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The  Library  of  the  World's  Best  Literature,  Ancient  and  Modern,  is  a  work  of 
enormous  proportions.  Setting  out  with  the  simple  goal  of  offering  "American 
households  a  mass  of  good  reading",  the  editors  drew  from  literature  of  all  times  and 
all  kinds  what  they  considered  the  best  pieces  of  human  writing,  and  compiled  an 
ambitious  collection  of  45  volumes  (with  a  46th  being  an  index-guide).  Besides  the 
selection  and  translation  of  a  huge  number  of  poems,  letters,  short  stories  and 
sections  of  books,  the  collection  offers,  before  each  chapter,  a  short  essay  about  the 
author  or  subject  in  question.  In  many  cases,  chapters  contemplate  not  one  author, 
but  certain  groups  of  works,  organized  by  nationality,  subject  or  period;  there  is,  thus, 
a  chapter  on  Accadian-Babylonian  literature,  one  on  the  Holy  Grail,  and  one  on 
Chansons,  for  example.  The  result  is  a  collection  that  holds  the  interest,  for  the 
variety  of  subjects  and  forms,  but  also  as  a  means  of  first  contact  with  such  famous 
and  important  authors  that  many  people  have  heard  of,  but  never  read,  such  as 
Abelard,  Dante  or  Lord  Byron.  According  to  the  editor  Charles  Dudley  Warner,  this 
collection  "is  not  a  library  of  reference  only,  but  a  library  to  be  read." 

This  ninth  volume  contains  chapters  from  "Chamisso"  to  "Collins". 

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This  LibriVox  recording  is  in  the  public  domain  and  may  be  reproduced,  distributed  or  modified  without 
permission.  The  LibriVox  objective  is  to  make  all  books  in  the  public  domain  available,  for  free,  in 
audioformat  on  the  Internet.  For  more  information  or  to  volunteer,  please  visit 

Cover  image:  Vasconcelos  public  library  in  Mexico  City  by  Jorge  Mendoza  on  wikimedia  commons. 
Cover  designed  by  Availle.  This  design  is  in  the  public  domain.