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OFFICE, BREAM'S BUILDINGS, CHANCERY LANE, E.C.
V. 109-10 A TENTH SERIES is now complete, not inferior, the Editor hopes and believes, in its varied interest and erudition, to its long line of predecessors. It cannot, alas ! be introduced by the well-loved hand which for many years added an easy and inimitable grace to the fruits of long experience. In his Preface to the Ninth Series, Joseph Knight spoke of the confidence with which his successors would rely on “the cultivated and affectionate support” which has made ‘N. & Q.' what it is.
That confidence has been fully justified, and the present Editor has once more to call attention to the variety and accessibility of the matter to which the present publication forms a key. Index-making has not, as a whole, improved of late years; but it was felt that any such laxity here would be unworthy, and the Indexes have been the subject of unremitting care and attention.
Self-praise would seem to-day to be one of the most valuable of recommendations ; but the contributors to N. & Q.' have never sought for that recognition which their unselfish labours deserve. How wide and lucrative their work is the expert knows, and it would be easy to multiply instances of grateful recognition from all parts of the Empire. Only the other day we received a letter from India speaking of the kind help essential to those who “ have to work away from any big libraries."
Of the great schemes in which it has been our pleasure and privilege to partake, the English Dialect Dictionary' is complete; but we anticipate further additions to that remarkable monument of fine scholarship, the Dictionary of National Biography. Meanwhile, Sir James Murray's great English Dictionary has, in spite of numerous difficulties and the loss of many valuable adherents, been proceeding with a regularity which demands the unstinted admiration of those who know.
Each new Series brings us the sorrow of regretting many old and constant friends, but scholarship never dies, while the curiosity of humanity is inexhaustible. We welcome new friends who are animated with the same zeal as their predecessors. Two features of the present age are the advance of folk-lore—a science which must always be associated with our first Editor-and a revival of interest in history and memoirs. In both these departments of knowledge, as in many others, NOTES AND QUERIES has played an important part—increasingly important, indeed, because the new generation of writers and readers needs more guidance than the old. The democracy now seeks knowledge and instruction, and the time has gone when a man can stand over his learning and warn people off, as the wittiest of English judges said, like an old gentleman guarding his luggage at a crowded railway station.
The ungrudging and enthusiastic band of contributors to NOTES AND QUERIES realize to the full this disinterested view of knowledge, and the Editor looks forward with pleasure to an unabated interest among his friends and contributors in that work which is in itself a delight.
VERNON RENDALL. 11, Bream's Buildings, Chancery Lane, E.C., December, 1910.