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ST. MARY'S, OXFORD,
BEFORE THE UNIVERSITY,
IN THE YEAR 1787;
BY WILLIAM HAWKINS, M. A.
PRINTED AT THE CLARENDON PRESS,
AND SOLD BY D. PRINCE AND J. COOKE, OXFORD;
AND J. F. AND C. RIVINGTON, LONDON.
M DCC LXXXVII,
AVING had the honour of being appointed preacher of the Bampton Lectures for the current year, by the Heads of Colleges in Oxford, I have the happiness to introduce them to the Public with the additional great advantage of your Grace's protection; an advantage the more confiderable, as it derives as much from the character, as the rank of my patron.
In this fituation it will, I prefume, become me to address your Grace rather under the form of preface than in the ftyle of dedication.
My flender pretenfions to your favour are grounded in the earnest endeavour of the following fheets fully and circumftantially to vindicate that faith which, I need not tell your Grace, is not barely attacked, but infulted every day. The Charity which is not eafily provoked muft refent the freedom, I had almoft fard the audacity which distinguishes the infidels of the prefent generation. These Gentlemen affect to be the party aggrieved; and to confole themselves at the same time with a hope, and fometimes a perfuafion of the fpeedy abolition of confeffions and fyftems, and, in confe