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TO

THE JUDGES, MAGISTRATES,

AND

Ministers of Christ,

AS THE

ORGANS OF PUBLIC JUSTICE, AND REVEALED

TRUTH,

THE GIPSIES ADVOCATE

IS MOST

RESPECTFULLY AND SINCERELY DEDICATED

BY

THE AUTHOR.

PREFACE.

The Author of the following pages has been urged by numerous friends, and more particularly by his own conscience, to present to the Christian Public a brief account of the people called Gipsies, now wandering in Britain. This, to many readers, may appear inexpedient; as Grellman and Hoyland have written largely on this neglected part of the human family. But it should be recollected, that there are thousands of respectable and intelligent Christians, who never have read, and never may read either of the above authors. The writer of the present work is partly indebted for the sympathies he feels, and which he wishes to awaken in others towards these miserable wanderers, to various authors who have written on them, but more particularly to Grellman and Hoy

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land, who, in addition to the facts which came under their own immediate notice, have published the observations of travellers and others interested in the history of this people. A list of these authors

may

be seen in the Appendix.

But his knowledge of this people does not entirely depend on the testimony of others, having had the opportunity of closely examining for himself their habits and character in familiar visits to their tents, and by allowing his door to be free of access to all those encamped near Southampton, when they have needed his help and advice. Thus has he gained a general knowledge of their vicious habits, their comparative virtues, and their unhappy modes of life, which he hopes the following pages will fully prove, and be the means of placing their character in the light of truth, and of correcting various mistakes respecting them, which have given rise to many unjust and injurious prejudices against them.

The Author could have enlarged the present work very considerably, had he detailed all the facts with which he is well acquainted.

His object, however, was to furnish a work which should be concise and cheap, that he might be the means of exciting among his countrymen an energetic benevolence towards this despised people; for it cannot be denied that many thousands of them have never given the condition of the Gipsies a single thought.

Such a work is now presented to the public. Whether the author has succeeded, will be best known to those persons who have the most correct and extensive information relative to the unhappy race in question. Should he be the honoured instrument of exciting in any breasts the same feelings of pity, mercy, love and zeal for these poor English heathens, as is felt and carried into useful plans for the heathens abroad, by Christians of all denominations; he will then be certain that, by the

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