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Selected Poems Paperback – 28 Mar 1991

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product details

  • Paperback: 508 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (28 Mar. 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140423656
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140423655
  • Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.5 x 12.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,680,277 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
This selection is edited by Gavin Edwards of Saint David's University College, Lampeter. His introduction is only six pages and is really what would otherwise be called a note to the text. The endnotes act more as a commentary on the poems, but even these are not really sufficiently informative. I found it far more insightful to read these poems in conjunction with Neil Powell's insightful biography and critique `George Crabbe: An English Life' (2004).

The selection commences with four early works: `Fragment, Written at Midnight', `The Hall of Justice', `Sir Eustace grey' and `The Village', from which comes the title of this review. In this last work, Crabbe relays his feelings and description of his origins at the Suffolk fishing port of Aldeburgh - "... where the heath, with withering brake grown o'er, | Lends the light turf that warms the neighbouring poor; | From thence a length of burning sand appears, | Where the thin harvest waves its withered ears; | ...". "Here joyless roam a wild amphibious race, | With sullen woe displayed in every face; ...". "Yet why, you ask, these humble crimes relate, | Why make the poor as guilty as the great? | To show the great, those mightier sons of Pride, | How near in vice the lowest are allied; | ..."

`The Borough', a poem in 24 letters (1804-09) follows. This edition includes only letters 19-22 inclusive, i.e. The Parish Clerk, Ellen Orford, Abel Keene, and peter Grimes. Extracts from Crabbe's preface appear as an appendix to the book.

Whilst only four of the 24 poems in `The Borough' are included, all 21 of Crabbe's `Tales' (1812) are featured.
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