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TO offer to the Public, without apology, another version of THE GEORGICS, after several translations by authors of no mean reputation, and particularly by Dryden and Warton, would argue a disregard of their merits, and an arrogance which I wholly disclaim. On their defects, if any, it becomes not me to descant; but rather to acknowledge their respective excellencies, which it has been my endeavour to imitate. For the grace, the spirit, and dignity of the versification of the most harmonious of our poets in the last century, combined with the learning, the ' refined taste, and correct judgment of the most eminent of our critics, in the present, could alone have conveyed to the English reader an adequate sense of the perfection of the Latin original.
That, with these sentiments of the difficulty of the execution, I should have ventured on the work, may justly subject me to the severity of criticism; to which I shall silently submit, from the consciousness that the version, which I now offer to the Public, has not been lightly undertaken, nor negligently laboured.
IN reprinting this beautiful version of the most classic poem of antiquity, the American Editor has been particularly attentive to rendering it acurate. A number of errors in the London edition have been corrected, and except in two or three instances of misplaced apostrophes, which were discovered too late for alteration, he flatters himself that it contains no inaccuracies of any importance.
In consequence of omitting the Latin, it was found that the Georgics alone would scarcely furnish sufficient matter for a handsome duodecimo volume, which induced the Editor to add Mr. Murphy's translation of the Bees from the Prædium Rusticum, a celebrated georgical poem by Jacopus Vanierius. As this contains a truer history of the polity and manners of those surprising insects than was known in the time of Virgil, it is hoped it may prove an acceptable addition to those readers who feel an interest in this subject.