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LOVE SONGS

OF ENGLISH POETS

OF ENGLISH POETS

1500-1800

WITH NOTES

BY

RALPH H. CAINE

Behold a wonder here!
Love hath received his sight!
Which many

hundred

year
Hath not beheld the light'

OLD ENGLISH SONG
REESE L-PARY

UNIVERSITY

CALIFORNIA

LONDON

WILLIAM HEINEMANN

[All rights reserved]

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Is it not a little singular that, amid the many treasuries of poetry which have been published with so much acceptance during the last five-andtwenty years, there have been so few devoted to the poetry of love? This is the consideration which emboldens me in putting forth the present volume. Its scope is limited, and even within its limits its possibilities are circumscribed. A body of English love-poetry from the earliest times to the present has appeared to me too great for representation within the space of a single volume. I have therefore contented myself with the fullest selection possible, down to the beginning of the present century. With the public favour for what I now present, it may, at some other moment, be my pleasure to offer a supplementary anthology, devoted exclusively to the nineteenth century-a period embracing a body of work

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