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FIRST LORD COMMISSIONER OF HIS MAJESTY'S TREASURY,
&c. &c. &c.
MY DEAR SIR,
INDEBTED to your affectionate Partiality 1 for the Situation which has led to the Production of these Volumes, I trust you will accept them as some Proof of my anxiety to fulfil, as far as I am able, its important Duties. But you must permit me, Sir, to say, that I consider the Dedication of a Work designed to promote the knowledge of the Sacred Scriptures, and to explain the Doctrines of the Church of England, as peculiarly appropriate to You, who have evinced yourself the zealous Friend of Religion, and the firm Supporter of our Ecclesiastical Establishment; who have stood forward as the uniform and successful
Opponent of Principles which aimed at the Extinction of Christianity, and of a Power which threatened to deprive the World of every Religious and Social Comfort. To your Energy and Wisdom, under the Blessing of Divine Providence, this Country owes its present State of unexampled Prosperity and Glory, and all Europe the Hope of being rescued from the Evils of Tyranny and Atheism. But your Talents and Public Measures as a Statesman, I leave to the future Historian of this eventful Period ; nor will I attempt to describe that Eloquence, which is acknowledged to be unequalled both in ancient and modern times. The connexion which subsisted between us in an early part of your Life, and the uninterrupted Confidence with which you have since honoured me, may, perhaps, justify me in bearing testimony to those Qualities which adorn and dignify your private Character. Having enjoyed the singular Felicity of watching the Progress of your unrivalled Abilities, I may be allowed to declare, that the unremitting Assiduity · with which you early acquired a Depth and Variety of Learning rarely attained even
by those who devote their whole lives to literary pursuits, was as remarkable as the Fire of that Genius, and the Accuracy of that Judgment, which astonish the World by their promptitude, acuteness, and extent; and having long witnessed the daily habits of your Life, I may be permitted to mention the Excellence of your Temper and Disposition, which I have ever considered to be no less extraordinary than the Powers of your Mind : But above all, I may state with inexpressible Satisfaction, that under the influence of Religious Principle, your Conduct has afforded an eminent Example of private as well as of public Virtue, and that you have preserved an Integrity of Heart and a Purity of Mind unshaken and unsullied by the Trials and Temptations of the most exalted Stationof a Station obtained at an Age of which there is no example, and maintained with uniform Dignity, through a Succession of Difficulties as singular in their Nature as alarming in their Tendency.
Pardon me, Sir, for addressing you in Language, which, though dictated by