 View of St Lawrence Church, Chair of Bede, 3 Portrait of Richard looker,

441 235 Portrait of Dr Robert South, 8 Portrait of Lord Bacon, Illumination-a Minstrel,

441

239 View of Islip Church, Portrait of Chaucer, 12 Autograph of Bacon,

454 239 Portrait of Richard Baxter, 14

241

Monument of Bacon, Chaucer's Tomb,

461

View of Ury House, Tabard Inn, Southwark, 14 Portrait of Sir Walter Raleigh,

466

244 Portrait of John Bunyan, Portrait of Gower, 24 Autograph of Raleigh,

467 244 View of the Birthplace of Bunyan, 25 Cathedral of Aberdeen, View of Hayes Farm, the Birth place

475

Portrait of Lord Clarendon, View of Lochleven, 28 of Raleigh,

244 View of Dunkirk Ilouse, the London 35 Portrait of Wickliffe, Stow's Monument in the church of

476

residence of Lord Clarendon, 35

249 Portrait of Gilbert Burnet,

St Andrew under Shaft, London, Chair of Wickliffe,

486 Portrait of James Howell,

255 Portrait of Sir William Temple, 501 Illumination-Early Printing-Office, 36 Portrait of James I. of Scotland, 36 | Autograph of Howell,

508 256 Portrait of John Locke, 44 View of Dunkeld Cathedral, Portrait of William Camden,

508

202 Autograph of Locke, Portrait of Howard, Earl of Surrey, 46 | Autograph of Camden,

509 262 View of the Birthplace of Locke, 49 Portrait of Sir David Lyndsay, Portrait of Thomas May,

510 264 Seal of Locke, 55 Portrait of William Caxton,

Portrait of Thomas Hobbes,

266 Portrait of the Ilonourable Robert 69

272

Portrait of Robert Burton, Portrait of Sir Thomas More,

Boyle,

516 59 Tomb of Burton, Autograph of Sir Thomas More,

521 274 Portrait of Sir Isaac Newton, 69 Bust of John Leland, Portrait of John Selden,

521

282 View of the Birth place of Newton, Portrait of William Tyndale, 73 Autograph of Selden, 282 Portrait of Thomas Rymer,

527 Portrait of Sir John Cheke, 74 View of the House of Selden,

530 283 Portrait of Sir George Mackenzie,

285 76 Portrait of Archbishop Usher,

Monument of Sir George Mackenzie, Autograph of Roger Ascham,

Portrait of William Chillingworth, 285 Illumination-Spenser introduced

Greyfriars Church yard, Edinburgh, 539 by Sydney to Elizabeth, 79 Portrait of Jeremy Taylor,

290 | Illumination-Rape of the Lock, 80 Portrait of Sir Thomas Browne, Portrait of Thomas Sackville,

535 298 | Portrait of Matthew Prior, 86 Portrait of Edmund Spenser, Portrait of John Knox,

5:35 303 Autograph of Prior, 87

303 View of the Birthplace of Knox,

Portrait of Joseph Addison, View of Kilcolinan Castle,

540 99 Portrait of Michael Drayton,

540 Portrait of Archbishop Spottiswood, 306 Autograph of Addison,

104 Portrait of Sir Henry Wotton, Illumination-Milton Dictating to

View of Addison's Walk, Magdalen 110

312

his Daughter, Monumental Effigy of Dr Donne,

541

College, Oxford, 114

312 Portrait of Abraham Cowley,

View of Holland House, View of Peashurst,

542 312 116 | Autograph of Cowley, View of Norwich Cathedral,

545

Portrait of Jonathan Swift, 119

313

View of the Ilouse of Cowley, • Portrait of Francis Beaumont,

545

Autograph of Swift, 131 Portrait of George Herbert,

View of the Tomb of Swift in DubView of the Poets' Corner, West

139 Bust of Robert Herrick,

minster Abbey,
323

547 lin Cathedral,

325 139 Portrait of Edmund Waller, Autograph of Robert llerrick,

554

Portrait of Alexander Pope,
View of Waller's Tomb,
View of the Birth place of Randolph, 145

326

554

Autograph of Pope, Portrait of Sir William Davenant, 146 Portrait of John Milton,

328 View of Pope's Villa, Twickenham, 553 View of Lethington Castle, 155 View of Ludlow Castle, 329 Portrait of Jolin Gay,

570 View of Logie Kirk, 156 View of Milton's Cottage at Chal- Autograph of Gay,

570 View of Falkland Palace, 157 font, 330 Portrait of Thomas Parnell,

576 Fac-simile of Milton's Second ReView of the llouse of the Earl of

580

Autograph of Somerville, 158 Stirling,

330 ceipt to Simmons,

Urn erected by Shenstone to SomerView of the Remains of Milton's Portrait of Drummond of Haw

ville,

581 158 Ilouse at Forest Ilill,

335 thornden ::::

Portrait of Allan Ramsay, View of llanthonden; the seatof. Hordait of Andrew Marvell,

582

343 Autograph of Ramsay, Drummond, 1591 Portrait of Samuel Butler, 345 View of Ramsay Lodge,

583 Portrait of Buchanaa,161 | View of Rose Street, London, in

590

Portrait of Nicholas Rowe, Autograph of Buchagan, 1610 which Butler died,

346 Autograph and Seal of Vanbrugh, 597 View of Gray's Ini llall; 16+ Portrait of John Dryden,

300 Mlumination--Steele Writing the View of Globe Thentio, 165 Autograph of John Dryden, 360 Tatler in a Coffee-Room,

602 Bust of Shakspeare, 576 View of Burleigh House, 361 Portrait of Sir Richard Steele,

602 Autograph of Shakspěxtre, 376 Portrait of Thomas Otway,

386 View of Steele's llouse at LlanView of the Birthplace of Shak. Illumination-Preacher of the Se

gunnor,

605 177 speare, venteenth Century,

617

396 Portrait of Daniel Defoe, View of Charlecote House, 178 Portrait of Algernon Sidney,

405 View of Stanton Harcourt, Oxford. Goblet from the Boar's - Head

Portrait of Lady Rachel Russell, 407 shire, Tavern, 190 Portrait of Thomas Fuller,

411 | Autograph of Lord Boling broke, 646 Portrait of Ben Jonson,

191 View of Old St Bride's Church, 412 Boling broke's Monument in BatterAutograph of Ben Jonson, 191 Portrait of Izaak Walton,

415
sea Church,

647 View of Falcon Tavern, 193 View of Walton's Ilouse,

415 Portrait of Lady Mary Wortley Portrait of Fletcher, 203 Portrait of John Evelyn, 419 Montagu,

650 Portrait of Philip Massinger, 217 View of the llouse of Evelyn,

420 Portrait of the Earl of Shaftesbury, 656 Illumination-Raleigh writing in Portrait of Sir Roger L'Estrange, 423 View of Bentley's Seat, in Trinity Prison, 232 Portrait of Dr Isaac Barrow, 428 College Chapel,

680 Portrait of Sir Philip Sidney, 232 Portrait of Archbishop Tillotson, 434 Portrait of Charles Leslie,

667

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CONTENTS OF FIRST VOLUME.

First Períod.

Second Period.

FROM THE EARLIEST TIMES TO 1400.

FROM 1400 TO 1558.

Page

POETS.

AYOLO-SAXON WRITERS,

1

3

Page

INTRODUCTION OF NORMAN FRENCH,

36

The SONSAN POETS OF ENGLAND,

4 KING JAMES I. OF SCOTLAND,

4

COUNENCENENT OF THE PRESENT FORM OF ENGLISH,

James I, a Prisoner in Windsor, first sees Lady Jane

37

Beaufort, who afterwards was his Queen,

SPECIMENS OF ANGLO-SAXON and English Previous

5

TO 1300,

Join LYDGATE,

Extract from the Saxon Chronicle, 1154,

5 Description of a Sylvan Retreat,

Extract from the account of the Proceedings at Arthur's The London Lyckpenny,

38

Coronation, given by Layamon, in his translation of Robert DENRYSON,

5

Wace, executed about 1190),

Dinner given by the Town Mouse to the Country Mouse, 38

39

Extract from a Charter of Henry III., A. D. 1258, in the From the Moral,

6

39

The Garment of Good Ladies,

common language of the time,

40

TEE RAYNING CHRONICLERS,

6 WILLIAM DUN BAR,

41

6

The Moster for the First Crusade,

The Merle and Nightingale,

42

7

The Siege of Antioch,

The Dance,

43

The Interview of Vortigern with Rowen, the beautiful Tidings fra the Session,

43

8

Daughter of lengist,

Of Discretion in Giving and Taking,

8

44

Fabulous account of the first Ilighways in England,

GAVIN DOUGLAS,

44

8

Praise of Good Women,

Apostrophe to Honour,

44

ExGLISH METRICAL ROMANCES,

8 Morning in May,

45

9

Extract from the King of Tars,

JOHN SKELTON,

45

10

Extract from the Squire of Low Degree,

To Mistress Margaret Hussey,

46

11

IMMEDIATE PREDECESSORS OF CHAUCER,

EARL OF SURREY,

11

What is in Ileaven,

Prisoner in Windsor, he recounteth his Pleasure there

46

11

ROBERT LANGLAND,

passed,

47

11

Extracts from Pierce Plowman,

Description and Praise of his Love Geraldine,

12

GEOFFREY CHAUCER,

How no age is content with his own estate, and how the

15

Select Characters from the Canterbury Pilgrimage,

age of children is the happiest, if they had skill to un-

47

18 derstand it,

Description of a Poor Country Widow,

The Death of Arcite,

18

The Means to attain Happy Life,

47

Departure of Custance,

19 SIR THOMAS WYATT,

19

The Pardoner's Tale,

The Lover's lute cannot be blamed, though it sing of his

47

The Good Parson,

Lady's unkindness,

22

An Ironical Ballad on the Duplicity of Women,

The re-cured Lover exulteth in his Freedom, and voweth

48

23

Last Verses of Chaucer, written on his Deathbed,

to remain free until Death,

48

23

Johx Gower,

That Pleasure is mixed with every Pain,

48

24

Episode of Rosiphele,

The Courtier's Life,

48

25

The Envious Man and the Miser,

Of the Mean and Sure Estate,

48

JOH BABLOUR,

25 THOMAS TUSSER,

48

26

A pastrophe to Freedom,

Directions for Cultivating a Hop-Garden,

49

26

Death of Sir Tienry De Bohun,

Housewifely Physic,

49

26 Moral Reflections on the Wind,

The Battle of Bannockburn,

49

ASDREW WYNTOUX,

28 SIR DAVID LYNDSAY,

50

28

St Sert's Ram,

A Carman's Account of a Law-suit,

50

28

Interview of St Sert with Sathanas,

Supplication in Contemption of Side Tails,

23

Tbe Return of King David II. from Captivity,

The Building of the Tower of Babel, and Confusion of

50

29

BLIND HARRY,

Tongues,

51

29
Adventure of Wallace while fishing in Irvine Water,

MISCELLANEOUS PIECES OF THE SECOND PERIOD,

51
30
Escape of Wallace from Perth,

A Praise of his (the Poet'sı Lady,

31

The Death of Wallace,

Amantium Iræ Amoris Redintegratio est. By Richard

52

Edwards. 1523-1566,

51

PROSE WRITERS OF THE FOURTEENTH CENTURY.

Characteristic of an Englishman. By Andrew Bourd

52

32 The Nut-Brown Maid,

SIR JORX MANDRVILLE,

32

A Mohamedan's Lecture on Christian Vices,

PROSE WRITERS

33

The Devil's Head in the Valley Perilous,

54

GEOFFREY CHAUCER,

34 SIR JOHN FORTESCUE,

54

34

Om Riches,

English Courage,

35

Joss WICKLIFFE,

What harın would come to England if the Commons

54

The Magnificat,

36 thereof were Poor,

vii

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