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I KNOW not to whom the Saunterer can be with so
much propriety dedicated as to one who has enforced its precepts by his life and conversation. To you, indeed, I have more particular inducements for addressing this trifling testimony of respect. I cannot refil that warmth by which I am impelled to acknowledge the instructor of my infant mind, the guardian of my fame, and the friend and patron of my literary labours. To you I have been indebted for allistance and correction in the pro. gress of my work, and for a munificent reward of that attention by which I have concluded it. From your ge. nerosity I have reason to expect that independence of fortune which may enable me to defpise, in fecurity, the in. folence of wealth and the pride of ignorance.
When I thus address myself to you, I labour, indeed, under no common difficulties. That energy of thought and splendour of genius, by which you are so eminently distinguished, are so much graced by that modesty which is always the attendant on extraordinary merit, that I am obliged to restrain ihat ardour with which the contemplation of your talents and virtues has inspired me. I know A 2
that if I wish to preserve your patronage I must repress my enthusiasm, and admire in silence.
I cannot conclude without expressing my belief that you will judge of the SAUNTERER with your accustomed kind. ness. I have no doubt, indeed, (though my opinion may appear too vain,) that you will find in it much to admire, and little to condemn; that you will praise its beauties without unwillingness, and censure only when censure is necessary. Should the little bark which I have now vet. tured upon the stream of time, be wafted by the gale of favour to future ages, the praise of its success must be long to you.
HEWSON CLARKE. June 30, 1805.
M A NY of the following essays were first
M given to the world through the medium of the Tyne Mercury. The approbation with which they were received has induced me to revise the renaining numbers, and to publish them collectively.
For all the papers, except those signed X. I.must be responsible. I have been indebted for the latter, which forın perhaps the most valuable part of this volume, to a gentleman whose name and talents would do honour to any undertaking. The criticisms on Master Betty, though not consistent with the original plan, are inserted by the desire of their former readers. I have translated all the mottoes,