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Tennyson's Poetry (Norton Critical Editions) Paperback – January 17, 1999

ISBN-13: 978-0393972795 ISBN-10: 0393972798 Edition: Second Edition
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robert W. Hill, Jr. is Professor of English at Middlebury College. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard and was the recipient of a John Harvard honorary scholarship. He has taught previously at Harvard and at Amherst.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 681 pages
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company; Second Edition edition (January 17, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393972798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393972795
  • Product Dimensions: 5.7 x 0.9 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #829,093 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

87 of 90 people found the following review helpful By Paul B. on January 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
Do not buy this book. I adopted it as a text book for a course I am teaching but have found typos in just about every poem I have read in it. Some you can figure out:
"How sweet--while warn airs lull us, blowling lowly"
"Warn" is supposed to be "warm." But others are really confusing:
"Thro' many a women acanthus-wreath divine!"
"Women" is supposed to be "woven." I checked these in the first edition of the Norton Critical--the first edition has the correct lines. I guess Norton just scanned the first edition and put it on the shelves as a second "edition" without even editing it.
Very sloppy work--please don't buy the book. The texts are well selected--it is nice to have The Princess available. And the critical readings are also well chosen. But the texts are hardly readible.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By D. Tomlinson on May 8, 2007
Format: Paperback
As editor of this collection, Robert W. Hill has, I feel, made some rather poor choices. For instance, in the Preface he audaciously writes that he removed "indisputably 'bad'" poems. In this capacity, he omitted "Godiva" -- a great loss -- as well as many charming short verses, well represented in other collections.

Additionally, although he claims deliberately not to have modernized Tennyson's spelling, he nevertheless Americanizes both spelling and punctuation (e.g. "honor" instead of "honour"; consistent placement of the full stop within quotation marks; and so on). This badly affects the very Englishness of Tennyson's voice, I should think.

I would recommend the edition for its highly informed annotations, but not as a source for the poems themselves.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Kevin M. Derby VINE VOICE on September 8, 2011
Format: Paperback
The second edition of "Tennyson's Poetry" as edited by Robert W. Hill is not going to win much praise when it comes to the editing of the poems. There are two excellent reviews at Amazon by Paul B. and D. Tomlinson that cover the problems with the editing and I can not add anything to them.

Nonetheless, I think the book has some solid qualities. While there are some omissions and the collection does seem to go a bit too in depth with some of Tennyson's earliest poems, Hill includes most of the major poems, a good selection of minor ones and does restore "The Princess" to a place of importance. The annotations and notes are excellent. So are the various essays by experts ranging from T.S. Eliot to Gertrude Himmelfarb to an excellent contribution by Hill himself.

While the various notes and essays do not completely redeem the work, they are an excellent--and accessible--resource for readers and students who want to understand Tennyson better. The second Norton edition is flawed but there are more assets here than strikes against it. There are better editions out there (the Longman edition edited by Christopher Ricks and the Oxford one with Adam Roberts come to mind) but this one is valuable.
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