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Of the Publisher of the Surreptitious
E presume we want no apology to the reader
for this publication, but some may be thought needful to Mr. Pope: however he cannot think our offence so great as theirs. who first separately published what we have here but collected in a better form and order. As for the letters we have procured to be added, they serve but to complete, explain, and sometimes set in a true light, those others, which it was not in the writer's, or our
power to recall.
This collection hath been owing to several cabinets: fome drawn from thence by accidents, and others (even of those to ladies ) voluntarily given. It is to one of that sex we are beholden for the whole correspondence with H. C. esq. which letters being lent her by that gentleman, She took the liberty to print; as appears by the following , which we shall give at length, both as it is something curious, and as it may serve for an apology for ourselves.
T. HENRY CROMWELL, Esq.
June 27, 1727. FTER so long a silence as the many and
great oppressions I have fighed under have occafioned, one is at a loss how to begin a letter to so kind a friend as yourself. But as it was always my resolution, if I must fink, to do it as decently (that is, as filently) as I could; fo when I found myself plunged into unforeseen, and unavoidable ruin, I retreated from the world, and in a manner buried myself in a dismal place, where I knew none, and none knew ma In this dull unthinking way, I have protracted a lingering death (for life it cannot be called) ever fince" you saw me, fequestered from company, deprived of my books, and nothing left to con- . verfe with, but the letters of my dead or absent friends; among which latter I always placed yours and Mr. Pope's in the first rank. I lent fome of thém indeed to an ingenious perfon, who was fo delighted with the specimen, that he importuned me for asight of the rest, which having obtained, he conveyed them to the press, I must not say