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To the kindness of Lord Braybrooke I have been indebted for the interesting correspondence of Newton, Mr. Pepys, and Mr. Millington, which is now published for the first time, and which throws much light upon an event in the life of our author that has recently acquired an unexpected and a painful importance. These letters, when combined with those which passed between Newton and Locke, and with a curious extract from the manuscript diary of Mr. Abraham Pryme, kindly furnished to me by his collateral descendant Professor Pryme of Cambridge, fill up a blank in his history, and have enabled me to delineate in its true character that temporary indisposition which, from the view that has been taken of it by foreign philosophers, has been the occasion of such deep distress to the friends of science and religion.
To Professor Whewell, of Cambridge, Iowevery great obligations for much valuable information. Professor Rigaud, of Oxford, to whose kindness I have on many other occasions been indebted, sup plied me with several important facts, and with ex tracts from the diary of Hearne in the Bodleian Library, and from the original correspondence between Newton and Flamstead, which the president of Corpus Christi College had for this purpose committed to his care; and Dr. J. C. Gregory, of Edinburgh, the descendant of the illustrious inventor of the reflecting telescope, allowed me to use his unpublished account of an autograph manuscript of Sir Isaac Newton, which was found among the papers of David Gregory, Savilian Professor of Astronomy at Oxford, and which throws some light on the history of the Principia.
I have been indebted to many other friends for the communication of books and facts, but especially to Sir William Hamilton, Bart., whose liberality in promoting literary inquiry is not limited to the circle of his friends.
D. B. Allerly, June 1st, 1831.