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OF

PROSE:

CONSISTING OF

SELECTIONS FROM DISTINGUISHED

ENGLISH AND AMERICAN AUTHORS,

FROM CHAUCER TO THE PRESENT DAY.

THE WHOLE ARRANGED IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER, WITH BIOGRAPHICAL AND

CRITICAL REMARKS.

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PRINCIPAL OF THE PHILADELPHIA HIGH SCHOOL, AND MEMBER OF THE
AMERICAN PHILOSOPHICAL SOCIETY.

PHILADELPHIA:

PUBLISHED BY E. H. BUTLER & CO

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Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1845, by

BUTLER & WILLIAMS

in the Clerk's office of the District Court of the United States, in and for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

B. M. DUSENBERY, STEREOTYPER. d. JERMAN, PRINTER

PREFACE.

THE literature of a nation cannot fail to contain within itself that which has made the nation what it is. Those great ideas, which in the course of centuries have been gradually developed by its master minds, are the moving springs that have set the nation onwards in the career of civilization. Great ideas precede and cause illustrious achievements. The ideal Achilles made the real heroes of Marathon and the Granicus. In the Anglo-Saxon race, from the days of Alfred until now, men of superior genius, the original thinkers in each successive generation, have given birth to ennobling thoughts, which continue to endure, and are perpetuated not only in the language but in the race itself. We are what preceding generations have made us. Englishmen and Americans of the present day are living exponents of the thoughts and truths elaborated by the illustrious dead.

In making, then, a compilation like the present,

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