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P R 2892
A 33 1891 mn IN
The compiler's original intention was to have pit before the public a revised edition of Ayscough's well-known work; but on examination its omissions and erroneous readings proved to be so numerous that it was considered better to begin de novo. The present volume is, therefore, the result of arduous and prolonged labour. It is not a Verbal but a Phrase Concordance ; and the compiler believes it to be at once the most comprehensive and the most accurate that has yet been published. He trusts that no phrase of any value, interest, or importance has been omitted ; while the key-words have been chosen carefully with the view of rendering reference as easy as possible. Even as a collection of “the beauties of Shakspeare"--of fine passages, images, allusions, sentiments—the present volume, it is hoped, will be acknowledged to possess more than ordinary claims to the reader's attention. A Verbal Concordance is useful only for purposes of reference; but a Phrase Concordance, so copious as that which the compiler now submits, may serve to remind the reader of favourite quotations, of choice and cherished lines, and supply him with a liberal compendium of Shakspearian thought.
Great attention has been paid to the text of every passage cited, with an anxious desire to decide always on the best reading. With this object, the compiler has compared the original issues with the editions by Dyce, the Cambridge editors, Knight, Collier, Howard Staunton, Grant White, Sidney Walker, J. O. Halliwell-Phillips, and others, and with the occasional renderings suggested by contributors to Notes and Queries, The Athenæum, &c.
It is with reverence the compiler places this modest stone on the colossal cairn which the industry and intelligence of editors, commentators, critics, and interpreters has slowly accumulated to the memory of Shakspeare.
W. H. D. A. 1885.