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THE need of a new edition of the collected works
of Swift having been evident to students of English literature for many years past, it may be hoped that the undertaking of which this volume is the commencement will not in any quarter be regarded as superfluous. The well-known edition of Sir Walter Scott was issued for a second time in 1824, and since that date there has been no serious attempt to grapple with the difficulties which then prevented, and which still beset the attainment of a trustworthy and substantially complete text. They were certainly not successfully encountered in the edition by Roscoe in two royal 8vo. volumes, the chief merit of which consists in its comparative cheapness.
There have, however, not been wanting excellently edited texts of Swift's more important works, and many well-known students or lovers of Swift, either as editors, biographers, or collectors of his works, have been accumulating material which has now, perhaps for the first time, made it possible to overcome the difficulties whether as to genuineness or authenticity of text with which the editor of Swift is so frequently confronted. The work and researches of Mr. John Forster, Mr. Henry Craik, Mr. Stanley Lane Poole,
Mr. Churton Collins, Mr. Leslie Stephen, Mr. Elwin, Mr. Courthope, Colonel F. Grant, and others, have made accessible new material which is indispensable to other labourers in the same field, and to all of them the general editor of the present edition desires to express his indebtedness in one way or another. His main object is to supply a correct, authentic, and, as far as possible, complete text of Swift's works, and with this object early printed editions and original MSS. have been carefully collated. For the furtherance of this work he has especially to thank Colonel Grant, who generously placed at his service his invaluable collection of Swift pamphlets. He must also thank individually Mr. Stanley Lane Poole for spontaneously sending him some useful information.
Though any systematic explanatory or critical annotation has not been regarded as within the scope of this edition, a few footnotes have been included supplementary to those in the original editions. These are distinguished in this volume by the initials of the writer, thus [S.] indicates Sir Walter Scott, [H.] Hawkesworth, and [T. S.] the present editor.
Special attention has been given to the various portraits of Swift, most of which will be included in succeeding volumes of this edition. For much help and advice in this matter thanks are due to Sir Frederick Falkiner, Recorder of Dublin, to the Science and Art Department at South Kensington, to Mr. Cust, the Director of the National Portrait Gallery, and to Mr. Strickland, of the National Gallery of Ireland.
The portrait which forms the frontispiece to this volume was formerly. in the possession of Mr. E. Meade, and was lent by him to the National Portrait
Exhibition held at South Kensington in 1867. The present ownership of the picture is unknown, and it is through the courtesy of the authorities at South Kensington in permitting the use of the negative made at the time of the exhibition, that the reproduction has been possible. The portrait itself is extremely interesting, in that it is the only one known, with any claim to authenticity, which represents Dean Swift as a young man.
The introductory biography contributed by Mr. Lecky appeared originally in his volume on "Leaders of Public Opinion in Ireland," published in 1861, but it has been rewritten and a good deal amplified for its present purpose.
RESOLUTIONS WHEN I COME TO BE OLD (FAC-
SIMILE AND TRANSCRIPT)
A TALE OF A TUB
By W. E. H.
THE ACCOMPLISHMENT OF THE FIRST OF MR.
BICKERSTAFF'S PREDICTIONS .