In one of her final volumes, Beachy Head, with other Poems (1807), Charlotte Smith rewrites La Fontaine’s fable “The Two Pigeons” as “The Truant Dove from Pilpay.” To forestall criticism for “translating” a fable or for creating a talking bird, Smith calls upon several well-known literary names. Since her female dove “talks from Shakspeare,” she explains in her preface, “I must take refuge under the authority of Chaucer; or rather his polisher Dryden; who makes his Dame Partlet quote Galen and Cato, while Chanticleer explains Latin sentences.” 1 With these references, Smith displays the fact that she has read and learned from Dryden’s translation of Chaucer into modern English (he claimed to be Chaucer’s “polisher”), 2 while inviting her readers to consider her poetry in the same class as the works of these eminent male writers. 3