Books: Bard of Erin

THE HARP THAT ONCE—Howard Mumford Jones—Holt ($3.50).

THE MINSTREL BOY—L. A. G. Strong— Knopf ($3.75). The middle half of the 18th Century, in Europe, was a kind of waiting time. Artistically an awkward bridge between classicism and the fierce romantics, politically a feudal afternoon of dying magnificence, it was a Golden Age gone tinsel without anyone quite realizing the change. Good and bad, wealth and poverty, freedom and tyranny seemed to have struck a permanent balance. It was a time of elaborate facades and filthy backstreets, of nearsighted perceptions and long-range emotions. If a...