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REA DE R.
HE author of thefe fermons was fo well known, par
Tricularly for his most excellent and useful difcourfes from the pulpit, that I shall not attempt, by any thing I can fay, to recommend them to the publick. I know very well, they have already that credit in the world, which will render any apology needlefs; efpecially when, by this publication of them, they fhall fpeak for themselves.
I think it requifite, only to affure the reader, that they are what they pretend to be, the genuine works of that great man.
Whilft I had the happiness of converfing with him, he was pleafed (at my request) to inftruct me in the charaeter in which he wrote all his fermons and fome of these now published, having been tranfcribed by me fome years fince, were found among ft his papers, corrected with his own hand.
By what he had been pleafed to fay, that I was master of his character, and by the few errata he observed in my firft performance, I was encouraged to fet about this work; in which I can folemnly profefs, that I have obferved a religious care and strictness, neither to omit nor add any thing,
but an of, a the, or the like, when the fenfe plainly requi red it; and of that too I have given notice, by affixing this mark (") upon the word which I did not find in the original fo that the reader is left to judge of the fitness of Juch additions; which, after all, are fo very few and inconfiderable, as fcarcely to deferve this notice; only that he might be fatisfied (in cafe the printer do his part) that he hath here, what he expects, a perfect tranfcript of thefe fermons and in them a true and lively strain of Chriftian piety and eloquence, fo fitted to all capacities, that I cannot but hope, all that shall read them will be the better for them, even thofe not excepted (if there be any fuch) who may have entertained any unreasonable prejudices against them, or their Moft Reverend author.
I have always thought, and often faid it, that if any were leavened with prejudice against him, they were, to be fure, fuch as did not know him; and the farther I go in his writings, the more I am affured that it must be so.
Lambeth, April 2. 1695.