THE Publisher begs leave to acquaint his Subscribers,

that the future Numbers of this Edition will be enric hed

with some hitherto unpublished Sermons of Dr. Barrow.

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In the life of a scholar who has escaped the trammels of public employment, and shunned the turbulence of party faction, it cannot be expected that very numerous incidents should be found, to exercise the writer's judgment, or excite the reader's curiosity : yet neither of them will have reason to complain, provided the excellence of the subject compensates for the deficience of interest, and the spirit of emulation can be awakened, though curiosity may remain unsatisfied ; in short, if they be led, as in the present instance, to the retrospect of splendid talents, great learning, and various acquirements, uniformly exerted in the cause of virtue and for the good of society. It is matter of surprise that some such considerations as these should never have induced any one, qualified for the undertaking, to collect more extensive information, and to compose a more complete biography, than has yet appeared, of the illustrious person who is the subject of our present memoir : the task was strongly recommended, soon after




his decease, by those who best knew his worth ; but their suggestions were unheeded, until his contemporaries followed him to the silent grave; and little is known of Isaac Barrow beyond what is contained in a slight sketch drawn up by one of his executors,* and prefixed to the first edition of his works : fortunately however his own writings, particularly those whose Latin dress has too long kept them from general investigation, contain much accurate and authentic information respecting their author, furnishing us with as clear an insight into his character, as those of any writer who has not expressly left memorials of his own life. On these genuine and important documents therefore, aided by some additional information collected in a general course of reading, the Editor must rely, whilst he endeavors to do more justice than bas hitherto been done, to one of the greatest names that adorn our annals.

At a very eventful period, when the political horizon began to darken with those storms which shook the foundation both of church and state, this great man was born in the metropolis, in the month of October, 1630.+ He

* Abraham Hill, Esq. Dr. Ward added some new details, and corrected some errors : see the biography of Barrow, in his Lives of the Professors of Gresham College. The short account introduced by Dr. Pope into his life of the Bishop of Salisbury is to be received with some caution.

+ This is Mr. A. Hill's account. Dr. Pope in his life of Seth, Lord Bishop of Salisbury, p. 129, says that this date is not right; for he had often beard Dr. Barrow himself say, that he was born on the 29th of February, which could not be in 1630, that not being a Jeap-year: the college register however of Peter House, where he was entered as annum agens decimum quartum, shows that Mr. Hillis not far from the truth at any rate. See Ward's Lives, p. 157.

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