Dear Christian Gauss:
You will sec how these essays have grown out of your lectures of fifteen years ago. But it is not merely on that account that I have felt I owe you a debt in connection with them. It was principally from you that I acquired then my idea of what literary criticism ought to be a history of man’s ideas and imaginings in the setting of the conditions which have shaped them. And though this book is only a very limited and a very incomplete attempt at that sort of history, I have wanted to dedicate it to you in acknowledgment of the fondness and instruction which, beginning when I was at college, have continued ever since, and as a tribute to a master of criticism who has taught much in insisting little.
Yours as ever,