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POETRY OF AMERICA

SELECTIONS FROM ONE HUNDRED AMERICAN POETS

FROM 1776 TO 1876.

WITH AN INTRODUCTORY REVIEW OF COLONIAL

POETRY,

AND SOME SPECIMENS OF NEGRO MELODY.

By W. J. LINTON.

LONDON: GEORGE BELL & SONS, YORK STREET,

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LONDON

PRINTED BY WILLIAM CLOWES AND SONS,

STAXFORD STREET AND CHARING CROSS.

PREFACE.

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The earliest project for a collection of Specimens of American poetry was that of James Rivington, a royalist printer of New York, who in 1773 sent out a circular to all reputed poets, requesting to be favoured with copies of their productions. The war for independence prevented the carrying out of this design; and no new attempt was made, except a small selection by Matthew Carey from nineteen writers, until 1793, when Richard Alsop printed at Litchfield, Connecticut, the first and only volume of a proposed series of American Poems, selected and original. In 1794 appeared an insignificant selection, entitled the Columbian Muse. Not till 1829 was there anything worth calling a collection. Then Mr. Samuel Kettell published in three volumes his Specimens of American Poetry, with critical and biographical notices; which was followed in 1831 by Dr. Cheever's American Common-Place Book; in 1839 by the Poets of America in two volumes edited by Mr. Keese, and a small selection made by Mr. Bryant; and in 1842 by the Poets and Poetry of America in one large octavo two-columned

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