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PREFACE.

1 He aid, which, it is hoped, may now be asserted to hare been given by the Cbnsura Literaria to thtj researches of the Literary Antiquary, prompted the present undertaking, with similar views. How fat it has yet attained its end, is more proper for the reader* than the Editor to peonounce. It may, however, be confidently said, that the First Volume contains a great tieal of recondite information, illustrative of British Bibliography } a study which isevery day growing more fashionable, and which, surely, is honourable to the liberal curiosity of a polished arid enlightened age.

Even within the last five years, we have seen this pursuit make a rapid progress. Books, which were before little regarded, except by a few black-letter collectors, have become objects of a wide interest; and the taste for knowledge of this kind, is at length far spread through, tbe kingdom. This has given encouragement to the Booksellers to repnnt the, major part of the old English. Chronicles;* and to put the rest in a state of forwardness ;f works, which were before almost inaccessible, and which form, in themselves, an historical library of high and. important value. The bqdy of the English PoetsJ

• Holinshed, Hal) and Grafton, are already printed j and other* in the press. To these is to be added, a reprint of the old translation of Froissart, by Lord Berners.

t Hackluyt's Voyages have been reprinted by Mr. Evans, of Pall-Vfall, who has, also, given a new edition ot his father's Collection of Ballads. Prince's Worthies of Devon have been reprinted by Bees, of Plymouth; anil Fuller's Worthies of England are in the press, under the care of an able Editor. Du^dale's Warwickshire, and Carew's Cornwall, are also reprinting. Bloomfield's. Norfolk is finished.

J Twenty-one Vols. large 8vo. in double columns, printed for tbe principal booksellers, 1810. It contains the chief poets, from Chaucer to Cowper, including al) of Dr. Johnson's edition; and tbe scarce Volumes of Gower, skrltun. Sum, Wyat, Gascoigne, J TrH"vil!?. Warner, Habington, Stirling, ic. &c.

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