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JANUARY, FEBRUARY, MARCH, APRIL,
Efte procul lites, et amara prælia linguæ.
PRINTED FOR F. C. AND J. RIVINGTON,
NO. 62, ST. PAUL'S CHURCH-YARD.
Printed by Law and Gilbert, St. Jului's Square, Clerkenwelt
P R E F A C E.
URNING over the well-known pages
friend Izaak Walton, as an amusemnent suited to the season, while a brother of the quill was gone to realize his precepts on a neighbouring river, we could not but be struck with an analogy, if not a resemblance, between our critical occupation and that of the patient angler. Perpetually watching the great stream of literature, we sometimes bring to land a noble fish, which affords us excellent sport, and supplies a pleasing narrative for our friends; while the smaller fry, which for ever play at the surface, and seem to court the hook, are packed together in our basket; and if they prove not fit to make a separate dith, are employed as garnish for their nobler brethren; or, when they appear entirely worthless, are thrown to the cats and dogs, which continually spit and growl beneath the Critic's table. Our Preface is a felect feast, made only from the nobler captures ; a course of luxuries, to which we now once more invite our readers to sit down. Let us hope that our work may always prove, if not "a reft after tedious fiudy,” as Sir H. Wotton said of angling, yet a study not in itself tedious; and in general, according to the remainder of that character, “ a chearer of spirits, a diverter of fadness, à calmer of unquiet thoughts, a moderator of [evil] paflions, and a procurer of contentedness."
* See Iz. Walton. Hawkins's Edit. 1775, p. 43.