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PREFACE

BY THE AMERICAN EDITOR.

FEW men have been more careful of their literary reputation than Addison. The last words that he wrote for the public eye, were a dedication of his works to his friend Mr. Craggs. At the same time he gave Tickell particular directions about collecting and publishing them, justly feeling that there was nothing in them which he could look back upon with regret, even from his death-bed. Two years afterwards, the first edition appeared in four handsome quartos, with an engraving from Kneller's portrait, an emblematical vignette, and a full list of subscribers. Tickell undoubtedly meant to do justice to the memory of his patron, but his jealousy of Steele prevented him from calling Addison's earliest and most intimate friend to his assistance, and with the exception of the papers from the Tatler, which were pointed out by Steele at Addison's request, there is nothing in this edition which any other editor might not have done equally well. The only inedited pieces were the Dialogues on Medals and the Treatise of

the Christian religion. The Drummer was omitted, niuch to Steele's mortification, who immediately republished it with many bitter complaints of the editor's carelessness and malignity. But if Tickell did less than he might have done for the illustration of Addison's life and writings, he paid a noble tribute to his virtues in the 'verses to the Earl of Warwick,' which still continues, what Goldsmith pronounced it to be, nearly a hundred years ago, 'one of the finest elegies in our language.'

Many years passed before another edition appeared. Meanwhile Steele died without fulfilling his promise of making up for Tickell's omissions; Tickell himself added nothing to his original edition; and all the members of that 'little senate,' each of whom might have told us many things we should have been glad to know, passed away one by one, leaving us as much in the dark concerning some of the most interesting events of Addison's literary life, as if he had passed all his days among men who had no pretensions to scholarship. Particular works were reprinted from time to time; the Spectator oftenest of all; the letter from Italy retaining its place in miscellanies and collections and Cato never completely losing its hold upon the stage Finally the whole works were republished by Baskerville, with that typographical elegance which has given his editions so high a value for the lovers of handsome books; and again in London in 1804; but merely as reprints of the original edition of 1721.

"At last Bishop Hurd, resting a while from polemics and his Boswellian contemplation of Warburton, betook

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