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TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE
: ONE OF THE REPRESENTATIVES IN PARLIAMENT OF
THE COUNTY OF YORK, &c. &c.
MY DEAR LORD,
WHEN under the sanction of
your Lordship's name I offer to the Public an edition of PLUTARCH's Lives of Illustrious Men, I am sensible that I place before them a melancholy series : of instances, in which virtue was referred for her sole recompence to the recollection of her achievements, or to the consciousness of her purposes. To the eye of the multitude, this may appear to throw over her an unnatural and a discouraging gloom. But you, my Lord, inherit the talent of appreciating her value by better tests, than that of her worldly brilliance. Allied by descent and
substituted by delegation to men, for whose integrity, public and private, future PLUTARCHş may be at a loss to discover parallels, you have early been led into studies and reflexions which, though they have given poignancy to your regret, have mitigated your surprise at the sad and frequent spectacle of proscribed patriotism. You have followed ARISTIDES in his exile from Athens, and Cato in his retreat to Utica--but why do I draw exclusively from antiquity examples of national ingratitude?-You have wept over the uncommemorated martyrdom of a De Witt, and have witnessed the calamitous abandonment, even by the people whom he loved and whom he served, of a Fox.
Undeterred by their fates, my Lord, may you ever continue emulous of their virtues! For yourself, politically characterised, I cannot utter a more comprehensive or
If I venture to express, a farther wish, that the principles of liberty, toleration, and economy, of which
you have already shown (and will, I doubt not, always show) yourself the able, undaunted, and incorruptible assertor, may become more
a loftier prayer.
popular than they have lately bèen, it is for my country.
I remain, my dear Lord,
with sentiments of the utinost regard and respect,
your Lordship's very faithful friend and servant,