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a complete and distinct form to his sketches, without partially treading in the footsteps of other writers : in those instances, however, where he has been compelled to make use of the same materials, his researches, whenever it was practicable, have been extended to the fountain-head.

The author now ventures to put forth the present volumes as a portion only of his labours. Should others agree with him in thinking that a work like the present has, in any degree, supplied a desideratum in our literature, he will consider himself fully repaid for the trouble it has cost him; at the same time, he is free to confess that he would have been as well pleased, had the task fallen into abler hands.

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