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VOL. ii.





Appendix. A.

Trifling and insignificant as every thing connected with the politics of so small and so miserable a country as Iceland must necessarily appear, when contrasted with the events that are agitating the great powers of Europe, nevertheless, as the government of this island underwent a total change during the short time of my residence in it, I feel, not only that my journal would be incomplete were I to pass over such things in silence, but also that it may reasonably be required of me to give an account of transactions, which fell under my own observation, and of which, as a mere by-stander, I may be expected to speak with more impartiality than those who were actively engaged in them. I shall therefore endeavor to do it as plainly and succinctly as possible, trusting that, unimportant as are the events to be detailed in my narrative, they may not on that account be wholly devoid of interest, but may find some shelter under the old adage, that (* inest sua gratia parvis." From one error, at least, that is but too common to writers of all descriptions, whatever be their subject, I flatter myself I shall be allowed to have steered clear, that of magnifying occurrences, so as to exemplify the fable of the mountain in labor; for the very reverse is my case, and I ought, perhaps, rather to dread the having fallen into the opposite extreme; as my inclinations, as well as my feelings, would have led me to have confined myself principally to the leading objects of myvoyage, the natural historyof the island and the manners and customs of the inhabitants, could I but have persuaded myself that I could have done so with propriety. Having, as just observed, taken no part whatever in politics, and having frequently been engaged

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