tions with the original manuscript preserved in the library of Pembroke College, Oxford, I have made some corrections in the text, and supplied some omissions. On one entry which had been suppressed I wish light could be thrown. Who was dying Jenny' for whose spiritual comfort Johnson provided'? Was she some poor outcast, like the wretched woman he carried home and nursed there for thirteen weeks ??

An interesting collection of manuscripts which had once belonged to Miss Reynolds I am allowed to use by the kindness of Lady Colomb, of Dronquinna, Kenmare, a descendant of Sir Joshua's sister, Mary. Most of them are given in Croker's edition, but not all. I have revised his version, and have supplied omissions, and corrected the text where it was faulty 3. Some letters which he had not seen or had passed over are now printed for the first time *, as well as the corrections which Johnson made in ‘Renny's' verses when he 'mended some bad rhymes 5.'

To my friend, Mr. Robert B. Adam, of Buffalo, whose Johnsonian collection far surpasses any we have on this side of the Atlantic, I am greatly indebted for the liberality with which he has placed all his treasures at my service. I wish every collector of autographs were like him, free from that petty selfishness which makes a man hug some famous author's letter as a miser hugs his gold, rejoicing in it all the more as he keeps it entirely to himself.

My kinsman, Mr. Horatio Percy Symonds, of Beaumont Street, Oxford, has allowed me to make use of the curious manuscript notes on the margin of a copy of the first edition

[ocr errors]


1 Vol. i. p. 124.

Vol. ii. p. 168. 3 See vol. ii. p. 449, n. 3, for the correction of some curious blunders. • Vol. ii. pp. 455-460.

5 Vol. ii. p. 279, n. 4.


of the Life, which his father, a Johnsonian collector, purchased many years ago. They were written, I have no doubt, by the Rev. John Hussey, 'who, as Boswell tells us, 'had long been in habits of intimacy with Johnson".'

Messrs. J. Pearson & Co., of 5 Pall Mall Place, London, I have to thank for permission to print some hitherto unpublished letters of Johnson which were in their possession.

To Mr. John Murray, of Albemarle Street, the publisher of The Life of Reynolds by C. R. Leslie and Tom Taylor, I am indebted for permission to reprint an interesting paper by Sir Joshua on Johnson's character.

Mr. G. K. Fortescue, of the British Museum, has once more greatly lessened my labours by the assistance he has so kindly given me when I have been working in the Library. His friends rejoice in his well-earned promotion, much as they must miss him in his old place in the Reading Room.

It only remains for me to express the hope that the kind welcome which was given by scholars on both sides of the Atlantic to my editions of the Life and Letters will be extended also to these two volumes.


February 7, 1897.

[blocks in formation]
« ElőzőTovább »