WILLIAM HENRY HUDSON
The title of this little volume was chosen because it seems to indicate a characteristic possessed in common by the otherwise unrelated essays here brought together. They may all be described in a general way as holiday tasks—the results of many hours of quiet but rather aimless browsing among books, and not of special investigations, undertaken with a view to definite scholastic ends. They are, moreover, as will readily be seen, completely unacademic in style and intention. Three of the papers were originally put into shape as popular lectures. The remaining one—that on the Restoration novelists—was written for a magazine which appeals not to a special body of students, but to the more general reading public. The title, hit upon after some little searching, will, I believe, therefore be accepted as fairly descriptive, and will not, I hope, be condemned as overfanciful.