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Old 04-11-2011, 07:08 AM   #1
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Buchanan, Robert: Camlan and The Shadow of the Sword. V1. 11 Apr 2011

Robert Williams Buchanan (18 August 1841 – 10 June 1901) was a Scottish poet, novelist and dramatist. He was the son of Robert Buchanan (1813-1866), Owenite lecturer and journalist, and was born at Caverswall, Staffordshire, England. Buchanan senior, a native of Ayr, Scotland, lived for some years in Manchester, then moved to Glasgow, where Buchanan junior was educated, at the high school and the university, one of his fellow-students being the poet David Gray. His essay on Gray, originally published in the Cornhill Magazine, tells the story of their close friendship, and of their journey to London in 1860 in search of fame.

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"The Shadow of the Sword" is a polemic against War, against the institution which, above all others, is the disgrace and scourge of modern civilization. But what am I saying? I write this preface in the near neighbourhood of Shoeburyness, where our English artillerymen have been recently experimenting, at the expense of the public pocket and of the town windows, with the new 80-ton gun. I forget exactly how many pounds sterling every discharge of this cheerful invention costs the people of England, or how much they are mulcted for the experimental cannonade which takes place daily at Shoeburyness and other havens of unrest, made hideous for us by a quasi-military government.
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