27 JUNE 1896, Page 9

Book-Verse: an Anthology of Poems of Books and Bookman from

the Earliest Times to Recent Years. Edited by W. Roberts. (Elliot Stock.)—If an anthology of this kind be called for, it could not have had a more competent editor than the author of " The Book- hunter in London." The little volume is as complete, or nearly so, as such a book can be made, and we, at all events, are unable to point out many striking omissions. There aro a few, and among them is the passage by Daniel beginning- " 0 blessed lettere that combine in one

All ages past and make one live with all,"—

which is perhaps as noble a defence of book-knowledge as any in the language. And while a short quotation is given from " Aurora Leigh," Mr. Roberts has overlooked one or two far finer and more significant passages in the first book of that poem. The whole of Crabbe's " Library -' is transcribed, with the remark that it needs much temerity to do so, since that poet is now so little read. The editor than refers to Fitzgerald's regret at the neglect into which he has fallen, and mentions the high opinion formed of him by Byron. He might have added that Crabbe was one of Scott's especial favourites, that Charles Fox asked to have his poems read to him in his dying hours, and that in recent days Lord Tennyson, Cardinal Newman, and Mr. Swinburne have expressed their high estimate of his genius. "The Library," it is needless to say, though serviceable for this anthology, is far from giving an adequate illustration of the author's powers. Mr. Roberts appears to have searched the magazines for materials. Among the pieces selected are some lines in Blackwood by B. Simmons, the Irish poet, written " in a volume of Westall's Milton." It would have been better, however, to have copied them from the volume of Simmons's poems published two years later, where they appear under another title, and in an enlarged and better form.