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CONSISTING PRINCIPALLY OP
Ertracts from Journals and other awritings
SOCIETY OF FRIENDS.
TO GEORGE, KING OF GREAT BRITAIN, IRE
LAND, &c. PRINCE ELECTOR OF BRUNSWICK
As there is great variety in the inclinations of men in general, so it is particularly remarkable in those who addict themselves to the studies of Nature and human Literature: for some with great eagerness enquire into the operations of nature and the natural causes of things ; some endeavour to dig up antiquities from the dark, by searching out the signification of statues, the inscriptions of antique stones, and old and almost worn out medals; and others peruse with unwearied diligence, the histories both of modern and ancient times, and not without good cause : for history is not unjustly called the looking-glass of human life; not only because it sheweth unto us the matters of fact, which are either commendable, or reprove able, and we behold therein that which is past, as if it were present; but also because from things which have already happened we may learu what is best for us to do, and what we ouglit to avoid. And tlierefore great benefit may be reaped from the reading of histories besides the pleasure which the variety of transactions affords to our senses, when matters are accompanied with singular circumstances and unexpected events.
Now since the reading of historical treatises