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placed at my disposal his Caryll correspondence, which he had carefully annotated, and the explanation of all its obscure allusions are due to him. He supplied me with a multitude of letters which were widely scattered through books and periodicals, and collated others with the originals in the British Museum and Bodleian Library. Large masses of the letters are undated, or dated falsely, and he was at the labour of fixing dates which sometimes appeared to defy conjecture. He lent me his rare editions, was unwearied in answering questions, in solving difficulties, in revising proofs, and in communicating, without reserve, his stores of information. He was then suffering from a long and painful illness, and he died when only the first volume of correspondence was printed, or I should have had his generous and invaluable aid to the end.

Mr. Bowles remarked in the course of the skirmish of pamphlets he provoked, that the editorship of Pope's works had been to no one a bed of roses. For the larger part of the discomforts his commentators may have endured, Pope himself was responsible. His mysteries, his double-dealings, his falsifications, and his quarrels have rendered half the acts of his life a fertile theme for debate. None of the angry controversialists who mingled fifty years ago in the fray had prepared properly for the contest, and the insolence and assumption, the virulence and the dogmatism, were commonly greatest with the persons whose acquaintance with the subject was the least. The intemperate, and usually ignorant warfare, left nearly all the vexed questions in confusion, and it is only in recent years that a new generation of dispassionate students have begun to replace the blunders of sciolism by facts. In the many battles yet to be fought over Pope there will be this advantage which will be certain to produce solid results, that the critic will be in possession of the materials for judgment, and will not have to write without knowledge of his cause.

THE

AUTHOR'S PREFACE.

VOL. I.--J'OETRY.

THE clearness, the closeness, and the elegance of style with which this preface is written, render it one of the best pieces of prose in our language. It abounds in strong good sense, and profound knowledge of life. It is written with such simplicity that scarcely a single metaphor is to be found in it.-WARTON.

This preface first appeared in the Works of Pope, 4to, 1717. The poet submitted the manuscript to Atterbury, and the bishop thus replied in December, 1716: "I return the preface, which I have read twice with pleasure. The modesty and good sense there is in it, must please every one that reads it. And since there is, as I said, nothing that can offend, I see not why you should balance a moment about printing it, always provided that there is nothing said there which you have occasion to unsay hereafter, of which you yourself are the best, and the only judge. This is my sincere opinion, which I give, because you ask it, and which I would not give, though asked, but to a man I value as much as I do you, being sensible how improper it is, on many accounts, for me to interpose in things of this nature, which I never understood well, and now understand somewhat less than ever I did." The suspicion which Atterbury hinted to his friend, that some of the sentiments expressed in the preface might hereafter be quoted against him, probably referred to the vaunts in the concluding paragraphs. The poet paid no regard to the warning, and lived to violate nearly all his professions. Johnson says that the preface is "written with great sprightliness and elegance," but the prai e of Warton is hyperbolical when he terms it "one of the best pieces of prose in our language." The style is often faulty, and never rises to any extraordinary pitch of excellence; the "knowledge of life," which Warton calls "profound," is such as a little experience would supply; and the "strong good sense " is interspersed with obvious thoughts and erroneous maxims. The language of Atterbury is sober, and even in writing to the author he was not betrayed by the partiality of friendship into the exaggerations of Warton.

THE

AUTHOR'S PREFACE.

I AM inclined to think that both the writers of books, and the readers of them, are generally not a little unreasonable in their expectations. The first seem to fancy that the world must approve whatever they produce, and the latter to imagine that authors are obliged to please them at any rate. Methinks, as on the one hand, no single man is born with a right of controlling the opinions of all the rest; so on the other, the world has no title to demand, that the whole care and time of any particular person should be sacrificed to its entertainment. Therefore I cannot but believe that writers and readers are under equal obligations for as much fame, or pleasure, as each affords the other.

Every one acknowledges, it would be a wild notion to expect perfection in any work of man: and yet one would think the contrary was taken for granted, by the judgment commonly passed upon poems. A critic supposes he has done his part if he proves a writer to have failed in an expression, or erred in any particular point: and can it then be wondered at if the poets in general seem resolved not to own themselves in any error? For as long as one side will make no allowances, the other will be brought to no acknowledgments.'

1 In all editions till that of Warburton it was thus: "For as long as one side despises a well meant endeavour, the other will not be satisfied with a moderate approbation."

The first sentence of the next paragraph is expanded in the manuscript: "Indeed they both proceed in such a manner as if they really believed that poetry was immediate inspiration. It

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