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PREFACE

This volume will, I hope, be found to contain nearly all the genuine poetry in our language fitted to please children,-of and from the age at which they have usually learned to read,—in common with grown people. A collection on this plan has, I believe, never before been made, although the value of the principle seems clear.

The test applied, in every instance, in the work of selection, has been that of having actually pleased intelligent children ; and my object has been to make a book which shall be to them no more nor less than a book of equally good poetry is to intelligent grown persons. The charm of such a book to the latter class of readers is rather increased than lessened by the surmised existence in it of an unknown amount of power, meaning and beauty, beyond that which is at once to be seen; and children will not like this volume the less because, though containing little or nothing which will not at once please and amuse them, it also contains much, the full

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excellence of which they may not as yet be able to understand.

The application of the practical test above mentioned has excluded nearly all verse written expressly for children, and most of the poetry written about children for grown people. Hence, the absence of several well-known pieces, which some persons who examine this volume may be surprised at not finding in it.

I have taken the liberty of omitting portions of a few poems, which would else have been too long or otherwise unsuitable for the collection; and, in a very few instances, I have ventured to substitute a word or a phrase, when that of the author has made the. piece in which it occurs unfit for children's reading. The abbreviations I have been compelled to make in the “Ancient Mariner," in order to bring that poem within the limits of this collection,

so considerable as to require particular mention and apology.

No translations have been inserted but such as, by their originality of style and modification of detail, are entitled to stand as original poems.

COVENTRY PATMORE.

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INDEX OF FIRST LINES

A barking sound the shepherd hears
A chieftain to the Highlands bound.
A country life is sweet
A fox, in life's extreme decay .
A fragment of a rainbow bright
A lion cub, of sordid mind
A Nightingale that all day long
A parrot, from the Spanish main.
A perilous life, and sad as life may be
A widow bird sate mourning for her love .
A wonder stranger ne'er was known
Abou Ben Adhem (may his tribe increase)
Ah, what can ail thee, wretched wight.
Among the dwellings framed by birds
An ancient story I'll tell you anon
An old song made by an aged old pate.
An outlandish knight came from the North lands
Art thou the bird whom man loves best
As I a fare had lately past
As it fell upon a day.
As in the sunshine of the morn
At dead of night, when mortals lose
Attend all ye who list to hear our noble England's praise
jefore the stout harvesters falleth the grain.
Beside the Moldau's rushing stream.
Clear had the day been from the dawn .
Close by the threshold of a door naild fast
Come dear children, let us away
Come listen to me, you gallants so free
Come live with me and be my Love.
Come unto these yellow sands

PAGK 243 246

31 171

41 301 276 12+

76 329 165 19 20 32 159 136 221 99

9 169 271 295 70

115 96

35 303 50 44

67

Did you hear of the curate who mounted his mare
Do you ask what the birds say? The sparrow, the dove.

PAGE
304

3

Faintly as tolls the evening chime
Fair daffodils, we weep to see .
Full fathom five thy father lies

81
207
57

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Gentlefolks, in my time, I've made many a rhyme.
Good-bye, good-bye to Suminer
Good people all, of every sort .

149
106
241

Hail, beauteous stranger of the grove
Half a league, half a league
Hamelin Town's in Brunswick
Happy insect! what can be
Her arms across her breast she laid.
Here lies, whom hound did ne'er pursue
Ho, sailor of the sea .
How beautiful is the rain

43
174
150
117
200
18
68
15

I am monarch of all I survey
I come from haunts of coot and hern
I had a dove, and the sweet dove died
I sail'd from the Downs in the Nancy
I sprang to the stirrup, and Joris and he
I wander'd by the brook-side
If all the world was apple-pie
In ancient times, as story tells
In distant countries have I been.
In her ear he whispers gaily
In the hollow tree in the grey old tower
Into the sunshine
It chanced upon a winter's day
It is an ancient Mariner .
It is not growing like a tree
It was a summer evening
It was the schooner Hesperus
I've watch'd you now a full half-hour

86

4
125
74
38
322
339
254
317
119
107
226
281

58
340
184

78
291

.

Jaffar, the Barmecide, the good Vizier
Jenny Wren fell sick
John Bull for pastime took a prance
John Gilpin was a citizen

96
336
242
138

King Lear once ruled in this land

267

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