Excerpt from The English Works of George Herbert, Vol. 2: Prose
That Herbert intended publication is evident from his words in the authour To the reader, dated 1632. Why the book remained so long un published is unknown. One might suppose the delay due to a belief that so vivid a picture of a punctilious priest would be unwelcome and unsal able at a season of Puritan domination. But the time of its unopposed and successful issue was the culmination of the Puritan triumph, three years after the execution of the King, and a year before Cromwell became Protector. Oley's long first Preface, devoted more to abuse of Puritanism than to description of Herbert, seems to have aroused no hostility. The causes of delay must, therefore, have been of a private nature.
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