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SKETCHES AND REPORTS OF PHILOSOPHY, RELIGION, HISTORY,
ARTS, AND MANNERS.
• Proprietors..... Court Street.
ADDRESS OF THE EDITORS. In addressing our readers at the commencement of a new year, it may be expected, either that we are about to minister to our own self complacency by reviewing our past labours, or to feed the hopes of our friends with generous promises for the future. At once to put an end to mere conjecture, we must observe that no other motive operates in the case, thair that which is derived from precedent : we choose not at pre. sent to omit, what for so many years has been performed.
If we are asked what we have done to deserve the thanks and patronage of the publick, we are no doubt obliged to answer the question, and, as far as possible, to vindicate our claims to both. It is very certain, however, that we shall not make out our title to either, by fair professions of disinterest. ed exertions in the cause of learning. The publick takes no cognizance of motives in matters of taste. A good-natured man may write originally for his own amusement, and afterwards print for the amusement of others. But if he chance to fail in the last attempt, which by the way it is rather more probable he will do than in the first; they who are as goodnatured as himself, may yet think themselves entitled to a laugh; and a laugh carries with it more terrours to an author than all the frowns of the satirist. We are aware that we cannot persuade our readers to be grateful for any thing we present, unless they esteem it of positive value. And in consequence of their different sorts of taste, degrees of learning, and extent of intellectual capacity, their decisions will be various upon what we offer them. A censor of a severe and saturnine stamp will set down to the sum of graceless levity, what