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CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS WAREHOUSE,
C. F. CLAY, MANAGER.
Leipzig: F. A. BROCKHAUS.
Meb York: G. P. PUTNAM'S SONS.
** 31 1971
(All Rights reserved.]
THE first volume of this edition of the English
writings of Cowley contained the whole of the poems that were collected for the folio which appeared the
year after his death. The present volume contains the poems not included in the folio, its prose contents and Cowley's English plays.
The earlier writings have been printed from a copy of the third edition of 1637, preserved in the University Library, Cambridge ; but, as that copy is imperfect, transcripts of the missing portions have been made from two other copies and the deficiencies supplied thereby. The collation of these similarly dated copies has shown that they differ in a few passages.
In the notes I have printed the variants noted in a collation of the first and second editions of 1633 and 1636. It may, perhaps, be permitted me to remind the reader that, of these earlier writings, Pyramus and Thisbe was written at the age of ten yeeres,' Constantius and Philetus when “two yeeres older' and that the volume entitled Poeticall Blossomes was first published when Cowley was but fifteen.
The Satyre called The Puritan and the Papist seems entitled to a definite place among the works of Cowley and I have therefore printed it as part of the present text. By the kindness of the authorities of Bodley's Library, Oxford, it has been set up from photographs of the very rare first edition of 1643.
The English play The Guardian, and its later recension Cutter of Coleman-Street, follow the first editions of