The present edition of Ormond is (so far as can be ascertained) the sixth reprint of the work since its first appearance in New York a hundred and thirty-seven years ago. It was included in the three collected editions of Brown's novels -- 1827, 1857, and 1887; and it was twice reprinted separately -- in London, 1839, and in New York, 1846. It is an old-fashioned tale, presenting an ideal heroine of the Age of the Enlightenment, whose rays warmed not France, Britain, and Germany alone, but the young American Republic as well. It is a tale of struggle against poverty and pestilence, the persecutions of grasping and unscrupulous men, and, most fearful of all, the devilish arts of the seducer.
Of the four best novels of Brown, our first fiction writer of any consideration, Ormond is the only one not readily available in recent years. The introduction aims to place the author and his work in their proper historical setting; the bibliography (together with the notes to the introduction) it is hoped will provide the curious with an adequate guide to further reading.
To Professor Harry Hayden Clark, general editor of this series, my thanks are due for kindly advice and aid in the preparation of this volume.
PALO ALTO, CALIFORNIA