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It is a very serious undertaking to produce a book which shall set forth to the English of the twentieth century the books which King Alfred translated or set others to translate from the Latin for his English subjects in the ninth century. Those books are in the early English of the ninth century, and so are not intelligible for the English of to-day. It is worth while to attempt to put their matter and their manner before the present generation of English-speaking folk, to whom the history and the personality of King Alfred, so far as they know it, has a romantic appeal. There have been two anniversaries in the memory of the older men now living, which have called special attention to the life and work of the King. The first was the thousandth anniversary of his birth, which came in 1849, the other the thousandth anniversary of his death, in 1901. On each of these occasions, a main part of the celebration centred round his literary work. In each case it was agreed that some publication should be undertaken, to inform and interest the English-speaking people of the time in the great things he did for the people of his far-off time.