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The poems of Lucius Cary, Lord Falkland

By Ruth Carmichael Bellows


Lucius Cary, second viscount Falkland, has claimed the regard of historians. His poetry, however, has had little currency since his lifetime. While only eight poems have been collected previously in one edition, fifteen poems are included here. Four of these are unascribed in early witnesses. Two have been shown by Professor Murdock to be Falkland's. The physical settings and close stylistic analyses show the other two to belong in the canon. Each poem is presented in a careful old-spelling version of a copy-text chosen for demonstrable authority and/or scribal care. The apparatus displays substantive variants from the chosen copy-text. A commentary explaining the choice of copy-text and editorial decisions followed by informational notes appears for each poem. The reader of Falkland's poems may see the viscount's growth as a poet, a growth which epitomizes the achievement of English poets in general in the first half of the seventeenth century, from writing in a style almost as tangled as Donne's in the Satires to one that rivals Dryden's in its clarity and force

Topics: English literature
Year: 1991
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