War Poetry of the South

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Title: War Poetry of the South
Author: Various
Release Date: August, 2005 [EBook #8648]
[Yes, we are more than
one year ahead of schedule]
[This file was first posted on July 29,
Edition: 10
Language: English
Character set encoding: ISO-8859-1

Produced by Distributed Proofreaders
Edited By
William Gilmore Simms, LL. D.
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1866,
In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the
Southern District of New York.
Press of Geo. C. Rand & Avery,
540 Broadway.
The Women of the South
I Inscribe This Volume
They have lost a cause, but they have made a triumph! They have
shown themselves worthy of any manhood; and will leave a record
which shall survive all the caprices of time. They have proved
themselves worthy of the best womanhood, and, in their posterity, will
leave no race which shall be unworthy of the cause which is lost, or of
the mothers, sisters and wives, who have taught such noble lessons of
virtuous effort, and womanly endurance.
Several considerations have prompted the editor of this volume in the
compilation of its pages. It constitutes a contribution to the national
literature which is assumed to be not unworthy of it, and which is
otherwise valuable as illustrating the degree of mental and art

development which has been made, in a large section of the country,
under circumstances greatly calculated to stimulate talent and provoke
expression, through the higher utterances of passion and imagination.
Though sectional in its character, and indicative of a temper and a
feeling which were in conflict with nationality, yet, now that the States
of the Union have been resolved into one nation, this collection is
essentially as much the property of the whole as are the captured
cannon which were employed against it during the progress of the late
war. It belongs to the national literature, and will hereafter be regarded
as constituting a proper part of it, just as legitimately to be recognized
by the nation as are the rival ballads of the cavaliers and roundheads,
by the English, in the great civil conflict of their country.
The emotional literature of a people is as necessary to the philosophical
historian as the mere details of events in the progress of a nation. This
is essential to the reputation of the Southern people, as illustrating their
feelings, sentiments, ideas, and opinions--the motives which influenced
their actions, and the objects which they had in contemplation, and
which seemed to them to justify the struggle in which they were
engaged. It shows with what spirit the popular mind regarded the
course of events, whether favorable or adverse; and, in this aspect, it is
even of more importance to the writer of history than any mere
chronicle of facts. The mere facts in a history do not always, or often,
indicate the true animus, of the action. But, in poetry and song, the
emotional nature is apt to declare itself without reserve--speaking out
with a passion which disdains subterfuge, and through media of
imagination and fancy, which are not only without reserve, but which
are too coercive in their own nature, too arbitrary in their influence, to
acknowledge any restraints upon that expression, which glows or
weeps with emotions that gush freely and freshly from the heart. With
this persuasion, we can also forgive the muse who, in her fervor, is
sometimes forgetful of her art.
And yet, it is believed that the numerous pieces of this volume will be
found creditable to the genius and culture of the Southern people, and
honorable, as in accordance with their convictions. They are derived
from all the States of the late Southern Confederacy, and will be found

truthfully to
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