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The Book of Delight and Other Papers

By: Israel Abrahams

Preface: The chapters of this volume were almost all spoken addresses. The author has not now changed their character as such, for it seemed to him that to convert them into formal essays would be to rob them of any little attraction they may possess.

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English Literary Criticism

By: Joshua Hutchinson

Preface: In the following pages my aim has been to sketch the development of criticism, and particularly of critical method, in England; and to illustrate each phase of its growth by one or two samples taken from the most typical writers. I have in no way attempted to make a full collection of what might be thought the most striking pieces of criticism to be found in our literature. Owing to the great wealth of such writing produced during the last sixty years, it is cle...

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A Piece of Red Calico

By: Frank Richard Stockton

Excerpt: Before beginning the relation of the following incidents, I wish to state that I am a young married man, doing business in a large city, in the suburbs of which I live.

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Strong as Death

By: Guy de Maupassant

Broad daylight streamed down into the vast studio through a skylight in the ceiling, which showed a large square of dazzling blue, a bright vista of limitless heights of azure, across which passed flocks of birds in rapid flight. But the glad light of heaven hardly entered this severe room, with high ceilings and draped walls, before it began to grow soft and dim, to slumber among the hangings and die in the portieres, hardly penetrating to the dark corners where the gil...

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Many Voices

By: Edith Nesbit

Excerpt: THE RETURN The grass was gray with the moonlit dew, The stones were white as I came through; I came down the path by the thirteen yews, Through the blocks of shade that the moonlight hews. And when I came to the high lych?gate I waited awhile where the corpses wait; Then I came down the road where the moonlight lay Like the fallen ghost of the light of day.

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The Arrow of Gold : A Story between Two Notes

By: Joseph Conrad

Excerpt: THE pages which follow have been extracted from a pile of manuscript which was apparently meant for the eye of one woman only. She seems to have been the writer?s childhood?s friend. They had parted as children, or very little more than children. Years passed. Then something recalled to the woman the companion of her young days and she wrote to him: ?I have been hearing of you lately. I know where life has brought you. You certainly selected your own road. But t...

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On Conducting

By: Richard Wagner

TRANSLATOR'S NOTE. Wagner's Ueber das Dirigiren was published simultaneously in the Neue Zeitschrift fur Musik and the New-Yorker Musik-zeitung, 1869. It was immediately issued in book form, Leipzig, 1869, and is now incorporated in the author's collected writings, Vol. -- VIII. p. 325-410. (Gesammelte Schriften und Dichtungen von Richard Wagner, ten volumes, Leipzig, 1871-1883.) For various reasons, chiefly personal, the book met with much opposition in Germany, but it ...

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The Shuttle

By: Frances Hodgson Burnett

Excerpt: Chapter 1. THE WEAVING OF THE SHUTTLE No man knew when the Shuttle began its slow and heavy weaving from shore to shore, that it was held and guided by the great hand of Fate. Fate alone saw the meaning of the web it wove, the might of it, and its place in the making of a world?s history. Men thought but little of either web or weaving, calling them by other names and lighter ones, for the time unconscious of the strength of the thread thrown across thousands of...

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Notre Dame des Eaux

By: Ralph Adams Cram

West of St. Pol de Leon, on the sea-cliffs of Finisterre, stands the ancient church of Notre Dame des Eaux. Five centuries of beating winds and sweeping rains have moulded its angles, and worn its carvings and sculpture down to the very semblance of the ragged cliffs themselves, until even the Breton fisherman, looking lovingly from his boat as he makes for the harbor of Morlaix, hardly can say where the crags end, and where the church begins. The teeth of the winds of t...

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The Greek View of Life

By: Goldsworthy Lowes Dickinson

Preface: The following pages are intended to serve as a general introduction to Greek literature and thought, for those, primarily, who do not know Greek. Whatever opinions may be held as to the value of translations, it seems clear that it is only by their means that the majority of modern readers can attain to any knowledge of Greek culture; and as I believe that culture to be still, as it has been in the past, the most valuable element of a liberal education, I have h...

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Micromegas

By: Voltaire

Excerpt: Preface de l'Editeur L'immense correspondance de Voltaire ne contient pas un mot qui puisse faire connaitre l'epoque de la publication de Micromegas . L'edition que je crois l'originale est sans millesime et avec un titre grave. L'abbe Trublet, dans ses Memoires sur Fontenelle, n'hesite pas a dire que Micromegas est dirige contre Fontenelle; mais il ne parle pas de la date de sa publication. J'ai donc conserve celle que donnent les editions de Kehl (1752). Il ex...

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Memoirs of Europe

By: Manley

Excerpt: SIR, As a Dedication is of necessity towards the Ornament of a Work of this Kind, I cou?d not hesitate upon my Choice, because Experience (and the Example of the Indians, who in the Worship of their Demons, consult only Fear, which seems to be their strongest Passion) has taught me to secure any One that might have been my Hero, from the well?bred, further Reflections, of so polite a Pen as yours. Tho? your Worship, in the Tatler of November the Tenth, has been ...

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Cyprus, As I Saw It in 1879

By: Baker, Samuel White, Sir 1821-1893

INTRODUCTION: I do not intend to write a history of Cyprus, as authorities already exist that are well known, but were generally neglected until the British occupation rescued them from secluded bookshelves. Even had I presumed to write as a historian, the task would have been impossible, as I am at this moment excluded from the world in the precincts of the monastery of Trooditissa among the heights of ancient Olympus or modern Troodos, where books of reference are unkn...

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God's Good Man

By: Marie Corelli

Excerpt: It was May?time in England. The last breath of a long winter had blown its final farewell across the hills, the last frost had melted from the broad, low?lying fields, relaxing its iron grip from the clods of rich, red?brown earth which, now, soft and broken, were sprouting thick with the young corn?s tender green. It had been a hard, inclement season. Many a time, since February onward, had the too?eagerly pushing buds of trees and shrubs been nipped by cruel c...

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A Solution of the Algiers Mystery

By: Enoch Arnold Bennett

Excerpt: ?I am unaware of the precise technical term, sir, but the launch awaits you. Perhaps I should have said it is alongside.? The reliable Lecky hated the sea; and when his master?s excursions became marine, he always squinted more formidably and suddenly than usual, and added to his reliability a certain quality of ironic bitterness. ?My overcoat, please,? said Cecil Thorold, who was in evening dress. The apartment, large and low, was panelled with bird?s?eye maple...

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Legends and Lyrics 2Nd Series

By: Adelaide Anne Procter

The lights extinguished, by the hearth I leant, -- Half weary with a listless discontent. -- The flickering giant-shadows, gathering near, -- Closed round me with a dim and silent fear. -- All dull, all dark; save when the leaping flame, -- Glancing, lit up a Picture's ancient frame. -- Above the hearth it hung. Perhaps the night, -- My foolish tremors, or the gleaming light, -- Lent power to that Portrait dark and quaint - -- A Portrait such as Rembrandt loved to paint ...

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The Complete Works of Artemus Ward, Part 6

By: Charles Farrar Browne

PART VI. ARTEMUS WARD'S PANORAMA. 6.1. PREFATORY NOTE BY MELVILLE D. LANDON. The fame of Artemus Ward culminated in his last lectures at Egyptian Hall, Piccadilly, the final one breaking off abruptly on the evening of the 23d of January, 1867. That night the great humorist bade farewell to the public, and retired from the stage to die! His Mormon lectures were immensely successful in England. His fame became the talk of journalists, savants, and statesmen. Every one seem...

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The Frogs

By: Aristotle

Introduction: Aristophanes, the greatest of comic writers in Greek and in the opinion of many, in any language, is the only one of the Attic comedians any of whose works has survived in complete form He was born in Athens about the middle of the fifth century B C, and had his first comedy produced when he was so young that his name was withheld on account of his youth. He is credited with over forty plays, eleven of which survive, along with the names and fragments of so...

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The Cherry Orchard

By: Anton Pavlovich Chekhov

Excerpt: ACT ONE A room which is still called the nursery. One of the doors leads into ANYA?S room. It is close on sunrise. It is May. The cherry?trees are in flower but it is chilly in the garden. There is an early frost. The windows of the room are shut. DUNYASHA comes in with a candle, and LOPAKHIN with a book in his hand. LOPAKHIN. The train?s arrived, thank God. What?s the time? DUNYASHA. It will soon be two. [Blows out candle] It is light already. LOPAKHIN. How muc...

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The Crimson Fairy Book

By: Andrew Lang, M.A.

Excerpt: Each Fairy Book demands a preface from the Editor, and these introductions are inevitably both monotonous and unavailing. A sense of literary honesty compels the Editor to keep repeating that he is the Editor, and not the author of the Fairy Tales, just as a distinguished man of science is only the Editor, not the Author of Nature. Like nature, popular tales are too vast to be the creation of a single modern mind.

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