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FOR THE USE OF
CANDIDATES FOR EXAMINATIONS, PUBLIC SCHOOLS, AND
EDITOR OF THE CIVIL SERVICE HISTORY OF ENGLAND AND
ASSISTANT-EDITOR OF THE CIVIL SERVICE GEOGRAPHY.'
MORE THAN THREE YEARS have elapsed since this little Handbook (the scheme of which is fully set forth in the Introduction on page 1) was first projected and announced. In the interval several works similar in subject have appeared, with one or two of which, in point of authority and extent, it could scarcely court comparison. But the field is, nevertheless, a wide one. The present volume had when planned, and has still, its independent purpose, and that it may serve that purpose adequately the Author earnestly desires. .
As much with a view to indicate sources of information to the student as upon conscientious grounds, the titles of the works made use of are almost always minutely specified in the foot-notes. But, in addition, the Author desires here to express his obligations generally to Professor Morley’s ‘English Writers, and the 'Histoire de la Littérature Anglaise' of M. Taine; to Professor Craik’s ‘History of the English Language and Literature’; to the 'Essays' of Lord Macaulay and of Messrs. Masson, Forster, and Brimley; to Mr. Arber's excellent · English Reprints'; to the “Westminster,' “Quarterly,' and · Edinburgh Reviews'; to the Globe Series,' the Clarendon Press Series,' Chambers's "Cyclopædia of English Literature, and Allibone's comprehensive · Dictionary.'
The Author trusts that in the foregoing cases,—and indeed in every case,—he has done his authorities no wrong in the way of misrepresentation or misquotation. But the length of the General Index will give some idea of the multiplied chances of inaccuracy which are involved where so many statements, dates, and references are included in a space so limited. Although strict vigilance has been used, it would be too much to hope that entire exactness has been attained ; and the Author will, therefore, feel indebted to those among his readers who will bring to his notice any errors which may have escaped detection.