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is here passed in review. That very singular genius William Blake, e. g., in whom the influence of "Ossian," among other things, is so strongly apparent, I leave untouched; because his writings-partly by reason of their strange manner of publication-were without effect upon their generation and do not form a link in the chain of literary tendency.

If this volume should be favorably received, I hope before very long to publish a companion study of English romanticism in the nineteenth century.

H. A. B.

October, 1898.




The Subject Defined.

To attempt at the outset a rigid definition of the word romanticism would be to anticipate the substance of this volume. To furnish an answer to the questionWhat is, or was, romanticism? or, at least, What is, or was, English romanticism?-is one of my main purposes herein, and the reader will be invited to examine a good many literary documents, and to do a certain amount of thinking, before he can form for himself any full and clear notion of the thing. Even then he will hardly find himself prepared to give a dictionary definition of romanticism. There are words which connote so much, which take up into themselves so much of the history of the human mind, that any compendious explanation of their meaning-any definition. which is not, at the same time, a rather extended description-must serve little other end than to supply a convenient mark of identification. How can we define in a sentence words like renaissance, philistine, sentimentalism, transcendental, Bohemia, preraphaelite, impressionist, realistic? Definitio est negatio. It

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