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symmetry and succession, from the beginning of time, every thing material in every nation ; and exhibiting, in one view, that important scene, which alone can convey a clear idea of the universal situation, connexion, and order of things. We shall not, however, insist upon
the extent and importance of the subject, or the dexterity and extent of the Genius, that could handle it in so complete and concise a manner; that could so admirably combine sacred and profane things, the instruction of the head and the heart. But is it not matter of just surprize, that notwithstanding the deserved reputation of this master-piece hath brought it no less than thirteen different times to the press in its own and other countries, neither the excellence of the work, nor the fame of the writer, should have hitertherto excited our countrymen to promote the naturalization of so celebrated and valuble a foreigner? There was indeed an attempt made, above threescore years ago, to introduce this performance fuithfully Englished ; or ra
ther so disadvantageously metaphorphosed, that the original could no longer be known : which may serve to account for its so different reception in that disguise, from what it hath ever met with in its na. tive dress. Not only was the most elegant diction transformed into the most barbarous jargon, but the clearest, the finest sense mistaken, nay, made nonsense, in almost every page, or rather every paragraph. No wonder then if an English eye or ear turned away, with abhorrence, from what appeared so shocking; and if it well judged useless, what it found unintelligible.
In order therefore to vindicate the injured author from the false impressions that may have thus naturally been received of him ; in order to make him as well known, and consequently as much esteemed, in our country, as he is wherever else taste and learning reign ; in order to present to the public, what it hath so long wanted, a complete compendium of universal history, has this translation been undertaken.
The British youth will find in it the most useful classic of its kind; whether it is taught them, before they are capable of studying the large and learned volumes from whence it hath been digested; or whether it is read afterwards, for recapitu. lation; or, in fine, if it is substituted in their place : a classic, which the learned and judicious M. Rollin, the best schoolhistorian we have, but whose labours are swelled almost beyond the use of schools, hath done little else than paraphrased as a Text, nor been ashamed to own bis doing SO.
But as our author hath shown, that the usefulness of his work is not confined to the great, so may we venture to affirm, that every age and sex, as well as degree, may reap equal benefit from it. To youth it affords an entertaining instructer; to aye a faithful remembrancer; and to the unlearned, of whatever denomination, a complete system of universal knowledge, sacred and profane ; though composed for the use of the greatest prince in Europe,
adapted to the reach of the meanest subject.
It is an irreparable loss, that our matchless author did not live to perform his promise, of favouring the world with a second part, or a compendious synopsis of modern history, upon the same plan with the ancient. In order to remedy, in some small degree, so great a misfortune, some pretty eminent
abroad undertook the important design, and have actually brought it down to the year 1738.
But instead of imitating our Orator's concise method, and Laconic style, they swelled their continuation to above thrice the size of the work they continued, though in a period not much exceeding one sixth part of the time. We have therefore been prevailed with, to make an humble attempt towards a more compendious execution of the useful, but arduous task continued down to the present times : wherein it will be endeavoured to follow, as near as possible, (though at an infinite distance, and with unequal steps) our author's style and manner, his
order as well as accuracy, his conciseness as well as perspicuity. We hope, at least, to omit few memorable facts that belong to our period, and to situate each event in its proper point of time. But there must not be expected, in the second part, the same sublimity of thought and expression, the same happy turns and imperceptible transitions, the same lively and ingenious strokes, as in the first : for, besides that the nature of our subject and plan does not admit it, who can pretend to be a Bos