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THE GREAT ENGLISH

LETTER-WRITERS

By W.J. and C. W. Dawson

The Reader's Library. To be issued

in 14 volumes. Each, 16mo, cloth,

net $1.00. Designed to meet the rapidly growing taste for the finest products of literature, which have already attained classical value and importance. The object is thus to present in a concise form a series of volumes, dealing with the growth and development of the various modes of literary expression.

The notes will be of a biographical, historical, and chronological character; each volume will be prefaced by a critical essay.

Dr. W. J. Dawson is already widely known by his books on literature, particularly-THE MAKERS OF MODERN ENGLISH. His reputation as a critic and master of style is firmly established. Mr. Coningsby W. Dawson is a graduate of Oxford University, and a high honor man of the Oxford School of History.

Now Ready.
Vol. I & II The Great English Letter Writers.

To Follow
III The Great Essayists.
IV & V The Great Historians.
VI The Great Biographies.
VII The Great Lyric Poems.
VIII The Great Short Stories.
IX & X The Great Novels.
XI The Great Confessions.
XII The Great Nature Lovers.
XIII The Great Devotional Writers.

XIV The Great Accusers. This list will be subject to additions and revision, and the order of publication may be varied.

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Copyright, 1908, by
FLEMING H. REVELL COMPANY

New York : 158 Fifth Avenue
Chicago : 80 Wabash Avenue
Toronto : 25 Richmond Street, W.
London : 21 Paternoster Square
Edinburgh : 100 Princes Street

PREFACE

THE purpose of The Reader's Library is to present in succinct form a survey of English literature. The method adopted is to assemble under generic titles the best specimens of the various branches of literature, in such a way that each volume shall be of equal service to the scholar and the general reader.

The first two volumes of the series, The Great English Letter-Writers, are now presented to the public. The selections have been carefully arranged, with a view not to chronological order so much as to the illustration of the growth of the art of letter-writing. The object of the editors has been to present what may be called a pageant-view of their theme: to show how various men and women, scattered through different ages, have borne themselves under the same crises of emotion or action. That which is obviously lost in abandoning a strictly chronological arrangement is recaptured in the introductory essays to each volume, which aim at a general historic survey of the art of letter-writing, together with a critical estimate of the writers, and of their relationship to the literature of their age. Biographical details concerning these writers are contained in the body of the volume.

Where a subject cannot be adequately treated in one volume, as is the case with The Great Letter-Writers, each volume contains a separate essay, so that it may be, as far as is possible, complete in itself.

192662

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