This book contains little that is not tolerably well known both to Shakespeare scholars and musicians who have any acquaintance with the history of music. It is hoped that it may be of some use to a large class of students of Shakespeare who have no opportunity to gather up the general information which will be found here. The author also ventures to believe that some brother musicians will be gratified to see at one view what a liberal treatment the great Poet has given to our noble art. It will be observed that settings of Shakespearian Songs of a later date than the generation immediately succeeding Shakespeare's death are not noticed. The large number of settings of the 18th century, by such men as Arne, though interesting musically, have nothing whatever to do with the student of Shakespeare and the circumstances of his time. It can only be regretted that so much of the original music seems to have perished.
The author is greatly indebted to Mr Aldis Wright, who has kindly looked through the work in MS., and contributed one or two interesting notes, which are acknowledged in the proper place.
London, March 1896.
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