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FROM THE PROSE WRITINGS OF

MATTHEW ARNOLD

Edited with

Notes and an Introduction

BY

LEWIS E. GATES

NEW YORK

HENRY HOLT AND COMPANY

COPYRIGHT, 1897,

BY

HENRY HOLT & CO.

PREFACE.

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THESE Selections from Arnold are meant to go with the Selections from Newman already included in Enge lish Readings. Newman and Arnold were both Oxford men; both were devoted believers in the academic ideal; both discussed and dealt practically with educational problems, and yet both touched life in many other ways and are remembered as men of letters or leaders of thought, rather than as mere academicians. Although Arnold never imposed himself on his generation as did Newman, never ruled the imaginations of large masses of men, or was so prevailing and picturesque a figure as Newman, yet no less than Newman he represents one distinct phase of nineteenthcentury academic culture; from 1855 to 1870 he was probably the man of letters whom the younger generation at Oxford most nearly accepted as their natural spokesman.

The Selections aim to present, in the briefest possible compass, what is most characteristic in Arnold's criticism of literature and life. His conception of the critic was as the guardian of culture, as called upon to pass judgment on the various expressions of life, and especially upon books in their relation to life, and to determine their influence on the temper and ideals of the public. He is to be an adept in life,

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