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date: 23 February 2020

(p. vii) Acknowledgements

(p. vii) Acknowledgements

We would express our sincere gratitude to Jacqueline Baker at OUP for proposing this volume to us and for supporting us attentively through the genesis and evolution of this magnum opus. Rachel Platt, Eleanor Collins, Megan Wakely, Susan Frampton, and Aimee Wright at OUP have all at different times guided us expertly through the preparation of this collection with unstinting courtesy and advice. To each of them, our thanks.

Naturally, a very significant debt of thanks in the preparation of this volume is owed to the contributors, who undertook original research for the benefit of the project and showed great scholarship, dedication, and patience in the several years between commissioning and publication. We express our warmest thanks to them all and trust that they, as well as the wider readership, will find the finished product informative, stimulating, and inspiring.

During much of the gestation period of this handbook, we were immensely supported by our colleague Linda Jones, whose calm professionalism and efficient copy-editing skills were of enormous benefit to contributors and editors alike. We are most grateful for her excellent work, and only regret that retirement prevented her from being able to help us to the very end of the project. We hope that she will be proud of the book and recognize in it the many improvements which she introduced.

We should like to thank our colleagues at Bangor University, especially those in the School of English Literature and the Library, for their support and encouragement to us during the preparation of this volume. In particular, we would mention our late colleague, Stephen Colclough, who was a willing adviser and a fund of invaluable information when asked to field questions on book history. In addition, we acknowledge the permission to reproduce images granted to us by libraries and other institutions, as listed on p. xiii and detailed in the relevant chapters.

Finally, it gives us great pleasure to express our heartfelt thanks to our families for their continued tolerance, generous flexibility, and enthusiastic helpfulness, without which a project such as this would simply be impossible. To our dear and ever-cheerful spouses, Siân and Allan: thank you.

AH & HW (p. viii)