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amid ancient Anglo-Saxon antiquary antiquity appears Armorica barbarous bard Beowulf Bishop Percy Britain British Britons Caedmon Caxton century character Chaucer chivalry Chronicle circumstance classical composed corrupt court critic Ctesias curious dialect diction discover Druids edition England English language evidence fancy favourite France French genius Gothic Gower Henry hero historian honour idiom imagination invention Italian Italy king knight labour land Latin Latin language Layamon learned literary Lord Lydgate manuscript master metrical Milton minstrel modern monarch monastery monk mysterious native never noble Norman obscure observed Occleve origin Paradise Lost passion period phrases Piers Ploughman poem poet poetical poetry preserved prince printer printing prose reader reign rhyme Ritson Robert of Gloucester romance rude Saxon seems Sharon Turner singular style tale taste tion tongue translation Tyrwhit vernacular idiom vernacular literature verse volume Warton Welsh words writers written
Page 66 - And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness, unto the judgment of the great day.
Page 1 - But his learned and able (though unfortunate) successor, is he who hath filled up all numbers, and performed that in our tongue, which may be compared or preferred either to insolent Greece, or haughty Rome.
Page 69 - In billows, leave i' the midst a horrid vale. Then with expanded wings he steers his flight Aloft, incumbent on the dusky air That felt unusual weight, till on dry land He lights, if it were land that ever...
Page 315 - Piety displays Her mouldering roll, the piercing eye explores New manners, and the pomp of elder days, Whence culls the pensive bard his pictured stores. Nor rough nor barren are the winding ways Of hoar antiquity, but strown with flowers.
Page 72 - ... the Hebrew (and I think the Syriac), the Greek, the Latin, the Italian, Spanish, and French. All which sorts of books to be confined to read, without understanding one word, must needs be a trial of patience almost beyond endurance.
Page 139 - Phlegra with the heroic race were join'd That fought at Thebes and Ilium, on each side Mix'd with auxiliar gods ; and what resounds In fable or romance of Uther's son, Begirt with British and Armoric knights...
Page 275 - Chaucer, notwithstanding the praises bestowed on him, I think obscene and contemptible: — he owes his celebrity merely to his antiquity, which he does not deserve so well as Pierce Plowman, or Thomas of Ercildoune.
Page 78 - Misgave him; he the faltering measure felt; And forth to meet her went, the way she took That morn when first they parted: by the tree Of knowledge he must pass; there he her met, Scarce from the tree returning; in her hand A bough of fairest fruit, that downy smiled, New gather'd and ambrosial smell diffused.
Page 198 - The emancipation of the national language was subsequently confirmed by another monarch. A curious anecdote in our literary history has recently been disclosed of Henry V. To encourage the use of the vernacular tongue, this monarch, in a letter missive to one of the city companies, declared that '' the English tongue hath in modern days begun to be honourably enlarged and adorned, and for the better understanding of thepeople the common idiom should be exercised in writing:" this was at once setting...