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TODESTY and self-diffidence IV are the allowed characteristics of Self-KNOWLEDGE. If then my presuming to address this piece to you may seem to discover more assurance and self-confidence than becomes a true acquaintance with the subject I write upon, I have only this to say; your known condescension and candour have encouraged that presumption : Nor can any thing animate an address of this nature more, than an assurance that the person to whom it is made, has so good an understand.
ing ing in the practical part of this subject, as will incline him to excuse the defects that may appear in the management of it.
But after all, Sir, my own profi. ciency in this science is so poor, that I dare not be confident I am not wrong in my views, with which I desire this small tract may appear under your patronage. That it may have refuge from the petulance of censure, an encourage. ment in the publication, and I, at the same time, an opportunity of testifying my grateful sense of many past favours, are my open and avowed ends herein. But still whether an ambition to be known to the world under the advantage of your friendship be not the secret and true motive, I cannot be certain.
However, if in this point I may be mistaken, there is another in which I think I cannot ; and that
testifying time, an'ation, and age.
is, is, that it is at least a pardonable ambition; in which I shall certain. ly stand acquitted by every one who knows your character, the delicacy of your taste in the choice of friends, and the real honour it does to those you are pleased to admit into that number. I
But even this, Sir, your penetration will soon discover to proceed from the same vanity I before fufpected myself to be guilty of. And the world will judge, that I speak it rather to do myself honour than you. However, I am beforehand with them in the observation. And that I may not be tempted, in this address, to enhance your character (according to the usual style of dedications) in order to do honour to my own, and at once oppress your modesty and expose my vanity, I shall put an end to it, without so much as attempting to describe a character,
which I shall, however, always aim to imitate.
But that you may continue to adorn that public and useful fta. tion you are in, and long live a patron and pattern of folid and disinterested virtue; and that your many charitable offices and good works on earth may meet with a large and late reward in heaven, is the hearty prayer of,
Your much obliged,
and very humble fervant, Dorking van 35, J. MASON.