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PRE FAC E.
I TAVING now arrived at the conclusion of our 11 Twentieth Volume, we should have been difposed to have celebrated this year as a sort of jubilee, and season of self-congratulation, if the awful aspect of the times had not forbidden every emotion bor. dering upon levity, and afforded matter of the most serious consideration and reflection to every member of the community. No circumstance of time, nor state of affairs, can, however, repress our gratitude, or restrain our acknowledgements to the Publick, for that continued favour, which, as it has during so many years, constantly increased with our labours, so it has alone enabled us to encounter the arduous task of appearing annually before them in so many successive publications, upon each of which, their former esteem, and future approbation, were, of course, in some degree hazarded.
The importance and magnitude of our historical business have unhappily risen to nearly the highest pitch at which they seem capable of arriving. We relate events, in which every member of this wide and divided empire is deeply interested; in which many thousands are immediately and personally concerned ; and wherein its best blood is too copiously Thed. The incidents are numberless, and the parties concerned in every incident numerous. It is