Status: Complete


in my most secret thoughts, on which side
the scale will preponderate. I cannot dissemble
that six ample quartos must
have tried, and may have exhusted,
the indulgence of the Public; that, in
the repetition of similar attempts, a
successful Author has much more to
lose, than he can hope to gainl that I
am now descending into the vale of
years; and that the most respectable of
my countrymen, the men whom I
aspire to imitate, have resigned the pen
of histore about the same period of
their lives. Yet I consider that the annals
of ancient and modern times may afford
many rich and interesting subjects; that
I am still possessed of health and leisurel
that by the practice of writing, some
skill and facility must be acquiredl and
that in the ardent pusuit of truth and
knowledge, I am not conscious of
decay. To an active mind, indolence
is more painful than labourl and the
first months of my liberty will be oc-

a 3

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