« PredošláPokračovať »
the more popular matter which preceded and followed, as to make separation impracticable. There are very many to whom no apology will be necessary in this respect; and the Editor only adverts to it for the purpose of obviating, as far as may be, the possible complaint of the more general reader. But there is another point to which, taught by past experience, he attaches more importance, and as to which, therefore, he ventures to put in a more express and particular caution. In many of the books and papers, which have been used in the compilation of these volumes, passages from other writers, noted down by Mr. Coleridge as in some way remarkable, were mixed up with his own comments on such passages, or with his reflections on other subjects, in a manner very embarrassing to the eye of a third person undertaking to select the original matter, after the lapse of several years.
The Editor need not say that he has not knowingly admitted any thing that was not genuine without an express declaration, as in Vol. I. p. 1;* and in another instance, Vol. II. p. 379,+ he has intimated his own suspicion ; but, besides these, it is possible
* The Editor is here speaking of his note to the Fall of Robespierre, published in the former Vol. i. of the Literuru Remains, shewing that the second and third acts were by Mr. Southey.
+ This reference is to his remark on an extract from Crashaw's Hymn to the name of Jesus, printed in Vol. ii. of the Lit. Rem. as first published.
that some cases of mistake in this respect may have occurred. There may be one or two passages--they cannot well be more — printed in these volumes, which belong to other writers; and if such there be, the Editor can only plead in excuse, that the work has been prepared by him amidst many distractions, and hope that, in this instance at least, no ungenerous use will be made of such a circumstance to the disadvantage of the author, and that persons
greater reading or more retentive memories than the Editor, who may discover any such passages, will do him the favour to communicate the fact.
To those who have been kind enough to communicate books and manuscripts for the purpose of the present publication, the Editor and, through him, Mr. Coleridge's executor return their grateful thanks. In most cases a specific acknowledgment has been made. But, above and independently of all others, it is to Mr. and Mrs. Gillman, and to Mr. Green himself, that the public are indebted for the preservation and use of the principal part of the contents of these volumes. The claims of those respected individuals on the gratitude of the friends and admirers of Coleridge and his works are already well known, and in due season those claims will receive additional confirmation.
With these remarks, sincerely conscious of his own inadequate execution of the task assigned to him, yet confident withal of the general worth of the contents of the following pages — the Editor commits the reliques of a great man to the indulgent consideration of the Public.
E was one who with long and large arm still
rection he pressed forward, yet still took up so much more than he could keep together, that those who followed him gleaned more from his continual droppings than he himself brought home; – nay, made stately corn-ricks therewith, while the reaper himself was still seen only with a strutting armful of newly-cut sheaves. But I should misinform you grossly if I left you to infer that his collections were a heap of incoherent miscellanea. No! the very contrary. Their variety, conjoined with the too great coherency, the too great both desire and power of referring them in systematic, nay, genetic subordination, was that which rendered his schemes gigantic and impracticable, as an author, and his conversation less instructive as a man. Auditorem inopem ipsa copia fecit.—Too much was given, all so weighty and brilliant as to preclude a chance of its being all received,-so that it not seldom passed over the hearer's mind like a roar of many waters.
SHAKESPEARE, WITH INTRODUCTORY MATTER ON POETRY,
TIIE DRAMA, AND TIIE STAGE