Some of the works below are now available in pdf form through the Google Book Search™ service.
Each time I turn back to this book, I am amazed at just how comprhensive it is for a small paperback. Also a helpful introduction, glosses, and background information.
This is a fascinating collection of little known sonnets. The editors have culled from books and periodicals a treasury of poems rarely if ever anthologized before or since. Their notes at the end illuminate the eccentricities of the poets and their time.
A nice book to have around.
A beautiful little book. After it arrived in the mail, my friends realized I'd completely lost my mind.
An entertaining and useful collection, available through the Google Book Search™ service.
This proved to be the most readable brief survey of the English sonnet. Cruttwell is refreshingly frank about his personal taste in sonnets (describing, for example, his dislike of Keats as "doubtless one of my own blind spots"). When discussing Shakespeare, he gives the sonnets themselves more space than his commentary. I gained a deeper appreciation of Philip Sidney from this little book.
This brief introductory survey of Herbert's poetry is a monograph in the same series as the one on the English sonnet by Cruttwell above.
A beautiful book that includes nearly 500 sonnets by 81 poets. Short biographical notes make the book very readable and shed light on the lives of the many lesser known poets included. There is also a helpful Introduction and "Suggested Further Reading."
Along with Famous Nineteenth Century Faces, my most-used clip art. A must for anyone with a literary web site.
This book contains transcriptions of all of Constable's poems, an appendix of the questionable works published only in the 1594 edition of Diana, and valuable textual and biographical information.
A treasure trove of well known and obscure poetry from this period. The omission of Spenser, Shakespeare, and Milton allows the editors to divert the reader with often overlooked poets such as Charles Best. There is also a generous selection of poems of unknown authorship.
This anthology has a helpful Sonnet Criticism section, the source of some of the early critical quotes.
Yes, this was fun reading. This anthology was organized into subtopics of sorrow (e.g. Serenity, The Sting of Death, The Grave's Triumph, Farewell, Crossed Hands and Closed Eyes, Irrevocable, Bitter Remembrance, Vain Longing, Tender Memory, etc.)
I have an American edition of this classic anthology. In addition to the texts of 463 sonnets, Main provides generous notes.
At one dollar for over 170 sonnets, this is the best bargain. Several of the sonneteers included in these pages--Shakespeare, Donne, Milton, and Elizabeth Barrett Browning, to name a few--can be found in their own thrift paperback editions.
This fascinating anthology led me to Henry Constable's Spiritual Sonnets and some other unexpected discoveries.
This is a rather idiosyncratic collection of sequences, ranging in quality from Shakespeare to the Victorian poet David Gray. Houston seems to have few qualms about abridging (and renumbering) Sidney's Astrophel and Stella, yet the book does bring together much of the greatest sonnet work.
This is a great book of clip art and the source of drawings of 19th century poets included here.
I enjoyed this book very much, especially Spiller's readings of early Italian sonnets by Giacomo da Lentino (c. 1210-after 1230), Guittone d'Arrezo (c.1230-1294), Cecco Angiolieri (c.1260-c.1312), and others. He uses numerous examples to illustrate how the "space" of the sonnet came to be used and points out that "its very high degree of patterning and predictability makes it able to absorb a great deal of disturbance inside..." (p. 30). Spiller traces changes in the persona, the "/I/" of the sonnet, from an eloquent social voice to Petrarch's "voice of a sigh." He draws some parallels between da Lentino, the first Italian sonneteer, and Wyatt, the first English one--both courtiers under "cultured and ruthless despots." He goes on to discuss the early English sonneteers, the intriguing and problematic /I/ of Shakespeare, and further adaptations of the sonnet form through the time of Milton. But I found the discussion of the sonnet's origins the most valuable, how the form originated and developed, gaining respect and prominence as it absorbed more subject matter. "It was only after the Renaissance that an aesthetic theory developed in which sublimity could be a quality of condensation, rather than expansion, of material" (p. 9).
I'm indebted to Dr. Sterner not only for the wealth of sonnets included in his thesis, but also for his survey of American sonnets and his perspective on a century and a half of sonnet writing in the U.S.
A massive volume that included some 19th century poems I'd seen nowhere else.
One of the most attractive and lavishly illustrated historical anthologies of poetry I've seen, from Chaucer to the 1980s.
Source of many of the translations in World of Sonnets.
This is probably my favorite sonnet anthology. The editors are generous in their commentary (both in the amount of it and in the ability to find something interesting or redeeming in a wide variety of poems). White and Rosen draw interesting contrasts between writers and provide much helpful historical and biographical background.