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A. L. IRVINE
ASSISTANT MASTER AT CHARTERHOUSE
A. C. CURTIS, LTD.
FOR years past the habit of learning poetry by neglect and from a lack of system. It has not merely been crowded out: it has frequently been dropped on the plea that not a tenth part of what was learned remained in the learner's memory. That is true enough, but it is not inevitable. If the same book is used in a succession of forms, and if the old pieces are constantly being learned afresh, then an ordinary memory will be capable of retaining the whole, or at least a large proportion of it. This is a matter of common experience.
This book has been put together for use in the four highest forms at Charterhouse. But I hope that it may also be found useful elsewhere, and that possibly the translations may make it interesting to some readers who are not called learn any of its contents by heart. No anthology can give complete satisfaction, least of all one so short as this : but I will offer no apology for any of my omissions, and of the pieces selected few, I trust, will be held to require defence. The translations are all in verse, except that on three occasions I have been unable to resist the beautiful prose of Mr. Mackail. I need hardly add that