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New Poet-Laureate

by
19 July 2013

July 18th, 1913.

WHO was to be the new Poet-Laureate or whether the office might not with advantage be abolished is a question that has been warmly debated in the Press and in Society. The Prime Minister has - wisely, as we think - turned a deaf ear to the popular voice, and has chosen a "poets' poet" rather than a Tyrtaeus, whose verse could quicken manly hearts to thoughts of war, or one who could indite graceful epithalamia. Mr Robert Bridges succeeds to the laurel crown that has adorned the brows of former Court poets, and, if his selection will fail to be appreciated by the crowd, it will none the less be approved by a smaller circle which will recognize in Mr Asquith's choice of Mr Bridges a desire to do honour to the cause of poetry rather than to appoint a versifier for State occasions. For Mr Bridges has devoted the best years of his learned life to the scholarly study of the science and art of poetry. We in particular are interested in his appointment by reason of the services he has rendered to hymnology and Church music. The Yattendon Hymnal, of which he was the editor, is a monument of fine taste both in music and in verse, and it is only to be regretted that its merits are so little known and appreciated. In time, however, Mr Bridges will, we believe, come into his own, and another generation will perceive that we had a prophet among us to whom we failed to pay sufficient honour.

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