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Fellow of the Royal Geographical and Royal Historical Societies ;
“The Poets Laureate of England," "The Esthetic Movement in England," etc.
“ We maintain that, far from converting virtue into a paradox, and degrading truth by ridicule, PARODY will only strike at
D'ISRAELI'S Curiosities of Literature.
H. W. LONGFELLOW, THOMAS HOOD, BRET HARTE,
HEN this Collection was originally projected it was intended to publish a few only of the best
Parodies of each author. After the issue of the first few numbers, however, the sale rapidly increased, and subscribers not only expressed their desire that the collection should be made as nearly complete as possible, but by the loans of scarce books, and copies of Parodies, helped to make it so.
This involved an alteration in the original arrangement, and as it would have been monotonous to
have filled a whole number with parodies of one short poem, such as those on “ To be or not to be," “Excelsior,” “My Mother," or Wolfe's Ode, it became necessary to spread them over several numbers. In the Index, which has been carefully prepared, references will be found, under the titles of the original Poems, to all the parodies mentioned. In all cases, where it has been possible to do so, full titles and descriptions of the works quoted from, have been given ; any omission to do this has been unintentional, and will be at once rectified on the necessary information being supplied.
By the completion of the second Volume of my collection, the works of the following Authors have been
fully treated, William Shakespeare, John Milton, John Dryden, Dr. Watts, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, H. W. Longfellow, Thomas Hood, Bret Harte, Matthew Arnold, E. A. Poe, Wolfe's Ode on the Death of Sir John Moore, and Miss Ann Taylor's poem “My Mother.” Certainly most of the best parodies on these Authors have been collected, yet as new ones are constantly appearing, a further collection of them will appear in a future part of Parodies, which will also contain any good old parodies that may hitherto have escaped notice.
In a few cases where parodies are to be found in easily accessible works, extracts only have been quoted, or
references given ; but it is intended in future, wherever permission can be obtained, to give the parodies in full, as they are found to be useful for public entertainments, and recitations. When the older masters of our Literature are reached, a great deal of curious and amusing information will be given, and it is intended to conclude with a complete bibliographical account of PARODY, with extracts and translations from all the principal works on the topic. Whilst arranging the first and second volumes, I have been gathering materials for those to come, which will illustrate the works of those old writers whose names are familiar in our mouths as household words. Much that is quaint and amusing will thus be collected, whilst many illustrations of our literature, both in prose and verse, which are valuable to the student, will for the first time be methodically arranged, annotated, and published in a cheap and accessible form.
In all Collections, such as this, there are some pieces which offend the taste, or run counter to
the prejudice of some individual reader, but great care has been taken to exclude every parody of a vulgar or slangy description, although it need hardly be said that many such parodies exist.
Every effort has been made to avoid giving preference to the parodies of any Political party, and this
could only be done by inserting the poems on their own merits. If any good Political Parody has been omitted, ignorance of its existence, not party motive, has been the cause.
I am much indebted to the following gentlemen either for permission to quote from their works, or for
copies of parodies sent to me for publication :-Messrs. P. J. Anderson, of Aberdeen; A. H. Bates, of Birmingham; W. Butler; George Cotterell (Author of the “ Banquet "); T. F. Dillon-Croker; F. B. Doveton;
James Gordon, F.S.A , of Edinburgh ; John H. Ingram ; Walter Parke (author of “The Lays