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and his Two Difcourfes upon Confcience, which were formerly publish'd without a Name, and make Part of the Collection of London Cases.
And thefe tro Volumes contain all that he himself bad fuffered at any time to go abroad into the World.
But bis Executors were a little more liberal of his Productions; and in 1716. they added to the Collections made by himself, and then by his Bookfeller, as above-mentioned, two Volumes more, confifting of Sermons never before printed. But this Step nevertheless was taken by them with due Caution, and after Advice bad with Some Judicious Prelates, who had read them after they were transcribed, and confirmed the Refolution of making them publick.
And now, after feveral Years elapfed, two Volumes more have pass'd the Prefs, being the last Addition that
will be made to the Collection of his Works, fave a Small Referve of Difcourfes in the Popish Controversy, which may poffibly, fome time or other, be published with other of his Papers relating to that Controversy, and penn'd likewife in thofe Times.
The first and principal Defign of tranfcribing thefe, which are now printed, from the Original ManuScripts in Short-band, (for all his Sermons were wrote in Characters) was to preferve and refcue them from the Danger they were in of being irretrievably loft by being buried in the Cypher, if not extracted thence, and brought to light by one who was perfectly well acquainted with the Characters be used, and with his peculiar manner of expreffing and compounding them. The Tranfcript was begun fome Tears fince, and proceeded very leifurely, and with feveral Interruptions, under the uncertain View whether it should ever be made publick or A 3
no, till the Year 1730, when the greatest Part of it was finished, perufed and approved by competent Judges, and at length prepared for Publica
The Reader therefore may be affur'd (and it is chiefly for his Satisfaction in this Matter that this Advertisement is prefixed to the Edition) that these are the Genuine Works of the Author, to whom the Title Page afcribes them; and that they are not rafhly obtruded upon the World, as Pofthumous Works too often are, but offered after mature Deliberation, and under a real Conviction of their being as perfect in their Kind as any wherewith this laft Age hath been prefented.
Indeed, the bare avouching them to be Genuine fuperfedes any further Recommendation of them. Both the Character and Writings of the Archbishop have been generally fo well esteemed,
efteemed, that they stand in no need of the Suffrage of the Publisher, but will be able to support themselves (even in an Age by no means favourable to good Men and good Books) fo long as Truth can ftand her Ground, and found Reafoning with Perfpicuity fhall be accounted the chief Character of Perfection in Writing, efpecially upon Divine and Moral Subjects.
Moft of the Treatifes in this first Volume are compounded, fome of two, Some of three Sermons, joined together in the Form of continued Difcourfes, which will account for the Length of feveral of them, as it also gave occafion to entitle them Difcourfes rather than Sermons. The Defign of this Difpofition was to preferve the Chain of Reafoning upon each Subject intire and uninterrupted without thofe Recapitulations, which, tho' necessary indeed under their Divifion into diftinct Sermons, in order to accommodate them to the Pulpit, yet are altogether unneceffary
ceffary to be retain'd for the Perufal of the Reader, who would rather be incommoded than relieved by fuch unfeafonable Breaks in the Body of a juft Difcourfe. But however no more Liberty was taken with them, than would barely answer this End of Convenience, by omitting the Introductions or Preambles to the fubfequent Sermons, when more than one were form'd upon the fame Text. And because the fame Liberty could not be fo well taken with the four laft Sermons in this Volume, which are all likewife upon one Text, therefore they are publifhed intire, as they were found in the Copies.
The other Volume confifts wholly of Single Sermons, publish'd verbatim as they were preached, at least without any defign'd Omiffion or Alteration. Moft of them had been deliver'd at Court, before their late Majefties King William, Queen Mary, and Queen Anne, as the Dates prefixed to them