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PUBLISHED BY JOHN HATCHARD, BOOKSELLER TO HER MAJESTY, 190, PICCADILLY;
IN LONDON, BY Seeley, fleet STREET; AND sherwood, NEELY, AND JONES,
AND BY ALL OTHER BOOKSELLERS, AND BY THE NEWSMEN,
THE sixteenth year of our labours is now brought to a close. At its commencement, our political horizon was overhung with clouds and darkness, and the hearts of the wise and good were filled with fearful presages of an approaching storm. Abroad, indeed, all was peace; but at home, the agitation and the alarm were great. The particular dangers, however, which then threatened us, have happily been averted, and a new year has opened with brighter prospects. This improvement, both in the state of our affairs and in the temper of a great part of the community, whatever may have been the secondary causes, we must ascribe to Him alone who has the hearts of all men in his hands, and who in the midst of judgment still remembers mercy.
The Almighty, indeed, has not withheld from us the chastisement which our sins have deserved, but has visited us with evident marks of his displeasure. He has smitten us in a tender part; and the stroke has been felt in the heart of every individual in the land-from him who sways the sceptre of this mighty empire, to the meanest of his subjects. May the dispensation prove as salutary as it has been severe; and may the repentance and reformation to which it calls us be as comprehensive in their range as the grief which it has produced!
The present year has been further distinguished as the Third Centenary of the Protestant Reformation. The point, therefore, at which we have arrived seems to justify us in recurring to the principles which gave birth to that mighty event, with the view of ascertaining whether those principles are still maintained in their strength and integrity by the Members of our Protestant Church.
We have great reason to bless God, that during the last twenty years the influence of those just views of Christian