Andrew Marvell, the Critical Heritage

By Elizabeth Story Donno | Go to book overview
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entitled ‘Eyes and Tears’ we take the following stanzas, which are characteristic of the tender, thoughtful nature of the man:

[Quotes ll. 1-8, 25-32, 37-48. ]

Such were the works of Andrew Mar veil—such was his life—such was his sudden, early death, before the prime of manhood was passed. Fearless of danger—not to be tempted or bought—keen of perception, and strong in argument, pure in life, and ever ready to stand nobly for the right, he is one of England’s noblest worthies—a man whose works and acts are wedded,

Like perfect music unto noblest words, [variant of Tennyson’s The Princess, VII, 270]

If there have been greater men, there have not been many better; and he does what few do—he justifies the eulogy which his tombstone records.


James Russell Lowell’s observations on Marvell’s poetry


The first American edition of Marvell’s poetry, edited by the poet and Harvard academician James Russell Lowell, was published in Boston in the British Poets Series under the general editorship of F. J. Child. Although the earliest copy I have seen is that of 1857, a later limited edition records the copyright notice for 1854 and his letters show that he was at work on it in that year. (See J. C. Chamberlain and Luther S. Livingston, A Bibliography of the First Editions in Book Form of the Writings of James Russell Lowell, pr. pr., 1914, pp. 48-9; they, however, had not found an edition with a copyright notice. ) Described by John Ormsby (No. 71) as ‘very elegant, it was to go through a dozen printings in the United States and


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