Should the following pages prove fortunate enough to be favourably received by the public, they will owe it entirely to their subject-matter.
To this, and not to vigour of language or lucidity of style, must be attributed whatever interest they may possess. The Author makes no pretensions to the character of a practised writer and feels that the subject is worthy of a more able and experienced hand; he therefore ventures to solicit the indulgence he so sorely needs for his literary short‐ comings, of which no one can feel more conscious than himself. On the other hand, he boldly and frankly claims for his work the merit of perfect and impartial truthfulness; and, in the words of Montaigne, he conscientiously asserts, with perhaps justifiable pride: “C’est icy un livre de bonne foy, lecteur.”
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