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First among those debts which can be listed, though they cannot be adequately described, I am happy to name the encouragement of Viscount De L'Isle, VC, KG, the present head of the Sidney family, a man who cares for his heritage and in whom the time-honoured tradition of Penshurst's hospitality still lives. I am indebted to Dr Nicholas Pickwoad, bookbinder and conservator, for his expert physical examination of Robert Sidney's notebook, the results of which are embodied in Appendix D. I owe much to Peter Davidson and to my daughter Caroline for their generously shared musical knowledge and for bringing to life with their 'good voices' Robert's Song 6 and Song 12 as they may well have been heard in the family circle at Penshurst. The first stanza of Song 6 set to the tune of 'Walsingham', and the first stanza of Song 12 set to the tune of 'Où êtes vous allées', are reproduced in the Commentary below (pp. 313 and 322–3): the former was written out for this edition by Peter Davidson, the latter by my daughter Caroline. My grateful thanks to Dilly Bradford for being so much more than just an efficient typist: for the editor of Robert Sidney's poems she realized Dr Johnson's idea of the reader 'uncorrupted by literary prejudices' with whom the critic finally rejoices to concur. To others I am indebted for discussions, not indeed concerned with Robert Sidney nor strictly tied to any theme at all, but engendering insights which illuminate precisely because they are not trying specifically to 'explain'. Although their very nature requires that such debts remain nameless, they are by no means unremembered.

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