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THE first intention of this Publication was formed several years ago, and then announced to the Public through the medium of the Quarterly Review. At that period, an ample collection of materials for the work was made, with great assiduity and care, and a large expence incurred towards its speedy completion.
Circumstances, wholly uninteresting to the Public, have retarded the publication till now.
It is intended to reprint, in the present form, the Works of the best of the English Novelists, together with selections from the German, French, and Italian, (some of which are already translated, and others in the course of translation,) with Memoirs of the Authors' Lives, and Criticisms on their Writings, prefixed. The Works of each Author will be published separately and complete, in a single volume, as in the present instance, or in two or more, as the length of the compositions shall require.
It is not the Publisher's intention to enlarge, either on the value of his materials, the correctness of the typography, or the beautiful execution of his work. The high source from whence he derives his Literary aid, will be at once recognized; and the present Volume is offered as a specimen of the style in which all the others will be executed.