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Et vos, O Lauri, carpam, et te, proxima Myrte,
against Gray's-Inn, Holborn. MDCCLXI.
T HE tranflator had often read T with pleasure the following efsays in the original ; and was as often forry, that no writer of genius had undertaken to publish, in english, a complete translation of all monsieur de Voltaire's plays, or as the french term it, his Theatre, to which these several differtations are prefixed.
Such an attempt would have been too great for the leisure or for the abilities of the present translator. Mr. Dryden's prefaces, which have done to great honour to that name, and which run pretty much on the fame subject with these
of M. de Voltaire, have long been wished for, in a separate edition from the rest of his works. To this thought, it must be confessed, is owing the publication here given : a task. no ways unpleasing to the person who undertook it; nor, as he hopes, will be an unacceptable present to the public .: especially since those who have already gratified us with masterly imitations of fume of M. de Voltaire's theatrical pieces, have omitted the prefatory discourses, which the author. himself thought necessary.