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The little tour which gave birth to the following remarks, was taken immediately after the exchange of the ratifications of a peace, necessary, but not inglorious to my country, after a contest unexampled in its cause, calamity, extension, vicissitudes and glory; amidst a people who, under the influence of a political change, hitherto unparallelled, were to be approached as an order of beings, exhibiting a moral and political form before but little known to themselves and to the world, in the abrupt removal of habits and sentiments which had silently and uninterruptedly taken deep root in the soil of ages.
During a separation of ten years, we have received very little account of this extraordinary people, which could be relied upon. Dissimilar sensations, excited by their principles and proceedings, ever partially and irregularly known, have depicted unaccording representations of them, and, in the sequel, have exhibited rather a high-coloured, fanciful delineation, than a plain and faithful resemblance of the original. Many are the persons who have been thus misled.
These fugitive sketches, in which an attempt is made to delineate, just as they occurred, those scenes
which, to my mind at least, were new and interesting,
Totnes, August, 1802.
The engravings which accompany this work, are of sketches made