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Sir Walter Scott as a Critic of Literature   By: (1878-1952)

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[Transcriber's note: All footnotes have been gathered at the end of the text.]

SIR WALTER SCOTT

AS A CRITIC OF LITERATURE

BY

MARGARET BALL, PH.D.

New York THE COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS 1907

Copyright, 1907 BY THE COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY PRESS Printed from type November, 1907

PRESS OF THE NEW ERA PRINTING COMPANY LANCASTER, PA.

PREFACE

The lack of any adequate discussion of Scott's critical work is a sufficient reason for the undertaking of this study, the subject of which was suggested to me more than three years ago by Professor Trent of Columbia University. We still use critical essays and monumental editions prepared by the author of the Waverley novels, but the criticism has been so overshadowed by the romances that its importance is scarcely recognized. It is valuable in itself, as well as in the opportunity it offers of considering the relation of the critical to the creative mood, an especially interesting problem when it is presented concretely in the work of a great writer.

No complete bibliography of Scott's writings has been published, and perhaps none is possible in the case of an author who wrote so much anonymously. The present attempt includes some at least of the books and articles commonly left unnoticed, which are chiefly of a critical or scholarly character.

I am glad to record my gratitude to Professor William Allan Neilson, now of Harvard University, and to Professors A.H. Thorndike, W.W. Lawrence, G.P. Krapp, and J.E. Spingarn, of Columbia, for suggestions in connection with various parts of the work. From the beginning Professor Trent has helped me constantly by his advice as well as by the inspiration of his scholarship, and my debt to him is one which can be understood only by the many students who have known his kindness.

MOUNT HOLYOKE COLLEGE, June, 1907.

CONTENTS

CHAPTER I.

Introduction: An Outline of Scott's Literary Career 1

CHAPTER II.

Scott's Qualifications as Critic 9

CHAPTER III.

Scott's Work as Student and Editor in the Field of Literary History

1. The Mediaeval Period (a) Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border 17 (b) Studies in the Romances 32 (c) Other Studies in Mediaeval Literature 40

2. The Drama 46

3. The Seventeenth Century: Dryden 59

4. The Eighteenth Century (a) Swift 65 (b) The Somers Tracts 70 (c) The Lives of the Novelists, and Comments on other Eighteenth Century Writers 72

CHAPTER IV.

Scott's Criticism of His Contemporaries 81

CHAPTER V.

Scott as a Critic of His Own Work 108

CHAPTER VI.

Scott's Position as Critic 134

APPENDICES

I. Bibliography of Scott, Annotated 147 II. List of Books Quoted 174 Index 179

A DATED LIST OF SCOTT'S BOOKS, ASIDE FROM THE POEMS AND NOVELS, AND OF THE PRINCIPAL WORKS WHICH HE EDITED (PERIODICAL CRITICISM NOT INCLUDED).

1802 3 Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border (edited).

1804 Sir Tristrem (edited).

1806 Original Memoirs written during the Great Civil War; the Life of Sir H. Slingsby, and Memoirs of Capt. Hodgson (edited).

1808 Memoirs of Capt. Carleton (edited).

1808 The Works of John Dryden (edited).

1808 Memoirs of Robert Carey, Earl of Monmouth, and Fragmenta Regalia (edited).

1808 Queenhoo Hall, a Romance; and Ancient Times, a Drama (edited)... Continue reading book >>




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