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The Northern part of this Virginia, being better discovered than the other, is called New ENGLAND: full of good new Towns and Forts, and is likely to prove a happy Plantation.

HEYLIN, Microcosmos, 8th edit. 4to, Oxford, 1639.




THIS volume is in one sense a Second Edition of a - Tract which was printed in 1849, entitled · Collections concerning the early History of the Founders of New Plymouth, the first Colonists of New England.'

That Tract formed No. II of a Series of Critical and Historical Treatises, of which four numbers only have appeared.

The place was then for the first time identified, at which these Founders met as a Separatist Church

they took the resolution of removing to Holland, from whence in a few years they passed to the shores of North America.

This point being determined, the way was opened to the discovery of some other new facts respecting the leaders and chief agents in the movement, and to the establishment from evidence at home of statements in certain historical and biographical writings which have been published in the new country.

They related especially to Bradford and Brewster, the most eminent of the lay-members of this Church or community of English Separatists.

The new facts which were brought to light, it is hardly too much to say, have changed the face of the


whole history of the movement, as long as the actors in it remained in England, the period on which only I professed to write. The tract has contributed also to revive and deepen the interest which has been always more or less felt about these founders of the North American civilization. It has indeed done more than I could possibly have anticipated, both at home and in New England.

At home I have found the new facts eagerly accepted and reproduced: and in New England I have been requested by the Massachusetts Historical Society to prepare a kind of New Edition for insertion in their Transactions, prepared more especially for American readers. To those Transactions I had before contributed an account of the principal persons in the Suffolk and Essex emigration of 1630 ; and a biographical notice of Philip Vincent, the till then unknown author of the Relation of the Pequot war.'

Subsequent researches have brought to light a few other facts, which will enable us to understand more justly the position at home of the leaders in this movement. They relate especially to Brewster, the elder of the church or congregation, who, next to Robinson the pastor, is the most interesting now, as he was the most influential then, in this groupe of earnest professors of Religion, and bold assertors of the principle of freedom and personal conviction in respect of Christian faith and practice.

My first intention was to give the matter which is


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