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Page:Notes and Queries - Series 12 - Volume 10.djvu/510

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420 NOTES AND QUERIES. 12 S.X.MAY 27, 1922. find in the little vivid pictures of human activity or experience in the latter half of the Iliad, or still more in the Odyssey. The Norse poems form an obvious contrast with the Anglo-Saxon, both from the editor's point of view (for, instead of depending upon a single MS., the text has to be established by a considera- tion of numerous transcripts) and from that of their content. They are historical and mytho- logical, celebrating heroes, tragedies and battles. The introductory essays o*n these particularly that on EgilFs lament for his two sons and that on the ' Battle of the Goths and Huns ' are particularly to be commended. In the latter Miss Kershaw advances the opinion that it has been too hastily assumed that the Gothic invasion of the regions of the lower Danube implied the evacuation of their old territories. The invaders may have been a surplus population, and the Roman report of them could give no account of the numbers or condition of the nation at home. An assumption of this kind would have an important bearing on the interpretation of the oldest Teutonic poetry. The account of the perpendicular loom to elucidate the grisly figure of the web of slaughter in the ' Barraoarljotf ' is cleverly put together. The wpak part of the book will be found in the translations. Such a phrase as "It will be realized by him who experiences it " may be barely justified as rendering the main sense of the original ; but this would have been easy to render equally well in simple English. Tialf- defaced and prosaic words like " realize " and continue " are much too common, and even the more vivid actions and figures of the poems hardly avail to strike out a happy turn of speech. It may be replied that the English is meant merely for a crib, but a crib, since it is designed to be used by the inexperienced, should not jar against the original. The Letters from George W. Eveleth to Edgar Allan Poe. Edited by Thomas Ollive Mabbott. (The New York Public Library.) THE correspondence between Eveleth and Poe, though slight in volume, possesses no little intrinsic interest. Eveleth was a young man away in Maine, who selected Poe from all the writers of whom he knew anything for " his especial favour- ite." He wrote to Poe, telling him this, in a lengthy letter of headlong enthusiasm, craving more of Poe's work, and setting out what he liked in it. A correspondence grew up of which, on Eveleth's side, we have eleven letters in little more than three years. The two men never met, but Eveleth's criticisms counted for some- thing with Poe and deservedly. No small degree of personal intimacy soon arose between them, and this young admirer found courage to send his friend not only frank notice of any falling off in work, but also warnings as to his dangerous course of life. These letters were omitted when Poe's ' Complete Works ' were published by Professor Harrison in 1902, their existence being known but not their whereabouts. They had been, with the rest of Poe's papers, in the hands of R. W. Griswold, his literary executor, but were sold at auction in 1896, and thus not included in Mrs. Griswold's subsequent gift of the Poe material to the Boston Public Library. It is satisfactory that they havo now been recovered and have found a capable editor. " Poe-specialists " (Mr. Mabbott tells us Eveleth was the first " Poe-specialist ") will need no reminder about their value : the general reader will like them for their engaging naivete, their shrewdness, their occasional success in criticism, and the light they throw on youthful opinion in the America of the mid-nineteenth century. The brochure gives us Woolf's portrait of Poe and a reproduction of Mielatz's etching of the Poe cottage at Fordham. A Middle English Vocabulary. By J. R. R. Tolkien. (Clarendon Press. 4s. 6d. net.) THIS vocabulary is designed for use with Sisam's ' Fourteenth Century Verse and Prose.' Students should certainly make a note of it, since it ought considerably to increase the profit of studying that preparatory volume. The plan has been well conceived, for the attention is here given mainly to building up a good working knowledge of the mass of relatively inconspicuous words which form the backbone or general substance of the language. So far as we have examined it the vocabulary completely answers its intention, and we have nothing but praise for it whether as to fullness of matter, system of cross-references, general arrangement, or accuracy. A useful Index of Names is appended to the Glossary. The Ancient Buildings of Folkestone District. (First Series.) By W. H. E. (Folkestone, F. J. Parsons.) MB. W. H. ELGAB needs no introduction to anyone interested in the antiquities of Kent. He gives us here a collection of articles which have appeared in The Folkestone Herald, and which we are not surprised to learn have been demanded in book form. A word should be said in appreciation of the two pages headed ' General,' where we get a short, but very useful, resume of the antiquities of the district dealt with. Each bxiilding discussed is illustrated by a drawing and a plan by the author's hand, and this first series comprises twenty-six of them. The letterpress has the unmistakable character of a record of first-hand work. Though Mr. Elgar has acquainted himself with what antiquaries before him have found and said, he has gone over the buildings and the records afresh for himself, and to minute care and exactness is thus able to add the touch of life. Some of these buildings, and especially Sandgate Castle, will recall to old friends of ' N. & Q.' the name of the late Colonel R. J. Fynmore. The churches and the castles dealt with are, of course, well known, but some readers may be glad to know that they will find here a description, with plan and section, of the Martello towers. Jgottce* to Correponbent& EDITOBIAL communications should be addressed to " The Editor of ' Notes and Queries ' ' Adver- tisements and Business Letters to " The Pub- lisher " at the Office, Printing House Square, London, E.C.4 ; corrected proofs to The Editor, 4 N. & Q.,' Printing House Square, London, E.C.4.