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Tbe world's Classics

Pott 8vo, cloth, 18. net. Leather, gilt, 28. net. (All volumes, with the exception of Works of Fiction, can be obtained bound in buckram, paper label, gilt top, 18. 6d. net, also in parchment, gilt back, side, top, and silk marker, in case, 28. 6d. net each.) 1. Charlotte Brontë's Jane 25. Hazlitt's Winterslow.

Eyre. Second Impression. 26. Hawthorne's Scarlet 2. Lamb's Essays of Elia.

Letter,
Third Impression.

27. Macaulay's Lays of 3. Tennyson's Poems. 1830

Ancient Rome. 1858. Third Impression. 28. Thackeray's Henry Es4. Goldsmith's Vicar of

mond. Wakefield. Second Im

29. Scott's Ivanhoe, pression.

30. Emerson's English Traits. 5. Hazlitt's Table Talk.

31. George Eliot's Mill on Second Impression.

the Floss. 6. Emerson's Essays. Third

32. Selected English Essays. Impression.

Chosen and arranged by W. 7. Keats' Poems. Second Im

PEACOCK pression.

33. Hume's Essays. 8. Dickens' Oliver Twist.

34. Burns' Poems. 9. The Ingoldsby. Legends. Second Impression.

35. Gibbon's Roman Empire.

Vol. I. Complete in 7 'Vols. 10. Emily Brontë's Wuther

36. Pope's Odyssey of Homer. ing Heights. Second Impression.

37. Dryden's Virgil. 11. Darwin's Origin of Spe

38. Dickens' Tale of Two cies. Second Impression.

Cities. 12. Bunyan's Pilgrim's Pro

39. Longfellow's Poems.

Vol. 1. Complete in 3 Vols. gress. Second Impression.

40. Sterne's Tristram
13. English Songs and Bal-
lads. Compiled by T. W.

Shandy.
H. CROSLAND. Second Im-

41. Buckle's History of Civili. pression.

zation. Vol. I. Complete

in 3 Vols, 14. Charlotte Brontë's Shirley. Second Impres

42. Chaucer's Works. Vol. I. sion.

From the text of Prof.

SKEAT. 15. Hazlitt's Sketches and

(By permission of Essays. Second Impres

the Oxford University Press.) sion.

Complete in 3 Vols.

43. The Prince. 16. Herrick's Poems.

By NICCOLÒ

MACHIAVELLI. Translated 17. Defoe's Robinson Crusoe.

by LUIGI Riccr. 18. Pope's Iliad of Homer.

44. Gibbon's Roman Empire. Second impression.

Vol. II. 19. Carlyle's Sartor Re- 45. English Prose. Chosen and

sartus. Second Impression. arranged by W. Peacock. 20. Swift's Gulliver's Travels. 46. Tolstoy's Essays and 21. Poe's Tales of Mystery

Letters, and Imagination.

47. Charlotte Brontë's VilSecond Impression.

lette, 22. White's History of Sel- 48. Buckle's History of Civiborne.

lization, Vol.

II. 23. De Quincey's Opium Eater. 49. Of the Imitation of Christ. 24. Bacon's Essays.

THOMAS À KEMPIS.

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PRINTED BY WILLIAM CLOWES AND SONS, LIMITED,

LONDON AND BECCLES.

PREFACE

lo-61.9

The object of the present volume of selections is to illustrate the development of English prose. Like the preceding volume of Selected English Essays' in the same series, the book is intended mainly for the use of

young students, though it is hoped that it will appeal 2 also to the general reader.

The fourteenth century, the age of Chaucer, and of Mandeville and Wycliffe, suggested itself as the starting point; the works produced during that period marking the settlement of the language in the form which, with few differences, and those chiefly, of spelling and vocabulary, is that of the present day. Difficulties of copyright and considerations of space, added to the invidiousness of making selections from the more recent authors, have prevented the work from being carried much beyond the first half of the nineteenth century:

In making the selections, there has been no attempt to observe any common standard of length. I have been guided rather

by the desire to present such specimens as should be both complete and interesting in themselves, and such as should, at the same time, be characteristic of the style of the various writers represented. The spelling, where necessary in the case of the earlier extracts, has been modernised. The few explanatory notes that have been added relate almost exclusively to words which are now entirely obsolete or not in general use.

161771

My thanks are due to the literary executors of the late Mr. Ruskin for their courtesy in allowing me to include the extract from 'Sesame and Lilies, and to Mr. George Allen for kindly confirming their permission. I have also to thank Miss Maud Brougham for generous assistance in the preparation of the work.

W. P.

52, BRONDESBURY VILLAS, N.W.

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