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THE selected literary articles here offered to the American public in a periodical form, if chosen with a judgment equal to the expectations of the Editors, must contain an assemblage of the most interesting and agreeable papers: nothing less, than the essence of all the best foreign productions published within the last three or four years, in the English and Scottish capitals, in the form of Reviews, Journals, and Magazines. To this are occasionally added such original Reviews of distinguished American works as have well deserved the place.
The motive which led to this compilation was chiefly to present our countrymen at the least expense, the opinions and speculations of the great and leading literary and political writers abroad. The Edinburgh and Quarterly Reviews, alone, gleaned into this work, furnish such able writings as flow from the pens of lord Petty, the earl of Selkirk, Jeffray, Playfair, Stewart, Brougham, Horner, and the reverend Sydney Smith, on one side; and Canning, Hookham Frere, John Smith, George Ellis, Walter Scott, Southey, Stephen, Gifford, and the reverend Gerard Andrews, on the other side.
Indeed it is a confessed fact, that since periodical works received their first renown under such geniuses as Addison, Steele, Goldsmith, Johnson, Marmontel,
and Burke, they have not ceased to stand as sentinels at all the avenues of literary fame, and has justified the declaration that "their utility is now as universally acknowledged as the importance of the critical art." Their notices are not limited to British productions, but extend to every foreign work of celebrity or merit : they embrace every question in political government, and the acutest dissertations upon every new topic in the science and literature of the world.
It is with gratitude we declare that the patronage. has already been such to this work (having supported its growth to its eighth volume, and to be continued) as with some, makes it their chief objection to subscribing to it: to accommodate such, we have therefore qualified the present volumes (in sets of 1 to 2, or 1 to 4 volumes, as may be preferred) to be sold complete in themselves, though but a part of the whole work.
Those who would wish to continue the work as subscribers can be supplied at five dollars per annum (comprising 2 vols. in twelve numbers) by beginning at the month of January in any subsequent year, and forwarding the amount, post paid, to JOHN F. WATSON, at Philadelphia.
REVIEWS OF LITERATURE,
AND SPIRIT OF
"The wheat from all these publications should, from time to time, be winnowed, and the chaff thrown away." -Externo robore crescit.
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