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Andrew Marvell   By: (1850-1933)

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Note: Images of the original pages are available through Internet Archive/Canadian Libraries. See http://www.archive.org/details/andrewmarvell00birruoft

The caret character (^) indicates that the remainder of the word is superscripted. Italicized words or phrases are placed between underscore ( ) marks.

English Men of Letters Edited by John Morley

ANDREW MARVELL

by

AUGUSTINE BIRRELL

New York The MacMillan Company London: MacMillan & Co., Ltd. 1905 All rights reserved Copyright, 1905, By the MacMillan Company.

Set up and electrotyped. Published September, 1905. Norwood Press J.S. Cushing & Co. Berwick & Smith Co. Norwood, Mass., U.S.A.

PREFACE

I desire to express my indebtedness to the following editions of Marvell's Works:

(1) The Works of Andrew Marvell, Esq., Poetical, Controversial, and Political : containing many Original Letters, Poems, and Tracts never before printed, with a New Life. By Captain Edward Thompson. In three volumes. London, 1776.

(2) The Complete Works in Verse and Prose of Andrew Marvell, M.P. Edited with Memorial Introduction and Notes by the Rev. Alexander B. Grosart. In four volumes. 1872.

( In the Fuller Worthies Library. )

(3) Poems and Satires of Andrew Marvell, sometime Member of Parliament for Hull. Edited by G.A. Aitken. Two volumes. Lawrence and Bullen, 1892.

Reprinted Routledge, 1905.

Mr. C.H. Firth's Life of Marvell in the thirty sixth volume of The Dictionary of National Biography has, I am sure, preserved me from some, and possibly from many, blunders.

A.B.

3 NEW SQUARE, LINCOLN'S INN, June 3, 1905.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER I PAGE EARLY DAYS AT SCHOOL AND COLLEGE 1

CHAPTER II

"THE HAPPY GARDEN STATE" 19

CHAPTER III

A CIVIL SERVANT IN THE TIME OF THE COMMONWEALTH 48

CHAPTER IV

IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS 75

CHAPTER V

"THE REHEARSAL TRANSPROSED" 151

CHAPTER VI

LAST YEARS IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS 179

CHAPTER VII

FINAL SATIRES AND DEATH 211

CHAPTER VIII

WORK AS A MAN OF LETTERS 225

INDEX 233

ANDREW MARVELL

CHAPTER I

EARLY DAYS AT SCHOOL AND COLLEGE

The name of Andrew Marvell ever sounds sweet, and always has, to use words of Charles Lamb's, a fine relish to the ear. As the author of poetry of exquisite quality, where for the last time may be heard the priceless note of the Elizabethan lyricist, whilst at the same moment utterance is being given to thoughts and feelings which reach far forward to Wordsworth and Shelley, Marvell can never be forgotten in his native England.

Lines of Marvell's poetry have secured the final honours, and incurred the peril, of becoming "familiar quotations" ready for use on a great variety of occasion. We may, perhaps, have been bidden once or twice too often to remember how the Royal actor

"Nothing common did, or mean, Upon that memorable scene,"

or have been assured to our surprise by some self satisfied worldling how he always hears at his back,

"Time's wing├Ęd chariot hurrying near."

A true poet can, however, never be defiled by the rough usage of the populace.

As a politician Marvell lives in the old fashioned vivacious history books (which if they die out, as they show some signs of doing, will carry with them half the historic sense of the nation) as the hero of an anecdote of an unsuccessful attempt made upon his political virtue by a minister of the Crown, as a rare type of an inflexible patriot, and as the last member of the House of Commons who was content to take wages from, instead of contributing to the support of, his constituents... Continue reading book >>




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