Part of Ginn and Company’s series of Standard English Classics, this compilation of poems from 19th century poet Robert Browning was edited and introduced by Robert Morss Lovett, Professor of English and eventually the Dean of the junior college at the University of Chicago. By no means meant to be a complete rendering of Browning’s works, Lovett focuses this text on the generally shorter poems of the early period of Browning’s career rather than the more long-form peoms of his later work (xxvii).
Lovett celebrates Browning as an exemplary poet for his age, one who lives in the time he is given rather than dreaming constantly of a bygone age. Through his notes and explanations, a true love of Browning’s work shines through: “All this marks Browning as a representative poet of the nineteenth century. Of all his contemporaries, except Whitman, he is the most completely sympathetic with the life of his time, most comprehensive in his interests, most democratic in his outlook. Other poets of the time preserve the traditions of romanticism with a certain wistful looking backward at earlier and simpler ages. Though, like Tennyson, they deal with the present and its problems, they choose their subjects carefully, as if treading somewhat gingerly the shore of the sea of modern life, a little disturbed by its confusion and noise. Browning, on the contrary, plunges in boldly, delighting in the strong surf and pungent odour. He takes all human life as his province, and treats that life, not only as it is expressed in dignified political institutions like feudalism, and important people like King Arthur, but in individuals of all ages of history, and of every worldly station.” (xvii)
- Title: Selections from Browning
- Editor: Robert Morss Lovett
- Publisher: Ginn and Company
- Year: 1906
- Place: Boston, MA
- Series: Standard English Classics
- Printer: Atheneum Press
- Length: 208pp
- Dimensions: 4.5” x 6.75”
- Condition: Bound in green cloth covered boards with black particulars. There is some shelf-wear, particularly noticeable on the creases at the spine. The endpapers are slightly more tanned with age than the rest of the block. Generally, the pages are clean. There are some small folds along the top edge where the pages appear to have been slightly crushed, as well as folds on the bottom corner of three pages. A grease stain sits between p.6-7 and bleeds through to pages 4 and 9. The binding is tight, and there are no extraneous marks.