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Gillian Avery, historian of children's books and novelist whose first book THE WARDEN'S NEICE has become a modern classic of children's literature, has made a very personal selection of favourite poems. If children like them as much as she does, then (she says) they will stay in the mind long after their readers have grown out of childhood. Her taste is for the Augustan rather than the Romantic writers, but her choice of over two hundred and fifty pieces ranges widely, from ballads to Ted Hughes, from Ben Jonson to Noel Coward. The illustrations are taken from the books of natural history made by Thomas Bewick, the celebrated English wood engraver.