Page:Fables by La Fontaine translated by Elizur Wright.djvu/13

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PREFACE TO THE PRESENT EDITION.

ematics, but was principally engaged in agricultural pursuits at Canaan, Litchfield County, Connecticut, U. S. The younger Elizur Wright was born at Canaan in 1804. He graduated at Yale College in 1826, and afterwards taught in a school at Groton. In 1829, he became Professor of Mathematics in Hudson College, from which post he went to New York in 1833, on being appointed secretary to the American Anti-Slavery Society. In 1838 he removed to the literary centre of the United States, Boston, where he edited several papers successfully, and where he published his 'La Fontaine;' which thus, while it still remains his most considerable work, was also one of his earliest. How he was led to undertake it, he has himself narrated in the Advertisement to his first edition. But previously to 1841, the date of the first publication of the complete 'Fables,' he tried the effect of a partial publication. In 1839 he published, anonymously, a little 12mo volume, 'La Fontaine: A Present for the Young.' This, as appears from the title, was a book for children; and though the substance of these few (and simpler) fables may be traced in the later and complete edition, the latter shows a considerable improvement upon the work of his ''prentice hand.' The complete work was published, as we have said, in 1841. It appeared in an expensive and sumptuous form, and was adorned with the