Harper's Cyclopaedia of British and American Poetry (Classic Reprint)

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Excerpt from Harper's Cyclopaedia of British and American Poetry

Poms have multiplied during the present century as at no previous period. Never was the accomplishment of verse so general as now. Weren't we in the luck of it, said Scott to Moore, to have come before all this talent was at work i If the remark was apt in their day, how much more so is it at the present time! Works in verse, that would have made a reputation a century ago, fall now almost unnoticed from the press. It is hard for the most diligent critic to keep pace with the fertility of our poets. The present compiler had despaired of doing this long before he had proceeded far in his labors. The consequence is that there have been omissions for which no better reason can be given than that they were unavoidable. An apology under such circumstances would be out of place.

It cannot be overlooked, too, that much of the best poetry of recent times has been the product of feminine genius. The progress of women in enlarging the sphere of their occupations, and competing with the employments of the stronger sex, is repre sented in no department of intellectual work more signally than in verse. Every month new poetry, far above mediocrity, if not of really superior quality, is sent forth.

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