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CURIOSITIES

LITER A TU RE.

FIRST SERIES.

BY I. D'ISRAELI, ESQ.

"ALEXANDRIAN EDITION."

NEW-YORK:

WILLIAM PEARSON & CO., 106 NASSAU STREET ;

SANUEL COLMAN, BOSTON; AND CHAPPELL AND CO., PHILADELPHIA.

PREFACE.

This miscellany was first formed, many years ago, when two of my friends were occupied in those anecdotical labours, which have proved so entertaining to themselves, and their readers.* I conceived that a collection of a different complexion, though much less amusing, might prove somewhat more instructive; and that literary history afforded an almost unexplored source of interesting facts. The work itself has been well enough received by the public to justify its design.

Every class of readers requires a book adapted to itself and that book which interests, and perhaps brings much new information to a multitude of readers, is not to be contemned, even by the learned. More might be alleged in favour of works like the present than can be urged against them. They are of a class which was well known to the ancients. The Greeks were not without them; the Romans loved them under the title of Varia Eruditio ; and the Orientalists, more than either, were passionately fond of these agreeable collections. The fanciful titles, with which they decorated their variegated miscellanies, sufficiently express their delight.

The design of this work is to stimulate the literary curiosity of those, who, with a taste for its tranquil pursuits, are impeded in their acquirements. The characters, the events, and the singularities of modern literature, are not always familiar even to those who excel in classical studies. But a more numerous part of mankind, by their occupations, or their indolence, both unfavourable causes to literary improvement, require to obtain the materials for thinking, by the easiest and readiest, means. This work has proved useful: it has been reprinted abroad, and it has been translated; and the honour which many writers at home have conferred on it, by referring to it, has exhilarated the zealous labour which seven editions have necessarily exacted.

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CURIOSITIES OF LITERATURE;

BY I, D'ISRAELI, ESQ.

PREFACE.

dan gente.

This miscellany was first formed, many years ago, when two of my friends were occupied in those anecdotical labours, which have proved so entertaining to themselves, and their readers.* I conceived that a collection of a different

complexion, though much less amusing, might prove somewhat more instructive; Y and that literary history afforded an almost unexplored source of interesting j facts. The work itself has been well enough received by the public to justify its design.

Every class of readers requires a book adapted to itself and that book which interests, and perhaps brings much new information to a multitude of readers, is not to be contemned, even by the learned. More might be alleged in favour of works like the present than can be urged against them. They are of a class which was well known to the Ancients. The Greeks were not with. out them, the Romans loved them under the title of Varia Eruditio, and the Orientalists, more than either, were passionately fond of these agreeable collections. The fanciful titles, with which they decorated their variegated miscellanies, sufficiently express their delight.

The design of this work is to stimulate the literary curiosity of those, who, with a taste for its tranquil pursuits, are impeded in their acquirements. The characters, the events, and the singularities of modern literature, are not always familiar even to those who excel in classical studies. But a more numerous part of mankind, by their occupations, or their indolence, both unfavourable causes to literary improvement, require to obtain the materials for thinking, by the easiest and readiest means. This work has proved useful : it has beon reprinted abroad, and it has been translated; and the honour which many writers at home have conferred on it, by referring to it, has exhilarated the zealous labour which seven editions have necessarily exacted.

* The late William Seward, Esq., and James Pettit Andrews, Esq.

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