Ian Jack and Margaret Smith (eds), The Poetical Works of Robert Browning, Vol. 1: Pauline; Paracelsus
pg vPREFACE AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
This edition has been planned by Ian Jack, who is responsible for the principal part of the Introductions, the explanatory notes, and most of the Appendices. Margaret Smith is responsible for the text, the textual part of the Introductions, and Appendices B and D.
First we wish to thank the authorities of a number of libraries whose assistance has been indispensable. The librarian of the Forster Collection in the Victoria and Albert Museum has permitted us to print the holograph manuscript of Paracelsus, and to quote the notes in the 'Mill' copy of Pauline. We are grateful to the authorities of the Lowell Collection in the Houghton Library at Harvard for information about their copy of Pauline. We are indebted to the librarians of the Beinecke Library at Yale and the Turnbull Library in Wellington for microfilms of their annotated copies of Paracelsus. We have also been granted access to the annotated copy of that poem in the Sterling Library, while Dr Lola L. Szladits of the Berg Collection in New York Public Library has been most helpful. We are very much indebted to the authorities of Boston Public Library, and in particular to Mr James Lawton, for photographs of their proof copy of Sordello. Mr Mark F. Weimer and others at Syracuse University Library, New York, have gone out of their way to assist us. We have used the annotated copy of Sordello in the British Library, as well as their copy of The Poetical Works of 1888–9 annotated by Browning (the 'Dykes Campbell' copy). We have been greatly helped by the staff of Cambridge University Library, by Mr Vincent Quinn, Librarian of Balliol College, and by Mr Anthony Burton of the Victoria and Albert Museum Library. Professor Jack Herring of the Armstrong Library at Baylor has helped us with microfilms. Many other librarians have been kind enough to answer our enquiries.
Professor Richard L. Purdy, the authority on Thomas pg viHardy, has permitted us to consult and quote from the unpublished Browning letters in his possession.
No one has helped us more than Mr Philip Kelley, whose knowledge of the whereabouts of Browning manuscripts is unrivalled. During the later stages of our work his Checklist of the Brownings' correspondence has proved a valuable tool. Mr Kevin Van Anglen and Professor Robert L. Blackmore have gone to great trouble to transcribe and check for us material in American libraries which we were unable to visit. Professor John Grube drew our attention to an important document relating to Sordello (Appendix D, Volume II).
Dr Daniel Waley has been astonishingly patient with a series of minute questions about the period of Italian history which he knows in such detail. Dr John Gilmour has been our learned consultant on botanical matters, while the leading authority on Paracelsus, Dr Walter Pagel, has most kindly answered a number of questions. In matters relating to the troubadours we have been fortunate in having Dr Leslie Topsfield to advise us, while Professor Walter Ullmann has also been generous with his knowledge.
Colleagues of the senior editor at Pembroke College, Cambridge, have answered questions on German literature, astronomy, mineralogy, lizards, and other matters. His particular thanks are due to Dr Malcolm Lyons for assistance with Greek, and Dr Richard McCabe for help with Latin. Other Cambridge scholars who have come to our assistance have been Professor Uberto Limentani, Dr John Beer, and the late Professor Geoffrey Lampe. Mr Edward G. Tasker was good enough to check the text of the 'Lines to the Memory of James Dow' inscribed on the tombstone in Barnsley.
Not our least debt is to Dr Leofranc Holford-Strevens, whose scrupulous learning has provided reassurance and support.
7 May 1980