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钱锺书:BOOK NOTE I  

2008-01-27 13:19:49|  分类: 钱锺书英文文集 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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Selections of English Prose from Chaucer to Hardy with Introduction and Notes by A. L. Pollard. Commercial Press. 1930. PP. xiii + 503. $3.00 Mex.
  Professor Pollard-Urquhart's editions of some of the best-known novels of Scott and Dickens have long been found helpful by Chinese students of English, and this new anthology of his will be equally serviceable. The selections extend chronologically, as the title shows, " From Chaucer to Hardy " . Contemporary authors have no place in this compilation for the very good reason, I suppose, that what is contemporary may be merely temporary. American authors are not represented, and so are a few English masters of style, e.g. Leigh Hunt and Stevenson. But the book is fairly comprehensive and representative, covers pretty much the whole field of prose writing—not excluding the Novel, a genre of literature which lends itself least to selection, and can meet a great variety of tastes and moods. In making extracts from authors like Mandeville, Caxton, Greene, Lodge, Ascham, Hakluyt etc., Professor Pollard-Urquhart has made these old English masters accessible to those of us who have hitherto known them merely as names in Wardour Street, if they have known them at all. The book is also very painstakingly furnished with footnotes, biographical notes, and an introductory survey of the development of English prose; and students are equipped with everything which makes for facility of reading and intelligent appreciation. Indeed a more catholic and inexpensive companion volume to histories of English literature can not be found in China.
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