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November 24th, 1887—my sixty-eighth birthday. It has happened that to-day the last proof-sheets of this volume have come from the printer, and before they go back beyond recall, I must indulge in a few words of preface.
In my case, the apology which most “Reminiscences” require is to be found in the circumstances of my later life. Compelled to withdraw myself from many former activities, I have often turned my thoughts upon the past and remembered the kindness and devotion of a multitude of friends. To them in all gratitude I inscribe the following pages, in the hope that they will find the recollections of old days as refreshing and sometimes as amusing as I have done.
To Mr. Hadden, my friend and fellow-labourer for the last seven and a half years, who, from my notes and papers and from our conversations together, has prepared this book for publication, I should be under deeper obligation, did I not know that it has been with him a labour of love.