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THE present volume has the advantage-and all the disadvantages--of being the first book on Herman Melville to be published in England.
Acknowledgements are due to Professor Raymond Weaver's Herman Melville, Mariner and Mystic (1921), and to its author for inquiries readily answered; to Mrs. Eleanor Metcalf, through whose kindness I have been able to approach her mother, Melville's daughter; to Mr. H. S. Salt, who at one time contemplated writing a book on Melville, and freely placed at my disposal the material in his hands; to Mr. Robin Flower, Mr. Conrad Aiken, the Rev. A. J. Young, M.A., and many others who have helped me with suggestions which became the more valuable as the lack of biographical material became more baffling; and, if he will permit it, to the general Editor of the new series of "English Men of Letters," Mr. J. C. Squire, who, because of old admiration of Melville's genius, might very well have claimed the subject for his own pen instead of assisting mine. Reference has also been made to Some Personal Letters of Herman Mel