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Messrs. J. & J. Harper, “ Enclosed is an order upon

for fifty dollars, for which you will oblige me by forwarding two complete sets of your excellent Family Library. You may remember that I ordered from you, about six months ago, all the numbers then published; these I gave to my eldest son, requiring him to pur chase every succeeding volume. He has read them all, and has often spoken to me of the pleasure they have yielded him; and the effect they have produced in storing his mind and improving his understanding, is so great and so perceptible, that I have determined to give a set to each of his brothers.”

.“ Messrs. HarpersNew York, “GENTLEMEN: I wish you to send me all the numbers of the Library since the Life of Frederic the Great, to complete the set I began taking several months since; and also to send me another set complete ; several of my neighbours and myself have been so much pleased with the work, that we have agreed to subscribe for a set and give it to our town library ; in fact some measure of this kind has become absolutely necessary for me, for in our little place the work is so much liked, that I am perpetually worried with applications to lend the volumes.''

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· Messrs. Harper, * Have the goodness to send to me five copies of each of the last three works published in your Family Library, for which the enclosed will, I believe, be sufficient to pay. I have adopted the plan mentioned in a letter from a teacher, published in one of the former numbers, viz. that of placing the works in the hands of some of my more advanced scholars, and the effect has been equally gratifying to me, and beneficial to them.”

“Gentlemen :-I am the Preceptor of an Academy in this village, in which are a great many young men who take an interest in every publication which has a tendency to improve their minds, and store them with useful knowledge. Having read a number of very favourable notices of the Family Library, I purchased, a few weeks since, the first eight numbers of that work, and placed it at the disposal of the young men under my charge. The anxiety which they manifested in obtaining these volumes for perusal, has induced me to send for the remaining numbers of the Library, and also to express to you my entire conviction of the utility of the work."

L E C T U RES

ON

GENERAL LITERATURE,

POETRY &c..

DELIVERED AT THE ROYAL INSTITUTION IN 1830 AND 1831.

BY JAMES MONTGOMERY,
Author of "The World before the Flood," "The Pelican Island," &c. &c.

COMPLETE IN ONE VOLUME.

NEW-YORK:

PUBLISHED BY HARPER & BROTHERS,

NO. 82 CLIFF-STREET, AND SOLD BY THE PRINCIPAL BOOKSELLERS THROUGHOUT THE

UNITED STATES.

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PREFACE.

HAVING ventured to lay these papers before the Public, the author dare not go further, in explanation or apology, than to express a hope that, whatever imperfections may be found in them, the candid reader will be more inclined to approve than condemn what he cannot but perceive has been done in good faith, and in honour of a noble art, which its advocate may have

“loved, not wisely, but too well.”

That art he pretends not to teach, but merely to illustrate according to his views of its worth and influence.

Claiming the right of an author to borrow from himself, he has adopted a few brief passages, with necessary alterations, from the Introductory Essays to the Christian Psalmist and the Christian Poet, compiled by him for MR. COLLINS, of Glasgow. A few larger sections, but entirely new-modelled, have been taken from critical articles furnished by him to a respectable Review, between the years 1806 and 1815. The “ Retrospect of Literature,” and the “ View of Modern English Literature,"

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were printed in the first volume of the “ Metropolitan,” edited by Mr. CAMPBELL, after they had been delivered at the Royal INSTITUTION.

To the noble President, and the honourable Managers of that Institution, as well as to the liberal-minded audiences before whom the whole series was delivered, it is but justice to add, distinctly, that they are in nowise responsible for any thing in these Lectures which was unworthy to be repeated before them. The author would disdain to shelter himself under their sanction from any censure which honest criticism can inflict upon him, in cases where he may have abused their confidence. The Lectures have been anxiously revised, especially those parts which the limited time allowed for delivery required to be omitted on the spot, but which appeared to be more necessary for their intelligence when submitted to cool perusal, than when uttered before indulgent hearers with the living voice.

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Sheffield, April 24, 1833.

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