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DISTRICT CLERK'S OFFICE.
DISTRICT OF MASSACHUSETTS, TO WIT:
BE it remembered, That on the eleventh day of June, A. D. 1814, and in the thirty-eighth year of the Independence of the United States of America, Thomas B. Wait and Sons, of the said district, have deposited in this office the title of a book, the right whereof they claim as proprietors in the words following, to wit:
"Sacred Extracts from the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, for the more convenient attainment of a knowledge of the Inspired Writers. For the use of schools. And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation, through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 2 Timothy, iii. 15."
In conformity to the act of the Congress of the United States, intitled "An act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies, during the times therein mentioned;" and also to an act intitled, "An act supplementary to an act, intitled, an act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of Maps, Charts, and Books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies during the times therein mentioned; and extending the benefits thereof to the Arts of Designing, En graving, and Etching Historical, and other Prints."
WILLIAM S. SHAW,
Clerk of the District of Massachusetts.
THOSE Who may consult and use this selection, have rightful claims to an explicit declaration of the principles on which it has been made. This the Editor has no wish to withhold. He solemnly assures the readers of this volume, that in exercising his judgment and taste, respecting the passages best adapted to interest and instruct youth, he has most religiously endeavoured to avoid all bias in favour of any particular sect or opinion. He affects no indifference toward the several schemes, which are professedly derived from the sacred writings; but he conceived that this was not the place to allow his preference and convictions to appear. He has ever come to the task of preparing the copy for the press, under a lively sense that the ground was holy; and he has endeavoured to 'put off all prejudices and
prepossessions. By such as examine it with a similar spirit, he rejoices in the persuasion that uprightness of views and impartiality in execution will be allowed him; and this will, as it ought, be more highly prized than any other commendation.
To his cordial wishes and fervent prayers, that it may prove acceptable and useful to those whose benefit induced the undertaking, THE RISING HOPE OF SOCIETY, he will only add on the importance of the Bible as a school book, the following testimony of one of the greatest and best men whom this country or age has produced: "Its morals are pure, its examples captivating and noble. The reverence for the sacred book, that is thus early impressed, lasts long; and, probably, if not impressed in infancy, never takes firm hold of the mind. One consideration more is important. In no book is there so good English, so pure and so clegant; and by teaching all the same book, they will speak alike, and the Bible will justly remain the standard of language as well as of faith."
It has been found necessary to meet the general demand for a school book, of a moderate price, to reduce the size of this edition. The great purpose, which originally led to forming the selection, has been sacredly kept in view, both in the omissions and the additions. It has ever been the opinion of the Editor, that the sacred Scriptures should be used in schools, and families, as a reading book for youth. Experience united with reflection on the subject, to satisfy him that judicious extracts from the Bible were best adapted to introduce children to an acquaintance with the ORACLES OF GOD. Those portions were taken, which seemed most likely to interest the curiosity, and delight the taste, and affect the heart, in early years; and which were thought peculiarly suitable to be read in classes. Composed as these often are of various ages and different sexes, some inconveniences may result from an indiscriminate reading of the entire volume. But it is not the design to supersede by this compend, the frequent perusal and careful study of the whole. The wish is to excite a
solicitude to obtain, and to become intimately acquainted and perfectly familiar with its history, and doctrines, and laws; to know its truth, imbibe its spirit, feel its power, and partake of its salvation; in a word, to prize in some measure as it deserves, this treasure which is indeed beyond price.
CAMBRIDGE, June, 1814.
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