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This is the first volume of Oxford's three-volume edition of The Complete Poems of William Barnes. William Barnes (1801-1886) was an outstanding but undervalued dialect poet, and this will be first critical edition of his complete poems. Volume I provides the first critical edition of his Poems of Rural Life, in the Dorset Dialect (1844), which broke new ground by memorializing in print the speech of a rapidly disappearing rural culture. Unfortunately, that 1844 volume has never been reprinted. This is partly because Barnes was persuaded to make its constituent poems more accessible to metropolitan readers of subsequent editions by spelling Dorset words in ways that approximated more closely to standard English, and partly because most editors and anthologists have reprinted only those revised versions of 1844 poems which Barnes published in his 1879 (and final) collection of his dialect poems.
By restoring the integrity of Barnes's first volume, and investigating both its literary lineages and dialectological preoccupations, this annotated edition will enable readers to experience the initial products of those extraordinary years when Barnes was unwaveringly confident in the expressive adequacy of the Dorset dialect as a medium for poetry. Much of the literary, historical, and topographical information here brought to bear on the 1844 volume is drawn from rarely cited regional publications as well as from Barnes's uncollected contributions to newspapers and journals. The Editors' Introduction, which describes the origins, nature, and reception of Barnes's inaugural volume, offers historical accounts of both the kinds of poetry it represents and the dialectological interests that underpin it.
This edition of Barnes's earliest poems in the Dorset dialect will prompt a reconsideration of their present status in the Victorian literary canon.
Tom Burton is a Professor of English at the University of Adelaide, where he has taught for many years. He was born in Barbados; grew up on a farm in Shropshire; studied English at the University of Bristol; and taught for three years in secondary schools in East Africa and England before going to Australia in the mid 1970s. He has edited a popular book of knowledge in 15th-century English verse for the Early English Text Society, and has written two books for the general public on changing English. He has given lectures and seminars on Barnes's poetry at many universities in the UK and USA and is a frequent speaker to literary societies, writing circles, U3A groups, and on radio. His William Barnes's Dialect Poems: A Pronunciation Guide was published in 2010.
K.K. Ruthven was educated at the University of Manchester, and became a Professor of English at the universities of Canterbury (New Zealand), Adelaide, and Melbourne. At Adelaide he edited Southern Review (1981-85), and at Melbourne a monograph series of introductions to recent theories and critical practices in the humanities and social sciences (19 vols, 1993-96). From 1983 until 2002, he was a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities, for which he organised a conference on new developments in the humanities, papers from which he edited as Beyond the Disciplines: The New Humanities (1992).
Table of Contents
Preface Abbreviations References List of illustrations and maps Introduction Beginnings Dialect and Dialectologies Dialect Poetry The 1844 Volume A Dissertation on the Dorset Dialect of the English Language (1844) Poems in the 1844 Collection Spring The Spring The Woodlands Liady-Day an Ridden House Easter Time Dock Leaves The Blackbird Woodcom Feast The Milk-Maid o' the Farm The Girt Woak Tree That's in the Dell Vellen the Tree Bringen Oon Gwain o' Zundays Evemen Twilight Evemen in the Village May Bob the Fiddler Hope in Spring The White Road up Athirt the Hill The Woody Holler Jenny's Ribbons Eclogue: The 'Lotments Eclogue: A Bit o' Sly Coorten Summer Evemen, an' Maidens Out at Door The Shepherd o' the Farm Vields in the Light Whitsuntide an' Club Wa'ken Woodley The Brook that Runn'd by Gramfer's Sleep did Come wi' the Dew Sweet Music in the Wind Uncle an' Ant Haven Oon's Fortun A-Tuold Jean's Wedden Dae in Marnen Rivers Don't Gi'e Out Miaken up a Miff Hay-Miaken Hay-Carren Eclogue: The Best Man in the Vield Wher We Did Kip Our Flagon Wik's End in Zummer, in the Wold Vo'ke's Time The Mead A-Mow'd The Sky A-Clearen The Evemen Star o' Zummer The Clote I Got Two Viel's Polly Be-en Upzides wi' Tom Be'mi'ster Thatchen o' the Rick Bees A-Zwarmen Readen ov a Headstuone Zummer Evemen Dance Eclogue: Viairies Fall Carn A-Turnen Yoller A-Halen Carn Harvest Huome: The Vust Piart: The Supper Harvest Huome: Second Piart: What Tha Done ?ter Supper A Zong ov Harvest Huome Poll's Jack Da The Ivy The Welshnut Tree Jenny Out vrom Huome Grenley Water The Viary Veet That I Da Meet Marnen Out A-Nutten Tiaken in Apples Miaple Leaves Be Yoller The Weather-Beaten Tree Shodon Fiair: The Vust Piart Shodon Fiair: The Rest o't Martin's Tide Guy Faux's Night Night A-Zetten In Eclogue : The Common A-Took In Eclogue : Two Farms in Oone Winter The Vrost A Bit o' Fun Fanny's Bethdae What Dick an' I Done Grammer's Shoes Zunsheen in the Winter The Weepen Liady The Happy Daes When I Wer Young In the Stillness o' the Night The Settle an' the Girt Wood Vire The Carter Christmas Invitation Keepen Up o' Chris'mas Zitten Out the Wold Year Woak Wer Good Enough Oonce Miary-Ann's Chile Eclogue: Faether Come Huome Eclogue: A Ghost Miscellaneous Pieces A Zong The Maid var My Bride The Huomestead The Farmer's Woldest Daeter Uncle Out o' Debt an' Out o' Dannger The Church an' Happy Zunday The Wold Waggon The Common A-Took In A Wold Friend The Ruose That Deck'd Her Breast Nanny's Cow The Shep'erd Buoy Hope A-Left Behine A Good Faether The Beam in Grenley Church The Vaices That Be Gone Poll Looks A-Know d'Avore The Music o' the Dead The Pliace a Tiale's A-Tuold o' Ant's Tantrums The Stuonen Puorch Farmers' Sons Jean The Dree Woaks The Huomestead A-Vell into Han The D'rection Post Jean o' Grenley Mill The Bells of Alderburnham The Girt Wold House o' Mossy Stuone Eclogue: The Times A Witch Poems Not Included in the 1844 Collection Eclogue: A Cousin Down vrom Lon'on Eclogue: Emigration Eclogue: The New Poor Laws The Work Buoy o' the Farm The Drove Axen Maidens to Goo to Fiair A Glossary of the Dorset Dialect of the English Language (1844; 1847) Notes on the Dissertation Notes on the Poems Notes on the Glossary Appendices: 1. Dissertation: additional variants in punctuation and spelling 2. Poems: additional variants in punctuation and spelling 3. Poems: variants found in doubtful manuscripts