of jocofe and pleasant Pieces, I was advifed to infert a judicious Set of Speeches spoken in Parliament by fome of our most celebrated Statesmen and Senators. I have often wondered indeed, that fince our Neighbouring Nations have thought it convenient for the Inftru&tion of their Youth, to publish a felect Collection of the beft Speeches out of Livy, Sallust, Tacitus, Qu. Curtius, and other eminent Authors, none of our Countrymen have either had the inclination or leifure, to make fuch a Delectus, out of our own great Masters of Eloquence, than which nothing cou'd be more advantageous to our young Gentlemen, to instruct them, how to exprefs themselves juftly and hanfomely in any great Affemblies, to which they may be called. Not to revive the Quarrel between the Ancients and the Moderns I am intirely of the Opinion, that we have not fallen much fhort of them upon these Occafions; and as for our Rivals the French, who pretend to carry the Prize of Eloquence from all the World befides, I would only defire any unprejudiced Reader to compare their most celebrated Compofitions, with what he will find in this Mifcellany, to the Honour of our Constitution be it faid, which allows our Members of Parliament to express themselves with that Liberty and Vigour, which is wholly unknown to all other Governments: I dare maintain, that my Lord Falkland, and fome few of his contemporaries in the long Parlia


ment, my Lord Bristol, my Lord Chancellor Hyde, &c. have deliver'd in those Affemblies, Difcourfes as full of Warmth and Spirit, purity of Language, and juftnefs of Reasoning, as ever Athens or Rome were known to produce, in the most flourishing Periods of thofe two famous Republicks. I have a proper occafion here to mention fome worthy Gentlemen now alive, who are in no refpect inferiour to their Predeceffors? But the wife Observation of Paterculus hinders me from dwelling upon fo inviting a Subject, who checks me with Vivorum ut magna admiratio, ita Cenfura difficilis.

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To relieve the Reader, I thought it not amifs to entertain him with two or three facetious Speeches, written by the late Loyal and Witty Sir J. Berkenhead, in the time of that long unnatural. Rebellion, fathered upon Alderman Atkins, and others. As they were out of Print, and hardly to be found any where, but in a few Libraries, I was eafily perfwaded to retrieve such valuable Papers from the unworthy Oblivion they had fo long been buried under.

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