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LOVE, strong as Death, is dead.
Come, let us make his bed

Among the dying flowers:
A green turf at his head;
And a stone at his feet,
Whereon we may sit

In the quiet evening hours.

He was born in the Spring,
And died before the harvesting:
On the last warm Summer day
He left us; he would not stay
For Autumn's twilight cold and grey.
Sit we by his grave, and sing,

He is gone away.

To few chords sad and low
Sing we so:

Be our eyes fixed on the grass
Shadow-veiled as the years pass,
While we think of all that was
In the long ago.

Christina Rossetti.



I, i. From The Earthly Paradise.

3, ii. From England's Helicon (1600), where it appears under the signature of "Ignoto," the initials




S. W. R." being obliterated. It is printed anonymously as "The Anatomy of Love," in Davison's Poetical Rhapsody (1602), and "an imperfect copy of the first and last stanzas forms," says Dr. Hannah, "the third song in T. Heywood's Rape of Lucrece. It is ascribed to Raleigh in Davison's list, Harl. MS. 280, fol. 99. used by the older



'Sauncing bell" is frequently poets for "saint's bell," " quod ad sancta vocat. Another form found is "sacring bell," the bell announcing the elevation of the host. 'Sain" is "say."

v. From The Merchant of Venice, act iii., scene 2. "Fancy," of course, is "love;"" as in A Midsummer Night's Dream :-" In maiden meditation, fancyfree,"

vi. From An Old Story, and other Poems, the authoress's only publication.

vii. From Phantastes, a Faerie Romance, in prose, interspersed with songs.

9, ix. From Valentinian.


x. Sonnet cxvi. Line 8 may perhaps be paraphrased thus: "whose stellar influence is unknown, although his angular altitude is determined."-Palgrave.

13, xiv. One of the most graceful pieces of a writer whose serious poetry is too little known and appreciated.


xv. "This song," says Leigh Hunt, "is a great favourite with musicians; and no wonder. Beaumont and Fletcher never wrote anything of the kind more lovely."

15, xvii. One of the few perfect pieces of a poet whom a sterner purpose would possibly have made the equal, or at least a worthy follower, of his father. As it is, this lyric and one or two sonnets are all that the



world is likely to remember of Hartley Coleridge's poetical productions.

15, xviii. Mr. Rossetti's poetry is too frequently dis-
figured by conceits, and the obscurity generated by
over-subtlety; but I venture to think that those of
his pieces which, by his kind permission, appear in
this volume, deserve high rank among the lyrics of
our time. The present sonnet is full of happy phras-
ing, though the ending of the last line but two
would be unpardonable in a less powerful writer.
16, xix. The inner meaning of this most musical poem
has never been adequately explained. "The idea,"
Mr. Kingsley says, "is that of twin-labour and twin-
fame in a pair of lovers." But the "bugle-song" is
probably one which can be more readily felt than

17, xxi. From Saint Paul's Magazine, vol. vii.
18, xxii. From Tyrannic Love.
19, xxiv. From Phantastes.
and ccli.




See Nos. vii., cxxviii.,

xxvi. From Cymbeline, act ii., scene 3. For "bin," which Hanmer obviously inserted for the sake of the rhyme, Dyce reads "is." A parallel to the opening line may be found in Lyly's "Song of Birds'


"Brave prick-song! who is't now we hear?
None but the lark so shrill and clear;

Now at heaven's gate she claps her wings,
The morn not waking till she sings."

The latter line finds a further parallel in the first
verse of the next piece, by Davenant (No. xxvii.):—
"Awake, awake, the morn will never rise

Till she can dress her beauty at your eyes." xxviii. From The Earthly Paradise.

xxix. This poem characterized by Mr. Palgrave as "a fine example of the high-wrought and conventional Elizabethan pastoralism, which it would be ludicrous to criticize on the ground of the unshepherdlike and unreal character of some images suggested." The version adopted in the text is that sanctioned by Dyce, with the addition of a penultimate verse, which was inserted by Izaak Walton, apparently from a contemporary broadsheet. imperfect copy, says Dr. Hannah, was printed in The Passionate Pilgrim, in 1599, and it is quoted in The Merry Wives of Windsor, act iii., scene 1.





It was printed at length with Marlowe's name in England's Helicon, and also in Walton's Complete Angler (1653), as "that smooth song which was made by Kit Marlowe, now at least fifty years ago.' Marlowe died sixty years before,-in 1593. Leigh Hunt describes the poem as one of those happy embodiments of a thought which all the world thinks at some time or other, and which therefore takes wonderfully with them when somebody utters it. The 'golden buckles' and 'amber studs' are not to be considered as a contradiction to the rest of the imagery; for we are to suppose it a gentlewoman to whom the invitation is addressed, and with whom her bridegroom proposes to go and play at shepherd and shepherdess, at once realizing the sweets of lowliness and the advantages of wealth. A charming fancy! and realized too sometimes; though Sir Walter Raleigh could not let it alone, but must needs refute it in some excellent verses, too good for the occasion."

xxx. From England's Helicon (1600), where the signature "Ignoto" is pasted over the initials "W. R." Izaak Walton, who, as in the previous piece, inserted the penultimate verse from a contemporary publication, speaks of it in his Complete Angler (1653) as "made by Sir Walter Raleigh in his younger days." The first verse appeared in The Passionate Pilgrim in 1599.

25, xxxi. From Twelfth Night, act ii., scene 3. 26, xxxiii. The critics, in praising Scott for the flow and brightness of his narrative poems, have scarcely done justice to the finish and melody of his lyrics, some of which have probably more real poetry in them than many passages in his longer and more famous works. See No. cliv.

28, xxxv. From The Auspicious Day, a drama from which the lyric on page vi.; is also extracted.


xxxvi. From As You Like It, act v., scene 4. The theory that "Sweet lovers love the Spring," is partially corroborated by Mr. Tennyson in "Locksley Hall:"

"In the Spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love."

See also the fifth and sixth lines of No. cxxxi. 29, xxxvii. One would like to know the author of this lovely lyric, every line of which is instinct with the


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See No. cxxv.

breath of poetry. Some of the phrasing is quite Tennysonian in its felicity. 30, xxxviii. From "Song ii." of Britannia's Pastorals. Perhaps these verses may induce the reader to renew his acquaintance with one of the finest of our older poems-one which seems utterly unknown to the younger members of this generation. 31, xxxix. From The Silent Woman. 33, xliii. From Lodge's Rosalind. 36, xlvii. Perhaps no writer,' says Mr. Palgrave, "who has given such strong proofs of the poetic nature has left less satisfactory poetry than Thomson. Yet he touched little which he did not beautify; and this song must make us regret that he did not more seriously apply himself to lyrical writing." 37, xlviii. Those who do not read Mr. Browning say he is obscure and unmelodious. So he is, sometimes; and yet his lyrics are among the clearest and most musical of the time. The reader is invited to study those which have been allowed to grace this selection. I do not doubt his verdict.

38, xlix. I shall be glad if this sonnet, and another piece by the same writer quoted in this volume, induce the reader to turn more often to the admirable writings of one whose reputation as a poet and a critic is at present confined to a comparatively small portion of the public.

40, lii. "This charming little poem, truly 'old and plain and dallying with the innocence of love,'” is "Noble taken from England's Helicon (1600).

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Henry Constable," says Edmund Bolton, in his Hypercritica, was a great master of the English tongue; nor had any gentleman of our nation a more pure, quick, or higher delivery of conceit." His chief work is Diana, or the excellent conceitful Sonnets of H. C. (1584).

41, liii. This and No. lv. are perhaps the best specimens of a poet whose poems have a freedom from conceits surprising in a writer of the sixteenth century. 42, liv. From Underwoods.


lvi. Printed from Aubrey's MSS. by Dr. Bliss, in his edition of Wood's Fasti. For a complete list of Essex's poems, see Dr. Hannah's Courtly Poets.

44, lviii.

"Sir John Suckling," says Hallam, "is acknowledged to have left far behind him all former

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