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JOHN MILTON:

EDITED,

WITH INTRODUCTIONS, NOTES,.
AND AN ESSAY ON MILTON'S ENGLISH,

BY

DAVID MASSON, M.A., LL.D.,

PROFESSOR OF RHETORIC AND ENGLISH LITERATURE
IN THE UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH.

VOLUME I.

London:

MACMILLAN AND CO.

1874.

[All Rights reserved.]

Gift of
W.W.CORCORAN,

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PREFACE.

IN taking leave of these volumes, the preparation of which has extended over not a few years, I may be permitted a word or two regarding the several portions of their contents.

The TEXT of the Poems has been prepared, with the utmost study of accuracy, from the original and other authoritative editions. Accounts of these, and of the surviving manuscripts of some of the Poems, with other relative bibliographical information, are given in the INTRODUCTIONS; where also the endeavour has been to elucidate, as fully and exactly as possible, and with the due amount of accompanying criticism, the circumstances, motives, and intention, of each of the Poems individually. If read in their chronological order, indeed, these Introductions will be found to constitute, after their fashion, a continuous, and rather minute, Literary Biography of the Poet. The NOTES are partly expository, partly philological, and partly critical; and the principles on which they have been prepared, and the amount of use made in them of the Notes of previous Editors, are explained at pp. 101-106, p. 281, and pp. 341, 342, of Volume III. In the prefixed GENERAL ESSAY ON MILTON'S ENGLISH what may be called the Philology of the Poems is presented, for

VOL. I.

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