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In his introduction to this edition of Coleridge’s Marginalia, the late George Whalley wrote, “There is no body of marginalia — in English, or perhaps in any other language — comparable with Coleridge’s in range and variety and in the sensitiveness, scope, and depth of his reaction to what he was reading.” The Princeton edition of the Marginalia, of which this is the fifth volume, will bring together over eight thousand notes, many never before printed, varying from a single word to substantial essays. In alphabetical order of authors, the notes are presented literatim from the original manuscripts whenever the annotated volumes can be found. Each note is preceded by the passage of the original text that appears to have provoked Coleridge’s comment. Texts in foreign languages are followed by translations.
The present volume comprises annotations on more than sixty books (from Sherlock to “Unidentified”), including well-known works by Sir Philip Sidney, Southey, Spinoza, Swift, and Tennyson. There are extensive notes on texts by Heinrich Steffens, Emanuel Swedenborg, and Jeremy Taylor; on two histories of philosophy by Thomas Stanley and W. G. Tennemann; and also on the writings of St. Teresa of Avila. The subjects addressed range from literature and philosophy through religion, politics, history, and biography, to travel-writing and science.