The Shadow Flies

The Shadow Flies

The Shadow Flies

The Shadow Flies

Excerpt

I have done my best to make no person in this novel use in conversation any words, phrases, or idioms that were not demonstrably used at the time in which they lived: though I am aware, for all the constant and stalwart aid of the New English Dictionary, and the wealth of literature, letters and journals of the period that we possess for our guidance, that any such attempt must be deplorably inadequate; or, at least, that mine is so. I must apologize both for its inadequacies, and to those (if any) who may think that my philological appetite has led me to use too many words which now sound somewhat peculiar in our ears; ghosts of words, "old and obsolete, and such as would never be revived" (as Sir Thomas Browne said of heresies) "but by such extravagant and irregular heads as mine." If they should vex any one, I should be more than sorry, but would assure such that I have rejected so many more of these ghosts than I have admitted, that I am surprised (and hope others will be grateful) at my own moderation.

As it is, they are not so frequent after all, and can, like other revenants, be ignored. As it seems to be the habit to furnish such information, I would add that only a very few of the people in this book are imaginary.

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