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A SHORT HISTORY OF

AMERICAN LITERATURE

DESIGNED PRIMARILY FOR USE

IN SCHOOLS AND COLLEGES

BY

WALTER C. BRONSON, A.M.

PROFESSOR OF ENGLISH LITERATURE IN BROWN UNIVERSITY

BOSTON, U.S.A.
D. C. HEATH & CO., PUBLISHERS

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PREFACE

ALTHOUGH this book is intended primarily for use in the class-room, the attempt has been made to give it a literary atmosphere, in the conviction that text-books on literature should contribute directly to the student's culture as well as to his knowledge of facts. It is hoped, therefore, that the general reader may find the following pages not wholly uninteresting. A good deal of the matter, especially in the foot-notes and the appendix, should also give the book some value for purposes of reference; to that end, definiteness and accuracy have been sought at no little labor; but in such a mass of details errors

are inevitable, and corrections will be welcomed.

The judicious teacher will readily recognize that the parts dealing with minor authors and with whole periods whose interest is historical rather than literary, as well as the more critical matter upon the greater authors, should be passed over lightly or omitted altogether when the class is immature. There is much to be said, however, in favor of requiring the older pupils in high schools and academies to devote some study to Colonial and Revolutionary literature, not only for its relation to the literature of the Republic, but also for the light it throws upon early American history and the life

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