The Earlier Life and the Chief Earlier Works of Daniel Defoe

The Earlier Life and the Chief Earlier Works of Daniel Defoe

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The Earlier Life and the Chief Earlier Works of Daniel Defoe

The Earlier Life and the Chief Earlier Works of Daniel Defoe

Read FREE!

Excerpt

One of the Commissioners for Managing His Majesly's Duties on Glass. &c.

SIR,

This preface comes directed to you, not as Commissioner, &c., under whom I have the honour to serve His Majesty; nor as a friend, though I have great obligations of that sort also; but as the most proper judge of the subjects treated of, and more capable than the greatest part of mankind to distinguish and understand. them.

Books are useful only to such whose genius are suitable to the subject of them; and to dedicate a book of projects to a person who had never concerned himself to think that way, would be like music to one that has no ear.

And yet your having a capacity to judge of these things no way brings you under the despicable title of a projector, any more than knowing the practices and subtleties of wicked men makes a man guilty of their crimes.

The several chapters of this book are the results of particular thoughts, occasioned by conversing with the public affairs during the present war with France. 'The losses and casualties which attend all trading nations in the world, when involved in so cruel a war as this, have reached us all, and I am none of the least sufferers. If this has put me, as well as others, on inventions and projects, so much the subject of' this book, it is no more than a proof of the reason I give for the general projecting humour of the nation.

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