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served reputation of this masterpiece bath brought it no less than thirteen different times to the press in its own and other countries, neither the excellence of the work, nor the fame of the writer, Mould have hitherto excited our countrymen to promote the naturalization of fo celebrated and valuable a foreigner ? There was indeed an attempt made, above threescare years ago, to introduce this performance faithfully englished; or rather so disadvantageously metamorphosed, that the original could no longer be known : which may serve to account for its so different reception in that difguife, from what it bath ever met with in its native dress. Not only was the most elegant di&tion transformed into the most barbarous jargon, but the cleareft, the finest senfe mistaken, nay, made nonsense; in almost every page, or rather every paragraph. No wonder then if an
English eye or ear turned away, with abhorrence, from what appeared to shocking ; and if it well judged useless, what it found unintelligible.
In order therefore to vindicate the injured author from the false impresions that may have thus naturally been received of him; in order to make him as well known, and consequently as much esteemed, in our country, as he is wherever else taste and learning reign; in order to present to the public, what it hath so long wanted, a complete compendium of universal history, kas this translation been undertaken.
The British youth will find in it the most useful closic of its kind; whether it is taught them, before they are capable of studying the large and learned volumes from whence it hath been digested; or whether it is read afterwards, for recapitulation ; or, in fine, if it is
fubftituted in their place : a claffic, which the learned and judicious M. Rollin, the best school-bistorian we bave, but whose labours are swelled almost beyond the use of schools, hath done little else than paraphrased as a Text, nor been ashamed to own his doing so.
But as our author hath Mewn, that the usefulness of bis work is not confined to the great, so may we venture to affirm, that every age and sex, as well as degree, may reap equal benefit from it. To youth it affords an entertaining instructor ; to age a faithful remembrancer; and to the unlearned, of whatever denomination, a complete System of universal knowledge, sacred and profane; though composed for the use of the greatest prince in Europe, adapted to the reach of the meanejt Jubject.
It is an irreparable lofs, that our matchless authur did not live to per
form bis promise, of favouring the wirld with a second part, or a compendious Synophis of modern history, upon the same plan with the ancient. In order to remedy, in some Small degree, so great a misfortune, fome pretty eminent pens abroad undertook the important design, and have actually brought it down to the year 1738. But instead of imitating our Orator's concise method, and Laconic style, they fwelled their .continuation to above thrice the fize of the work they continued, though in a period not much exceeding one fixth part of the time. We have therefore been prevailed with; to make an humble attempt towards a more compendious execution of the useful, but arduous task continued down to the present times : wherein it will be endeavoured to follow, as near as posible, (though at an infinite distance, and with unequal Steps) our author's style and manner,
bis order as well as accuracy, bis conciseness as well as perspicuity. We hope, at least, to omit few memorable facts that belong to our period, and to ftuate each event in its proper point of time. But there must not be expected, in the second part, the same sublimity of thought and expreson, the fame bappy turns and imperceptible" tranptions, the Same lively and ingenious strokes, as in the first: for, besides that the nature of our subječt and plan does not admit it, who can pretend to be A BOSSUET?