I've bought eight or ten copies of this silly old book over the years, starting in the mid-sixties. Every couple or three years, I give my copy away to a friend, and so have to buy a new one. It's that time again. It'll be a real loss if it ever goes out of print.
Unless this anthology of poetry has been seriously altered since 1965, (that being the edition I borrowed from my mother four years ago and do not plan to return), it a wonderful collection. I have returned to old favorites and discovered poets and poems countless times in its yellowing pages. Whenever I travel it has a place in my bags, wherever I stay it has a place on my shelve until sheer age and use make it fall apart.
Even if no anthology will ever be complete, this is a magnificent collection of brilliant minds.
The book offers you the chance to indulge yourself in your old favourites and to go on a treasure hunt.
Whilst it is needless to mention that the likes of Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare, George Gordon Byron, William Wordsworth, Lewis Carroll and William Butler Yeats are to be found, it is worth pointing out that there are also some lesser-known poets.
From the Middle English of Chaucer, it leads you chronologically to more modern texts.
When I saw the first review I just had to say that I did the same thing. Except the copy I "borrowed" was the first printing Cardinal did in 1952. Only half of my copy is intact and I think it's time to get a new one. Very worthwhile.