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OF THE FOUR GRAND SYSTEMS OF RELIGION,
AND OF THE VARIOUS EXISTING DENOMINATIONS,
SECTS, AND PARTIES
TO WHICH IS SUBJOINED, A VIEW OF MATERIALISM,
NECESSITARIANISM, DEISM, AND ATHEISM.
BY THE REV. ROBERT ADAM, M.A.
CHAPLAIN TO THE RIGHT HON. THE EARL OF KELLIE.
“ Prove all things : hold fast that which is good.”
1 THESS. v. 21.
A NEW EDITION, CORRECTED AND IMPROVED.
IN TWO VOLUMES.
THE first edition of this work was inscribed to the memory of a learned and yenerable Prelate, under whom as my Diocesan, and with whom as the senior Pastor of our congregation, I lived in much harmony; and to whom, for many nameless and unmerited attentions, I was much attached. i. In that case, the world could not question the purity of my motive for such inscription, nor ascribe it to any thing else than to those feelings of gratitude,--that warmth of affection,-and that veneration due to age, character, and worth, • which it was meant to express.
And yet, my Lord, I feel no scruple in avow, ing to your Lordship, and to the world at large, that my motive was not less pure and unexceptionable, nor essentially different, in the
present instance; for, when I ventured to request the permission, which your Lordship so kindly
condescended to grant, and of which I now avail myself, I was on the eve of returning to a distant corner of the world, where I had the prospect of being so much more useful than I conceived I could be any where at home, that I had not then a wish or desire to revisit this country, until age should incapacitate me for professional duty, or sickness should oblige me to return.
The warm interest your Lordship was pleased to take in the object of my mission to Europe, and your ready assistance to promote that object, were so enhanced by the kind and condesecending manner in which you uniformly received me,—though a stranger, and without any claim to your attention, independently of the highly respectable introduction, for which I was indebted to one of the above Prelate's most valuable friends,—that to the feelings of gratitude to your Lordship, which were deeply impressed upon my mind, was added a more than common degree of respect and veneration.
and veneration. No better mode of expressing those feelings then suggested itself than that which, by your Lordship's permission, I have here the honour to adopt ; and permit me to
say, that though, from change of circumstances, my original motive may appear to others to be now less pure, it is in fact, and to my own conscience, much strengthened by repeated and no less unmerited obligations.
As to your Lordship’s strong and peculiar claim to this expression of my gratitude and esteem, I feel perfectly satisfied in my own mind; and while my readers in general will no doubt agree with me, in this at least, that the following Work possesses but little to entitle it to your Lordship’s countenance and regard, I am persuaded that your wonted candour and kindness will overlook its many imperfections; and your venerated name, thus associated with it, will be its best passport into the world.
I have the honour to be,
and faithful Servant,
London, 27th March, 18233.