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Ꮲ E F A C E.

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AVING now arrived at the conclusion of our

Twentieth Volume, we should have been dis-
posed to have celebrated this year as a sort of jubilee,
and season of self-congratulation, if the awful
aspect of the times had not forbidden every emotion
bordering upon levity, and afforded matter of the
most serious consideration and reflection to every
member of the community. No circumstance of
time, nor state of affairs, can, however, repress our
gratitude, or restrain our acknowledgements to the
Publick, for that continued favour, which, as it
has during so many years, constantly increased with
our labours, so it has alone enabled us to encounter
the arduous task of appearing annually before them
in so many successive publications, upon each of
which, their former esteem, and future approba-
tion, were, of course, in some degree hazarded.

The importance and magnitude of our historical
business have unhappily risen to nearly the highest
pitch at which they seem capable of arriving. We
relate events, in which every member of this wide
and divided empire is deeply interested ; in which
many thousands are immediately and personally con-
cerned; and wherein its best blood is too copiously
shed. The incidents are numberless, and the par-
ties concerned in every incident numerous.

It is


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