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know not how much my pride might be inflamed ; but when I observe the extensive benevolence and boundless liberality by which all who have the honour to approach you, are dismissed more happy than they come, I am afraid of raising my own value, since I dare not ascribe it so much to my power of pleasing as your willingness to be pleased.
Yet as every man is inclined to flatter himself, I am desirous to hope that I am not admitted to greater intimacy than others without some qualifications for so advantageous a distinction, and shall think it my duty to justify, by constant respect and sincerity, the favours which you have been pleased to show me.
I am, my lord, .
The ENGLISH WORKs of ROGER Ascham, edited by
JAMES BENNET. 4to. 1767.
To the Right Hon. ANTHONY ASHLEY COOPER, Earl of
MY LORD, Having endeavoured, by an elegant and useful edition, to recover the esteem of the public to an author undeservedly neglected, the only care which I now owe to his memory, is that of inscribing his works to a patron whose acknowledged eminence of character may awaken attention and attract regard.
I have not suffered the zeal of an editor so far to take possession of my mind, as that I should obtrude upon your lordship any productions unsuitable to the dignity of your rank or of your sentiments. Ascham was notonly the chief ornament of a celebrated college, but visited foreign countries, frequented courts, and lived in familiarity with statesmen and princes ; not only instructed scholars in literature, but formed ELIZABETH to empire.
To propagate the works of such a writer will not be unworthy of your lordship's patriotism ; for I know not what greater benefits you can confer on your country, than that of preserving worthy names from oblivion, by joining them with your own.
I am, my lord,
“ NEW TABLES OF INTEREST ;
DESIGNED TO ANSWER, IN THE MOST CORRECT AND EX
PEDITIOUS MANNER, THE COMMON PURPOSES
NESS OF THE PUBLIC FUNDS.
By JOHN PAYNE, of the Bank of England.” 17586
A MONG the writers of fiction, whose business is to furnish that entertainment which fancy perpetually deinands, it is a standing plea, that the beauties of nature are now exhausted ; that imitation has exerted all its power, and that nothing more can be done for the service of their mistress, ihan to exhibit a perpetual transposition of known objects, and draw new pictures, not by introducing new images, but by giving new lights and shades, a new arrangement and colouring to the old. This plea has been cheerfully admitted ; and fancy, led by the hand of a skilful guide, treads over again the flowery path she has often trod before, as much enamoured with every new diversification of the same prospect, as with the first appearance of it.
In the regions of science, however, there is not the same indulgence ; the understanding and the judgment
travel there in the pursuit of truth, whom they always expect to find in one simple form, free from the disguises of dress and ornament ; and, as they travel with laborious step and a fixed eye, they are content to stop when the shades of night darken the prospect, and patiently wait the radiance of a new morning, to lead there forward in the path they have chosen, which, however thorny, or however steep, is severely preferred to the most pleasing excursions that bring them no nearer to the object of their search. The plea, therefore, that nature is exhausted, and that nothing is left to gratify the mind, but different combinations of the same ideas, when urged as a reason for multiplying unnecessary labours among the sons of science, is not so readily admitted ; the understanding when in possession of truth, is satisfied with the simple acquisition ; and not, like fancy, inclined to wander after new pleasures in the diversification of objects already known, which, perhaps may lead to error.
But notwithstanding this general disinclination to accumulate labours for the sake of that pleasure which arises merely from different modes of investigating truth, yet, as the mines of science have been ciligently opened, and their treasures widely diffused, there may be parts chosen, which, by a proper combination and arrangement, may contribute not only to entertainment but use, like the rays of the sun, collected in a concave mirror, to serve particular purposes of light and heat.
The power of arithmetical numbers has been tried to a vast extent, and variously applied to the improvement both of business and science. In particular, so many calculations have been made with respect to the value and use of money, that some serve only for speculation and amusement; and there is great opportunity for selecting a few that are peculiarly adapted to common business, and the daily interchanges of property among men. '1.hose which happen in the public funds are, at this time, the most frequent and numerous ; and to answer the purposes of that business, in some degree, more perfectly than has hitherto been done, the following tables are published. What that degree of perfection above other tables of the same kind may be, is a matter, not of opinion and taste, in which many might vary, but of accuracy and usefulness, with respect to which most will agree. The approbation they meet with will, therefore, depend upon the experience of those for whom they were principally designed, the proprietors of the public funds, and the brokers who transact the business of the funds, to whose patronage they are cheerfully committed.
Among the brokers of stocks are men of great honour and probity, who are candid and open in all their transactions, and incapable of mean and selfish purposes ; and it is to be lamented, that a market of such importance as the present state of this nation has made theirs, should be brought into any discredit by the intrusion of bad men, who, instead of serving their country, and procuring an honest subsistence in the army or the fleet, endeavour to maintain luxurious tables, and splendid equipages, by sporting with the public credit.
It is not long since the evil of stock jobbing was risen to such an enormous height, as to threaten great injury