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THE PLAN

OF AN

ENGLISH DICTIONARY.

TO THE RIGHT HONOURABLE

PHILIP DORMER, EARL OF CHESTERFIELD,

One of his Majesty's principal Secretaries of State.

MY LORD, WHEN first I undertook to write an English Dictionary, I had no expectation of any higher patronage than that of the proprietors of the copy, nor prospect of any other advantage than the price of my labour. I knew that the work in which I engaged is generally considered as drudgery for the blind, as the proper toil of artless industry; a task that requires neither the light of learning, nor the activity of genius, but may be successfully performed without any higher quality than that of bearing burdens with dull patience, and beating the track of the alphabet with sluggish resolution.

Whether this opinion, so long transmitted, and so widely propagated, had its beginning from truth and nature, or from accident and prejudice; whether it be decreed by the authority of reason or the tyranny of ignorance, that, of all the candidates for literary praise, the unhappy lexicographer holds the lowest place, neither vanity nor interest incited me to inquire. It appeared that the province allotted me was, of all the regions of learning, generally confessed to be the least delightful, that it was believed to produce neither fruits nor flowers; and that, after a

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1952

(

1

CONTENTS OF THE FIFTH VOLUME.

MISCELLANEOUS PIECES.

PAGE

1

..... 202

The plan of an English dictionary

23 Preface to the English dictionary

52 Advertisement to the fourth edition of the English dictionary

53 Preface to the octavo edition of the English dictionary.

55 Observations on the tragedy of Macbeth

95 Proposals for printing the works of Shakespeare Preface to Shakespeare...

103 General observations on the plays of Shakespeare

155 Account of the Harleian library

180

190 Essay on the importance of small tracts Preface to the catalogue of the Harleian library, vol. iii.

198 Controversy between Crousaz and Warburton Preliminary discourse to the London Chronicle

206 Introduction to the World Displayed ....

210 Preface to the Preceptor, containing a general plan of education...

231 to Rolt's dictionary.

247 to the translation of father Lobo's voyage to Abyssinia. An essay on epitaphs

259 Preface to an Essay on Milton's Use and Imitation of the Moderns in his Paradise Lost

267 Letter to the Rev. Mr. Douglas, occasioned by his vindication of Milton, &c. By William Lauder, A.M.

271 Testimonies concerning Mr. Lauder......

283 Account of an attempt to ascertain the longitude

295 Considerations on the plans offered for the construction of Blackfriars bridge ..

303 Some thoughts on agriculture, both ancient and modern; with an account of the honour due to an English farmer

310 Further thoughts on agriculture

315 Considerations on the corn laws

321 A complete vindication of the licensers of the stage from the malicious and scandalous aspersions of Mr. Brooke

329

255.

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Protace to the Gentleman's Magazine, 1738

315 An appeal to the publick. From the Gentleman's Magazine, March, 1739 348 Letter on fire-works

352 Proposals for printing, by subscription, Essays in l'erse and Prose, by Anna Williams

354 A project for the employment of authors.

355 Preface to the Literary Magazine, 1756 ...

303 A dissertation

upon
the Greek comedy, translated from Drumoy

366 General conclusion to Brumoy's Greck theatre

114 DJ DICATIONS...

130 Preface to Payne's New Tables of Interest.....

4-18 Thoughts on the coronation of bis majesty king George the thira

151 Preface to the Artists' Catalogue for 1762

159 OLNIONS ON QUESTIONS OF LAW...

161 Considerations on the case of Dr. T[rapp]'s sermons.

402 On school chastisement

467 On vitious intromission..

470 Onlay patronage in the church of Scotland

476 On pulpit censure.

481

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