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TO

LYMAN BEECHER, D.D.

То

you I owe more than to any other living being. In childhood, you were my Parent ; in later life, my Teacher ; in manhood, my Companion. To your affectionate vigilance I owe my principles, my knowledge, and that I am a Minister of the Gospel of Christ. For whatever profit they derive from this little Book, the young will be indebted to you.

PREFACE.

Having watched the courses of those who seduce the young their arts, their blandishments, their pretences ;-having witnessed the beginning and consummation of ruin, almost in the same year, of many young men, naturally well disposed, whose downfall began with the appearances of innocence ; I felt an earnest desire, if I could, to raise the suspicion of the young, and to direct their reason to the arts

which they are,

with such facility, destroyed.

I ask every YOUNG MAN who may read this book, not to submit his judgment to mine, not to hate because I denounce, nor blindly to follow me ; but to weigh my reasons, that he may form his own judgment. I only claim the place of a companion; and that I may gain his ear, I have sought to present truth in those forms which best please the young; and though I am not without hope of satisfying the aged and the wise, my whole thought has been to carry with me the intelligent sympathy of

YOUNG MEN.

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It is proper to remark, that many of the statements in these Lectures, which may seem severe, or overdrawn, in New England, are literally true in the West. Insensibility to public indebtedness, gambling among the members of the Bar, the ignoble arts of Politicians, I know not if such things are found at the East,—but within one year past an edition of three thousand copies of these Lectures has been distributed through the West, and it has been generally noticed in the papers, and I have never heard objections from any quarter, that the canvass has been too strongly colored.

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EXTRACTS FROM NOTICES OF FIRST EDITION.

OPINIONS OF DISTINGUISHED LITERARY MEN.

[From Wm. H. McGuffey, Professor at Woodward College, Cincinnati, Ohio.]

6. Mr. Beecher sketches character with a masterly hand ; and the old, as well as the young, must bear witness to the truth and fidelity of his portraits. I would recommend the book to the especial attention of those for whom it was designed, and hope that the patronage extended to this may encourage the author to make other efforts through the press, for the promotion of enlightened patriotism and sound morals."

(From D. H. Allen, Professor at Lane Seminary, Cincinnati, Ohio.] “ We have a variety of books designed for young men, but I know of none worth half as much as this. It will be sure to be read, and if read, will not be easily forgotten; and the young man who reads and remembers it, will always have before him a vivid picture of the snares and pitfalls to which he is exposed. Every youth should possess it. Every father should place it in the hands of his sons. It should be in every Sabbath School Library, on board every Steam-boat, in every Hotel, and wherever young men spend a leisure hour,"

[From Dr. A. Wylie, President of the Indiana University, at Bloomington.]

“ The indignant rebukes which the author deals out against that spirit of licentiousness which shows itself in those frivolous works which he mentions, and which are corrupting the taste as well as the morals of our youth, have my warmest approbation. That the genius and wit of Addison himself should be set aside for the trash of such works is lamentable : it is ominous.

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