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104 Bunyan (John), Pilgrim's Progress, a
first, (and was retained in all subsequent ones), as being necessary to complete the sense of that part of the book in which it occurs.
The illustrations, however rude, are highly curious and interesting, and serve to show by what primitive pictorial representations the early readers of the immortal allegory were helped to realize some of its stirring scenes. These woodcuts, like the other features of the book, have been reproduced in fac-simile.
The complete disappearance of the first edition, all but one copy, may not perhaps, indicate the exact measure of avidity with which the book was taken up; but the subsequent history of the work leaves no doubt as to the effectual manner in which the fertile ground of English religious sentiment absorbed the first seeds cast abroad by the homely Bunyan; and, at all events, those seeds produced such a plentiful crop that it were futile now to attempt to compute how many millions of copies of the world-renowned allegory have been read and thumbed and pondered over in the course of the last two centuries.