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Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1871, by
J. B. LIPPINCOTT & CO.,
I THINK it right, in giving this volume to the world, to say that it was fully prepared for the press by my father in 1862,two years before his decease,—and that its publication has been delayed by circumstances over which I had no control.
PHILADELPHIA, 15 February, 1871.
A DELAY of forty-five years in issuing this publication can be ascribed with justice only to the exigencies of professional, and the duties of public life.
Nor do I regret the delay. Numerous changes in the plan first formed have been calmly considered and adopted. Immense piles of correspondence were subjected to repeated winnowing. The desire to simplify and compress as much as a distinct development of character could authorize, increased. with the lapse of time.
Some of the letters to and from Mr. Dallas are incorporated' in the text, furnishing, as they do, the best possible insights into particular periods of his life, and connected, as they are, with events of the day. Those of Mr. Madison and Mr. Duponceau are set apart as entitled to separate preservation, because they were revised and returned to me by their respective writers with that view.
So also, as illustrating argumentative and oratorical powers, extracts are made from certain speeches, more or less ample, as perspicuity or the importance of the subject seemed to require; but no formal collection of innumerable and brilliant displays at the bar is attempted. Such a collection, wbile it could have but little general interest, would necessarily lead into a labyrinth of detail.