With twenty two letters, addressed to various already deceased authors, Andrew Lang discusses literary subjects with his usual humour and acidity. The impulse for the writing of the letters came, almost as a joke, from the editor of the 'St. James's Gazette,' and sixteen of the letters collected in the volume appeared first in that journal. According to the author, "some of the Letters are written rather to suit the Correspondent than to express the writer's own taste or opinions"; in all of them, though, the reader will find the charming wit of their author.
Quite a range of parodies- each 'letter' is written in the style of the author addressed- from Herodotus to Lord Byron, including Ronsard, Izaak Walton, Edgar Allen Poe, and Jane Austen.
To W.M. Thackeray -- To Charles Dickens -- To Piere de Ronsard -- To Herodotus -- Epistle to Mr. Alexander Pope -- To Lucian of Samosata -- To Maître Françoys Rabelais -- To Jane Austen -- To Master Isaak Walton -- To M. Chapelain -- To Sir John Manndeville, Kt. -- To Alexandre Dumas -- To Theocritus -- To Edgar Allan Poe -- To Sir Walter Scott, Bart. -- To Eusebius of Caesarea -- To Percy Bysshe Shelley -- To Monsieur de Molière, valet de chambre du roi -- To Robert Burns -- To Lord Byron -- To Omar Khayyám -- To Q. Hortatius Flaccus.