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OPINIONS OF ANCIENTS AND MODERNS
AN ACCOUNT OF THE MANUSCRIPTS, VERSIONS, AND COMMENTS,
AND THE TIME OF ITS RECEPTION IN THE CHRISTIAN CHURCHES.
BY DANIEL WATERLAND, D.D.
FORMERLY MASTER OF MAGDALENE COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE,
SOLD AT THE DEPOSITORY,
GREAT QUEEN STREET, LINCOLN'S INN FIELDS,
NO. 4, ROYAL EXCHANGE;
AND BY ALL BOOKSELLERS.
TO HIS GRACE
WILLIAM LORD ARCHBISHOP OF YORK,
PRIMATE OF ENGLAND AND METROPOLITAN.
I AM desirous of sending these Papers abroad under Your Grace's name, in confidence you will be a patron to them, as you have been to the author. I would make their way short and easy to the public esteem, by introducing them first into Your Grace's acquaintance and good opinion: which if they have once the honour to obtain, I may then be assured that they will be both useful to the world, and acceptable with all good men :-the height of my ambition.
The subject, my Lord, is the Athanasian Creed; the most accurate system of the Athanasian, that is, the Christian Faith: of which Your Grace is, by your station and character, by duty and office, and, what is more, by inclination and principle, and real services, the watchful guardian and preserver.
The happy fruits of it are visible in the slow and inconsiderable progress that the new heresy has been able to make within your province; where it died, in a manner, as it first arose, and no sooner began to lift up its head, but it sunk down again in shame and
confusion as if the plenty of good seed sown had left no room for tares, or they could take no root in a soil so well cultivated.
While Your Grace is promoting the honour and interests of our holy faith, in the eminent way, by the wisdom of your counsels, the authority of your precepts, and the brightness of your high example; I am endeavouring, in such a way as I can, to contribute something to the same common cause, though it be but slight and small, though it be only reviewing the fences, and surveying the outworks; which is the most I pretend to in the History here presented.
What advantage others may reap from the publication, will remain in suspense: but I am sure of one to myself, (and I lay hold of it with a great deal of pleasure,) the opportunity I thereby have of returning my public thanks to Your Grace for your public favours. Though this, my Lord, is but a scanty expression for them, and far short, where the engaging manner and circumstances, known but to few, and not to be understood by many, make so considerable an addition in the whole, and almost double the obligation upon,
Your Grace's most obliged, most dutiful,
and most obedient humble servant,
Cambridge, Magd. Coll.,
Oct. 25, 1723.
WHAT I here present the reader with will not require much preface. The Introduction intimates the design, and use, and partition of the work. The Appendix, which is an additional enlargement beyond my first design, gives account of itself. I subjoin two Indexes, for the ease and convenience of such persons as may be disposed not only to read these sheets, but to study the subject. I should scarce have thought of making indexes to so small a treatise, had I not found the like in Tentzelius, upon the same subject, and to a smaller tract than this is. His were of considerable use to me, as often as I wanted to review any particular author, or passage, or to compare distant parts, relating to the same things, one with another: the benefit, therefore, which I reaped from his labours, I am willing to pay back to the public by mine.
As to the subject of the following sheets, I make no question of its well deserving the thoughts and consideration of every studious reader; having before