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05 THE

LIFE AND WRITINGS

OF

EDWARD GIBBON, ESQ.

COMPOSED BY HIMSELF,

AND ILLUSTRATED BY AND FROM HIS LETTERS AND

JOURNAL;

WITH OCCASIONAL NOTES AND NARRATIVE

BY THE RIGHT HONOURABLE

JOHN LORD SHEFFIELD.

IN TWO VOLUMES.

VOL. I.

LONDON: HIITAKER, TREACHER, AND ARNOT,

AVE-MARIA-LANE.

MDCCCXXX.

Vef? - 9 - OID

INTRODUCTION.

The Editors of the AUTOBIOGRAPHY feel little explanation necessary in regard to their motives for an early publication, in this series, of the very interesting Memoirs of the celebrated author of the . History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire.' Setting aside the great literary fame of Gibbon, the manner in which he has recorded the events of his life, and marked the formation of his character as a man and as a writer, has been deservedly regarded as in the highest degree both instructive and engaging. Assuming the most fascinating form of autobiography, the reader is conducted through all the stages of the life of a man of genius by himself; and that with a candour and an ingenuousness as rare as they are agreeable. Until the present republication, the Memoirs of this eloquent and philosophical historian have been included in the collection of his Miscellane.

ous Works, the price of which is considerable ; 80 that this edition possesses not only the advantage of the cheapness of the adopted mode of publication, but that of being obtainable without the purchase of matter with which it has no necessary connection. In the meantime, moved by the same reasons which induced lord Sheffield to point and illustrate the Memoirs of his eminent friend, by a selection from his correspondence, the Editors of the Autobiography have been led to retain the same epistolary selection in the way of appendix, with the exception of a few letters which, although acceptable in the eagerness to acquire whatever is connected with a great man, are not of a nature to excite a lasting interest. Thus slightly reduced, the present two volumes will contain not only the entire Memoirs of Gibbon, and the Appendix of lord Sheffield connected with them, but every particular of the correspondence supplied by that nobleman, which in a biographical sense is illustrative or essential,

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