Britannia, by William Camden

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Part of the
PREFACE
To the Former
EDITION;

Setting forth the Names of the Persons who assisted therein.

Big A AFTER the Method, the Reader is to be inform’d to whose assistance he owes these Improvements. And this is a justice both to the Persons and to the Work. For, as it is fit that each County should understand to whom it is more particularly oblig’d; so ought it also to be understood by others, that we have not built upon slight grounds, nor deliver’d matters upon trifling informations. Mr. Anthony Etrick communicated what he thought most remarkable in Dorsetshire: as Mr. Worsley of Lincolns-Inn transmitted several Notices relating to Hamshire; Mr. Evelyn, to Surrey; and Mr. Harris to Sussex. The DiscoveriesDr. Tanner, now Chancellor of Norwich. in Wiltshire depend upon the authority of Mr. Tanner, who has made considerable progress in the Antiquities of that County. A Survey of Kent and Middlesex was made upon this occasion by Dr. Plot. The account of the Arsenals for the Royal Navy in Kent, with the Additions to Portsmouth and Harwich, so far as they relate to the Royal Navy, were communicated by Mr. Pepys. From Glocestershire informations were communicated by Dr. Parsons Chancellor of that Church; and from Oxfordshire, by † † Now, Dr. Kennet, Ld. Bp. of Peterborough; who hath since publish’d his Parochial Antiquities.Mr. White Kennet, who will shortly publish the Antiquities of some part of that Country. In settling the ancient Stations in Essex, we were particularly assisted by Mr. Oosley, who ¦ ¦ Since dead.is writing the Antiquities of the whole County; and in the description of Norfolk, by a Survey of that County in * * Now printed, among his Remains.Manuscript, written by Sir Henry Spelman, and now in the Bodleian-Library. Mr. Thomas Newsham of Warwick transmitted several very useful Particulars relating to Warwickshire; and an accurate Account of the Antiquities of Worcestershire was communicated by Dr. ¦ ¦ Since dead.William Hopkins, Prebendary of the Church of Worcester. Some Observations upon the Bishoprick of Durham, were extracted by Mr. Rudd, out of the Postumous Papers of Mr. Mickleton (a curious Antiquary) at the request of the Reverend Mr. † † Since dead.John Smith, a member of that Church; and others were transmitted by Dr. Cay of New-castle. The West-riding of Yorkshire is indebted to Mr. Ralph Thoresby of Leeds, of whose abilities and exactness the large collection of Curiosities he has made himself Master of, is a sufficient argument. In the East-Riding, Mr. John Burnsall of Hull, contributed many things very remarkable; and Dr. Jonston (from whom ¦ we expect the Antiquities of Yorkshire) communicated several particulars throughout that whole County. Westmorland is engag’d to Mr. * * Since dead.Thomas Machel for many useful Discoveries; as its neighbour Cumberland is to Dr. Hugh Todd, Prebendary of the Church of Carlisle: and lastly, Northumberland to * * Since, Bp. of Carlisle, and now of Derry.Mr. William Nicolson, Archdeacon of the same Church, eminent for his knowledge in the Languages and Antiquities of the Northern Nations. The same worthy Person was also pleas’d to improve this Work by observations throughout the whole Province of York, towards the Antiquities whereof he has made large † † Now in the Library of the Dean and Chapter of Carlisle.Collections.

When I tell you, that the whole Care of the Counties of Wales was committed to Mr. Edward Lhwyd, Keeper of the Musæum in Oxford, no one will doubt the justness and accuracy of the Observations. musaeum museum His diligence, and known ability both in Natural History and Antiquities, as they remove all Suspicions of that kind, so † † Since dead.might they do great honour either to his native Country, or to any particular County in England, in which he should meet with Encouragement answerable to the Undertaking.

Nor can the additional Remarks in Scotland be question’d, since they are grounded upon the authority of Sir Robert Sibbalds; whose Natural History already publish’d, and the model he has given us of his intended Antiquities, are a sufficient evidence how great a master he is in the History and Antiquities of that Kingdom. The Remarks upon Ireland were also communicated by a Person very well acquainted with the Affairs of that Kingdom, Sir Richard Cox Knight. ¦¦ Revis’d again by the same hand, for this Edition.

The Catalogues of Plants at the end of each County were communicated by the Great Botanist of our age, Mr. Ray. They are the effect of many years Observation; and that * * Since dead.excellent Person was willing to take this opportunity of handing them to the Publick.

The Verses which occur in Mr. Camden’s Text, were translated by † † Afterwards Dr. Kennet, and Head of that College; but now dead.Mr. Kennet of Corpus Christi College in Oxford. —Of all the Poetry which is quoted by our Author, the Wedding of Tame and Isis runs in the best vein; whether we regard the Thought, or the Composition. Who the Author of it was, is not certainly known; but if we fix upon Mr. Camden himself, I verily believe there will be no occasion for a second Conjecture. One Argument for this, is, that he never names the Author; whereas he could not but know him, since the Poem was publish’d in his own Time. Then, if we compare the subject matter of this Poem with his own Description of the several Places which it touches upon, we shall find them to be much the same. And, which in my opinion puts it beyond all Exception, he never quotes the Poem with any the least Commendation, but always ushers it in with Coldness, Let it not be thought troublesome to run over these Verses If you can relish them — If you vouchsafe to read them — You may read or omit them as you please — Expressions, becoming Mr. Camden’s Modesty when he speaks of himself; but very disagreeable to his known Candour in the Characters of other Men and their Works.—

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Last updated Friday, March 7, 2014 at 13:06