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"Hence X, Bing Alfred, gathered these together, and commanded many of those to be written down which our forefathers obserbed—those which # liked,
and those which X did not like, by the advice of my Witan X threw aside. For X durst not venture to set down in writing over many of my own, since # knew not what among them would please those who should come after us. But those which ¥ met with either of the days of me, my kinsman, or of Offa, king of Meccia, or of Alethelbecht, who was the first of the English who received baptism,—those which appeared to me the sustest, habe here collected, and abandoned the others. Then #, Alfred, king of the West Sapons, showed these to all my witan, and they then said that they were all willing to observe them.”
LAWS OF ALFRED,
(Not yet published.)
Masters," quoth the cardinal, “ unless it be the manner of your house, as of likelihood it is, by the mouth of your Speaker whom you have chosen for trusty and wise (as indeed he is), in such cases to utter your minds, here is without doubt a marvellous silence;" and thereupon he required answer of master Speaker. Who first reverently on his knees excusing the silence of the house, abashed at the presence of so noble a personage able to amaze the wisest and best learned in a realm, and after by many probable arguments proving that for them to make answer was neither expedient nor agreeable with the ancient liberty of the house; in conclusion for himself showed that though they had all with their voices trusted him, yet except every one of them could put into his one head all their several wits, he alone in so weighty a matter was unmeet to make his grace answer. Whereupon the cardinal, displeased with Sir Thomas More, that had not in this parliament in all things satisfied his desire, suddenly arose and departed.”
Roper's Life of Sir Thomas More.
SIR JAMES MACKINTOSH.
The following volume is a part of an experiment to ascertain how far the most necessary portions of historical knowledge may, even in an abridged narrative, be rendered acceptable to general readers. Neither my habitual relish for English history, nor the hazardous honor of acting with such fellow-laborers, has blinded me to the difficulties of the attempt, which experience has shown to be more considerable than I apprehended they would prove. I need not compare the convenience of abridgment with the merits of circumstantial recital : both these sorts of historical composition have their use, and they must both always continue to be written.
On behalf of such sketches, I may venture to take it for granted that an outline may be useful as an introduction, and convenient as a remembrancer; that it is a particularly accessible manual for reference; and that it may contain all the information concerning the affairs of one people, which men of different pursuits, of little leisure, or of other countries, may think it necessary to have always within their reach.
The object at which I have aimed is, to lay before the reader a summary of the most memorable events in English history, in regular succession, together with an exposition of the nature and progress of our political institutions, clear enough for educated and thinking men, with as little reasoning or reflection as the latter part of the object to which I have just adverted will allow, and with no more than that occasional particularity which may be needed to characterize an age or nation—to lay open the workings of the minds who have guided their fellow-menand, most of all, to strengthen the moral sentiments by the exercise of them on all the personages conspicuous in history.
I am fearful that I shall be thought to have said too much for one class of readers, and too little for another, on the history of our government and laws. I can only offer in excuse, that the characteristic quality of English history is, that it stands alone as the history of the progress of a great people towards liberty during six centuries; that it does not appear reasonable to lose sight of this extraordinary distinction, in any account of it, however compressed ; that the statement offered here, short as it must be, may much facilitate the right understanding of more recent controversies and changes; and, lastly, that a writer, however much he is to curb his peculiarities and guard against his most frequent faults, must at the same time bear in mind that there are some parts of every extensive subject for which nature and habit have less unfitted him than for others.
If in this case I have indulged my own taste too much while walking on a path by me before untrodden, I may reasonably hope that experience will enable me to avoid that excess in the sequel of my undertaking.
It is now apparent that the work cannot be confined within the limits first announced to the public. How far it may be found necessary to extend them, is a matter on which it will require the experience of at least another volume, to warrant me in venturing publicly on a more specific declaration.
ADVERTISEMENT OF DR. LARDNER.
SIR JAMES MACKINTOSH had proceeded to the 392d page of the first volume of his “ History of England,” when literature and his country were deprived of him by his lamented death. His manuscript breaks off with the section ending at the last line of the first column of the above-mentioned page in the presen volume.
The History will be continued with an entire concurrence in Sir James Mackintosh's developed principles and views : at the same time, with a full sense of the continuator's disadvantages, in coming after one whose capacity and reputation placed him so high. It will, however, be the study of the continuator to pursue
the course of events with the same disposition to vindicate and advance the principles of religious and political freedom, promote civilization, and cultivate the sentiments of humanity, which have distinguished his predecessor.
The various manuscripts and memoranda left by Sir James. Mackintosh relating to English history, among which may be especially mentioned a view of English affairs at the time of the Revolution of 1688, have been purchased by the proprietors of the Cyclopædia, and will be used as occasion shall require in the progress of the work.
ANALYTICAL AND CHRONOLOGICAL TABLE
THE HISTORY OF ENGLAND.
A.D. B. C.
Page 130. Under Antoninus, another Wall is built State of Europe as described by the Ro.
18 man Writers towards the Decline of the
Slow Progress of the Roman Arms: the Empire ; Gauls or Celts; their original
general Policy of the Empire is that of Abodes; their Irruptions into Greece,
Augustus, who disapproved remote Con-
ib. Mixture and Confusion of Races in the
Nature of the Roman Government in Population of Greece and Italy; Phoe
19 nician Colonies in the Mediterranean ib. Government of Towns: Origin of modern Formation of mixed Languages by inter
ib. course between the Conquerors and the 367. The Empire declines, and Troops are conquered; Hindustanee and Anglo
withdrawn from Britain to protect the Norman striking Illustrations at op
Seats of Dominion.
20 posite Extremities of the Earth... ... 12 About the Middle of the Fifth Century, Distinction between the Term Race, as
the Island is abandoned........
ib. enıployed by Historians and by Natural. 446. On the Loss of Roman Protection, the ists..
Britons employ Saxons and other MerSubdivision of the Celtic Race, Gauli, and
cenaries in their Defence against the Cimbri...
barbarous Tribes of their own Island: Teutonic or Germanic Race; contrasted
these gradually rose to be Conquerors Character of the Gauls and Germans;
more formidable than those they were the Gauls somewhat civilized, but ab
called in to combat...
ib. jectly servile and superstitious; the
But the insular Position of England ren. Germans more rude, but of independent
dered their Progress very slow........
ib. Spirit: that Spirit qualified them to lay
Armorica (since called Britanny); Source the Foundation of a better ordered Civ
of its early Connexion with Britain : ilization than that of the Ancient or
through that Connexion the legendary Eastern World..
Tales of Britain were communicated The Sources of these Varieties of Charac
to the Continent: King Arthur...... 21 ter in neighboring Races are hitherto
The limited Value of our early Tradiunexplained, though late Inquiries af.
tions, as compared with the classical, ford some Promise of Success......... 14
arises from their Transmission through
a Medium not purely national, that of CHAP. I.
Monks of foreign Origin and Studies, BRITISA AND ROMAN PERIOD, TO 500 A. D.
and Minstrels who implicitly followed them...
ib. A People of Celtic Race, probably the first Inhabitants of Britain; Gauls probably
CHAP. II. the first Colonists,..
ANGLO-SAXON PERIOD. The Phoenicians and Massilians traded in the Tin of Cornwall...
ib. Peculiar Circumstances which contribute 55. Julius Cæsar lands in Britain : he retires
to render Britain the natural Seat of in consequence of an Accident to his
ib. The general Movement of the pastoral 54. He renews the Invasion, and defeats Cas
Tribes originated in that of the Huns sivelaunus, who becomes tributary.... ib.
from the North of the Wall of China to The Tribes which peopled Britain very
ib. numerous: those of the Interior ex.
Successive Pulsations of this Movement tremely barbarous: their Government
through other Tribes..
ib. A.D. unformed and fluctuating...
16 Slow Progress of the Saxons in the Inva36. Caligula threatens Britain
; but ends by
sion of Britain... the insane Freak of loading his Troops 457- Establishment of the Jutes in Kent, and with Shells.........
of the South Saxons on the Borders of 43. Claudius seriously undertakes the Enter
23 prise: his Generals employ Seven Years 519. Successes of Cerdic, at the Head of the in reducing the Country south of the
West Saxons, against the West Britons ib. Thames.
ib. 547. Principalities of Deira and Bernicia, 50. Ostorius encounters the Silures of South
formed by the Angles in the North.... ib.
ib 59. Suetonius Paulinus attacks the sacred 596. St. Augustine and forty other Missiona. Seat of Druidism in Mona or Anglesey:
ries sent by Pope Gregory to convert he is called off by an Insurrection : Bo
the Saxons: they found both the Chrisadicea: dreadful Slaughter of the Britons ib. tian Religion and the British Language 71. Agricola, Governor of Britain under Ves
extinct in the Saxon Territory... pasian; carries the Roman Arms to
Miracles ascribed to St. Augustine: misScotland : joins by fortified Posts the
taken, but honest Enthusiasm may acFriths of Forth and Clyde; circum
count for many Pretensions ascribed to navigates the Island.
ib. 120. Under Adrian, a second Wall is built from
Ascendency of one Saxon State over the the Solway to the Mouth of the Tyne.. ib. rest: Authority of Bretwalda; (800) Eg.