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treatment has been attempted. Yet something of what is here offered, illustrative of the Satirists with whom I deal, will be found applicable to those whom I omit; while, if I ventured on another book on the subject, such would by no means supersede or interfere with the present one. Bad or good, it is complete in itself: the crab has its own rotundity, as well as the golden pippin!
There are two facts of the highest interest about satirical literature: 1st, that the Satires of every age have been important agents in the historic work done in it ;—2d, that Satires, as literary objects, give us valuable aid in studying the life of the age in which they were produced. I think that general readers somewhat neglect the Satirists; and one of my objects has been, I confess, in the language of Cicero, “ut laudem eorum jam prope senescentem, quantum ego possem, ab oblivione hominum atque a silentio vindicarem.” (De Orat. ii. 2.) To this end, I have aimed at a popular and picturesque delineation of them and their works. I have especially wished to show, too, that the great Satirists have been good and lovable men:—for I never made the too common mistake of supposing Satire to be like a certain poison known to the ancients, which best retained its properties when carried in an ass's hoof!
In the leading principles of the book, my dear Austin, I am aware that you agree with me, however you may dissent in less important particulars; and I end, as I began, by testifying with how much pleasure I am,
Yours very sincerely,