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THE science which treats of human nature as diversified in appearances and conditions, among the various countries of the world, is eminently important both in its origin and tendency. It arises from an affectionate curiosity respecting our species, and prompts to enterprizes the most noble and beneficial. in this sublime feeling, Inan recognizes the dignity of his mittäre, and the means of consummating his greates; giory-for the most glorious actions are likewiso the most useful; and nothing contributes so materially to human happimess, as those enquiries and pursuits that extend the boundaries of knowledge, and thus unite the far separated inhabitants of the earth, by a reciprocal exchange of the blessings of different climates.
In the narratives of the adventurous voyager and the curious traveller, the reader finds novelty com
bined with information. He enters into their views with a relish proportioned to the dangers they have encountered, or the diligence and resolution they have displayed. He attends a Columbus, a Cook, a PARK, or a BRUCE, through their noble and hazardous enterprizes, and reaps the benefit of the acquisition and the pleasure of the description, without the danger and the toil. This study is also incomparably more fascinating than the extravagant fictions of certain novels, which are made the vehicle for spreading the contagion of erroneous sentiments and vicious principles. The perusal of Voy AGES AND TRAVELS may, therefore, be recommended to Youth with peculiar propriety, as the safest and most pleasant mode of expanding the mind and humanizing the heart.
Severaloiters of great celebrity have published splendid and völutilings collections of voyages and travels. But the exiēnē attending the purchase of these extensive works, and the dry, stale digressions with which they are frequently interlarded, render them unfit for general use; and indicate the propriety and utility of such a selection as might amuse without fatiguing, and convey the most requisite information at a price convenient even to the humblest class of society.
To accomplish this object, the Editor proposes to give a brief, connected, and lively account of
the most celebrated and interesting voyages, travels, shipwrecks, and adventures, arranged in such chronological and geographical order, as to mark ... the Progress of Discovery, and exhibit a complete DISPLAY of THE WORLD. He will also divest the original narratives as far as possible of technical phrases and cumbrous minutae, carefully preserving every circumstance that can entertain the fancy or enlarge the understanding; nor shall any allusion appear offensive to youthful innocence or female delicacy. This work may, therefore, be confidently prescribed to the Teachers of Youth, and the Heads of Families, as one of the best and most agreeable inmates they can possess.
The present time has been so eminently distinguished by a successful exhibition of the daring spirit of discovery, as to ensure a favourable reception to a collection like the following; as there can be no doubt, that the interest afforded by scientific expeditions, or important discoveries, is in a great measure proportioned to the nearness to our own times in which they are executed. It is indeed consolatory to reflect, that though the civilized world has long been engaged in wars, the most extensive and terrible ever recorded, yet the boundaries of science and the researches of knowledge have been extended with unparalleled success and rapidity.
The Engravings which embellish this interesting work, will, it is hoped, in point of execution, claim general approbation ; and the Maps, which are executed after the manner of Arrowsmith, will be found more beautiful and accurate than any that have appeared in similar publications. In short, no expence has been spared, nor shall any labour be avoided to render the work worthy the patron
age of the public.
Notes on the West Indies, by Dr. Pinckard - - 396