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IN laying before the Public the Fourth Volume of this collec
tion, the Editor cannot refrain from expreffing his grateful sense of the encouragement with which the former volumes have been honoured---a fimilar degree of encouragement he hopes the prefent volume will be found to merit. He has drawn his materials from the best sources, and collected the papers, of which the volume is compofed, from the most authentic records. He has endeavoured to combine accuracy of detail with clearness of arrangement, and has attempted to execute his translations with that fidelity which is fo peculiarly neceffary in a work that afpires to the character of being official, Several of the papers have never appeared in any other publication in this country---of others, mutilated copies only have been published, which have of courfe led to very material errors; and these the Editor has diligently laboured to restore to their original meaning.
It was his intention to have brought the prefent volume to the clofe of the last year only---but yielding to the fuggestions of feveral gentlemen, who reprefented to him, that it would be more acceptable to the public to poftpone it till there was a fufficient quantity of materials to form a volume, he was induced to include the Parliamentary Papers to the diffolution in May laft, and the other documents, to the present time.
The frequent references that have been made to the prefent Conftitution of the French Republic have induced him to include it in the prefent collection. There have already appeared in this country, copies of the Conftitution, as submitted by the Commiffion of Eleven to the National Convention---but confiderable alterations having been made in the plan of the Commiffion, he obtained from Paris a correct copy of the Conftitution, as it was finally decreed by the Convention, and accepted by the French Nation.
23d July, 1796,