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reference to the departed than a Scriptural quotation can supply.
The influence of epitaphs on society is of a salutary kind. A churchyard is a volume whose admonitions are usually sought when the heart is best prepared to receive them; and he who is softened and impressed by reflections on the dead is not likely to indulge in bitterness and injustice towards the living.
The most simple classification of youth, maturity, and age has been adopted in composing the inscriptions, with little re
ference to rank and those distinctions in
society, which in this life are so precarious, and which death utterly destroys.
At the same time, the diversified cha
racter of life and the varied circumstances
of dissolution have not been disregarded.
The epitaphs are thrown together pro
miscuously in the Volume, to impart a variety which may recommend it to the general Reader.
As the Churchyard Lyrist is intended to be practically and generally useful, it is adapted to different degrees of intelligence. Originality and taste, however desirable, affect, comparatively, but a few, while the many are more accessible to the plainer precepts of piety and morality.
The considerate will not object to the
numerous instances in which the Author has
availed himself of the thoughts of other
writers: without this indulgence, the difficulty of preparing the present publication would have been as much increased, as
the interest of the work would have been
A recent publication has, in a degree, supplied the want of original epitaphs, but not so amply as to render the present
The whole of the in
scriptions now offered to the public were written some time before the publication of
Doctor Booker made its appearance.
As the epitaphs are for the most part suitable
For Pious Characters.