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(BEING THE FOURTH OF A NEW SERIES.)
LONDON: Printed by JOHN NICHOLS and SON,
where LETTERS are particularly requested to be sent, POST-PAID.
And sold by J. HARRIS (Successor to Mrs. NEWBERY),
ON COMPLETING THE FIRST PART OF VOL. LXXXI.
While War's rude din affrights the troubled deep,
When passions with temptations join,
When pining care and wasting pain
When crosses and vexations tease,
When horror chills my soul with fear,
Then may my mind be made to see
And when Affliction's fainting breath
FIRST PART OF THE EIGHTY-FIRST VOLUME.
ONCE more, and with cheerfulness, we enter upon the discharge of our periodical duty; and, with true sincerity, tender our humble tribute of respect and gratitude to our Friends and Correspondents. We may assert with honest pride, that the first are undiminished in number, and that the latter are far from being decreased either in value or importance.
Μήτοι τόγ' ἐμὸν πρόθυμον
We, on our part, shall continue our utmost exertions to prove how highly we estimate the place we have so long and so uniformly held in the public favour. If indeed any new stimulus were wanting, it seems to present itself in the form of certain anomalous Competitors, who, under the novel allurement of appearing only once a quarter, assert their claims to curiosity and attention. The World of Literature is large enough for us all; and we neither mean to dispute their equal right with ourselves to become Candidates for distinction and reward, nor by any means to depreciate the value of their labours. We wish modestly and perspicuously to state, for the information of such of our Readers as may be so situated as not precisely to understand the nature of the ground we differently occupy, the following, which we apprehend to be no unimportant Facts:
Our Monthly Publication exhibits a systematic History of Literature, in all its various branches: whereas our Brethren who make their appearance but four times in the year, selecting a few, for they cannot comprehend many, of such Works as they may think proper, make them the vehicle of ingenious comment and critical observation, of
political opinion and discussion, perhaps of political prejudice and party. That such may be consulted with benefit, and perused with satisfaction, we by no means pretend to deny ; nay further, we are prepared to pay them the willing tribute of praise, for much acute remark and learned disquisition. Our pretensions are of a different, and, let it be permitted us to add, of a more permanent nature: Their usefulness is more local and temporary; their materials for amusement, and information too, are necessarily more limited.
Our Volumes exhibit, and will continue to exhibit, a regu larly connected series of information on the Literature of our Country, its Politicks, Domestic History, Antiquities, Biography, and Poetry; a faithful and regular detail also of the Occurrences in Foreign Parts; and every other subject which can tend to make a miscellaneous Periodical Work productive of immediate gratification, or proper hereafter to be consulted as a faithful and authentic record.
Having said thus much, and we trust without offence, it is not possible to conclude without reverting, as we always do, to the condition of our beloved Country. Would that it were permitted us to congratulate our Fellow-Citizens on the early prospect of again cultivating without molestation the Peaceful Ólive! But the thirst for blood, which has so long tormented the infuriated Tyrant of the Continent, is not even yet satiated. But surely a brighter dawn may be discerned in the Political Hemisphere; it may be contemplated in the Laurel Wreaths which our gallant Countrymen have so gloriously, won at Busaco, Albuera, and on the Plains of Portugal: it may be hailed in the moral operation progressively taking its effect in the patriotic bosoms of our oppressed and persecuted Allies. May our hopes be prophetic! and when we shall next again bring ourselves before our Readers, may we have the delightful occasion presented to us, of cheering the return of Liberty to the ravaged and insulted Nations of Europe; and the sweet and grateful task of welcoming the wished-for return of British Heroes from fields of glory to mansions of tranquillity and peace, no more to be disturbed by the ruthless spirit of War and lawless Ambition!