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The Letters of Matthew Arnold (Hardcover)

Matthew Arnold

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ISBN 10: 0813917654 / ISBN 13: 9780813917658
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Hardcover. The letters in this volume show Arnold, now midway in his professional career, publishing his first volume of poems in a decade and emerging as a critic - simultaneously - of society, of e.Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. 544 pages. 1.139. Bookseller Inventory # 9780813917658

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Bibliographic Details

Title: The Letters of Matthew Arnold (Hardcover)

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:New

About this title


The University Press of Virginia edition of The Letters of Matthew Arnold, edited by Cecil Y. Lang, represents the most comprehensive and assiduously annotated collection of Arnold's correspondence available. When complete in six volumes, this edition will include close to four thousand letters, nearly five times the number in G.W.E. Russell's two-volume compilation of 1895. The letters, at once meaty and delightful, appear with a consecutiveness rare in such editions, and they contain a great deal of new information, both personal (sometimes intimate) and professional. Two new diaries are included, a handful of letters to Matthew Arnold, and many of his own that will appear in their entirety here for the first time. Renowned as a poet and critic, Arnold will be celebrated now as a letter writer. Nowhere else is Arnold's appreciation of life and literature so extravagantly evident as in his correspondence. His letters amplify the dark vision of his own verse, as well as the moral background of his criticism. As Cecil Lang writes, the letters "may well be the finest portrait of an age and of a person, representing the main movements of mind and of events of nearly half a century and at the same time revealing the intimate life of the participant-observer, in any collection of letters in the nineteenth century, possibly in existence."

The letters in this volume show Arnold, now midway in his professional career, publishing his first volume of poems in a decade and emerging as a critic―simultaneously―of society, of education, of religion, and, as always, of politics. In 1867 he published New Poems, containing several of his best-known and most beloved works, "Dover Beach," "Thyrsis," "Stanzas from the Grand Chartreuse" and many others, including the first reprint since 1852 of "Empedocles on Etna," and in 1869 Culture and Anarchy, of which the germ is visible in a remarkable letter to his mother in 1867, as well as the influential reports on continental schools, and the seminal St. Paul and Protestantism.

The marvelous letters to his mother and other family members continue unabated; two of his sons die, their deaths recorded in wrenching accents; his essays, possibly by design, draw flak from all directions, which Arnold evades (any poet to any critic) as adroitly or disarmingly as usual; for two years he takes into his home an Italian prince; and he is awarded an honorary Oxford degree. He remains in every way both Establishment and anti-Establishment, both courteous, as has been said, and something better than courteous: honest.

About the Author:

Cecil Y. Lang was Professor Emeritus of English at the University of Virginia. He was the editor of The Swinburne Letters, New Writings of Swinburne, and The Pre-Raphaelites and Their Circle, and coeditor of The Tennyson Letters.

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