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ALEXANDER CROMBIE, Esq.
In token of RESPECT AND GRATITUDE,
HIS MUCH OBLIGED HUMBLE SERVANT,
IF little learning, and less opportunity for study, give authors a right to the indulgence of their readers, few would have stronger claims to it than the author of this volume. He is aware, however, that this plea can seldom be admissible. For though want of learning may account sufficiently for a person's ill success in literary pursuits, it can afford no apology for his presumption in laying his productions before the public. The author of the following pieces, therefore, expects no clemency on this score. Neither would he be thought to insinuate that he possesses natural talents sufficient to make amends for the defects of his education; this would argue a
degree of vanity, which he trusts will never be imputed to him. But he humbly conceives that he would be justly chargeable with want of respect to his readers, were he to acknowledge himself destitute of every qualification for a task which was voluntarily undertaken. It is evident he thinks his productions possess some merit, otherwise he could have had no inducement to publish them; if, however, the public should find them altogether unworthy of favour, he will humbly bow to its decision. He has found the amusement derived from the composition of them a sufficient compensation for the trouble they have cost him; and the neglect of them by the public cannot, therefore, prove a source of great disappointment.
ABERDEEN, April, 1827.