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BY

ritter von

JOHN G. ZIMMERMAN.

WITH THE

LIFE OF THE AUTHOR.

There is a time
For those whom wisdom and whom nature charm,
To steal themselves from the degenerate crowd,
And soar above this little scene of things ;
To tread low-thoughted vice beneath their feet;
To sooth the throbbing passions into peace ;
And woo lone quiet in her silent walks.

Thomson's Seasons.

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PREFACE.

WEAK and delicate minds may, perhaps, be alarmed by the title of this work. The word solitude, may possibly engender melancholy ideas; but they have only to read a few pages to be undeceived. The author is not one of those extravagant misanthropists who expect that men, formed by nature for the enjoyments of society, and impelled continually towards it by a multitude of powerful and invincible propensities, should seek refuge in forests, and inhabit thé dreary cave or lonely cell; he is a friend to the species, a rational philosopher, and the virtuous citizen, who, encouraged by the esteem of his sovereign, endeavors to enlighten the minds of his fellow creatures upon a subject of infinite importance to them, the attainment of true felicity.

No writer appears more completely convinced than M. Zimmerman, that man is born for society, or feels its duties with more refined sensibility.

It is the nature of human society, and its correspondent duties, which he here undertakes to examine. The important characters of father, husband, son, and citizen, impose on man a variety of obligations, which are always dear to virtuous minds, and establish between him, his country, his family, and his friends,

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