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ESSAY ON MILTON
WITH NOTES AND AN INTRODUCTION
JAMES GREENLEAF CROSWELL, A.B.
HEAD-MASTER OF THE BREARLEY SCHOOL; FORMERLY ASSISTANT PROFESSOR OF
LONGMANS, GREEN, AND CO.
FOURTH AVENUE & 30TH STREET, NEW YORK
It is hard for an editor of a book designed for formal study to determine precisely what parts of the learning that has gathered about his subject should be regarded as indispensable to young students. It is harder still for the editor of a book designated, in the new uniform entrance requirements, for current reading and not for formal study, to determine what he may assume as already a part of the pupil's knowledge. Two methods of treatment at once suggest themselves. He may annotate the text very sparingly, on the assumption that an intelligent boy knows enough to read ordinary English prose literature understandingly, and should be forced to find out for himself the meaning of words or allusions that he does not comprehend. Or he may annotate profusely, on the much sounder assumption that boys and girls are not living dictionaries and encyclopædias, and scarcely ought to be expected to interrupt reading which they are encouraged to enjoy in order to search various volumes for information that might just as well be put at once before them. Both extremes the editor of the present volume has tried to avoid. He has endeavored to give the pupil such facts as will enable him to read rapidly and understandingly; he has endeavored also to stimulate in the pupil an intelligent curiosity in regard to matters worth further investigation and further knowledge.
This edition of Macaulay's essay follows the authoritative text of which Longmans, Green, and Co. are the publishers. J. G. C.