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EDINBURGH: WAUGH AND INNES,

BOOKSELLERS TO HIS MAJESTY;
LONDON: JAMES NISBET AND CO.

MDCCCXXXVL

708.

Balfour & Jack, Printers, Niddry Street, Edinburgh.

TO

HER ROYAL HIGHNESS

THE PRINCESS VICTORIA.

IN VENTURING TO WRITE ON THE SUBJECT

OF

FEMALE EDUCATION AND CHARACTER,

IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO POINT OUT A MORE EXALTED MODEL,

FOR THE

IMITATION AND ATTACHMENT OF HER YOUTHFUL COTEMPORARIES,

THAN THE AMIABLE AND ACCOMPLISHED PRINCESS

TO WHOM THESE PAGES

ARE RESPECTFULLY DEDICATED,

BY HER MOST FAITHFUL AND MOST OBEDIENT SERVANT,

CATHERINE SINCLAIR.

PREFACE.

Nothing can be more injurious to a good cause than an indiscreet partisan ; and all men are eager to repress, if possible, or to disown his officious zeal. With the best intention, such a person excites prejudice against the very individuals whom he is desirous to extol, and testifies his attachment for them in the manner most offensive to their taste, and injurious to their interests. Religion, more especially, has been exposed, without defence, to injury, from well-meaning, but imprudent and intrusive friends. In the eye of indiscriminating Christians, any strong profession of attachment to Christianity sheds a sacred halo around the character, which deprives them of the courage to appreciate it by the ordinary standard. This readiness to acquiesce in hasty and unfounded pretensions, has been the source of incalculable mischief; because the careless multitude are misled into forming their estimate of Christian excellence from the perverted judgment and glaring indiscretion of a few confident professors ; and faults of natural character, on a hasty view, seem identified with those holy principles, which, if rightly understood, would infallibly correct them.

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