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P R E FACE.

BY an act of the General Asembly of Virginia, dated December 28th, 1792,

it was ordained, that a collection should be made of all such acts of the Ar, sembly, of a public and permanent nature, as were then in force. For this

purpose, several lawyers were solicited to superintend the compilation. Mr. Da, vis, then printer to the Commonwealth, did not get the work completed 'till the close of the year 1794. It, therefore, embraced all such laws, of a public and permanent nature, as were passed during the session, which commenced November 11th, 1794,

It was unavoidably to happen that this collection would almost immediately become defective ; and that its defects were to increase annually, and without intermission. The new laws of the more important class were, for the most part, occupied in altering, or in repealing some of their predecessors. Hence, it was evident, that if a man of business was not regularly supplied with the additional laws, the Revised Code would be quite as likely to lead him into miltakes, as to give him proper information. The consequence was, that every practitioner of the law found ic necessary to purchase, annually, the large folio pamphlet, containing the laws of each fucceeding affembly. In the course of a man's life, these publications would have swelled into a library; and, what was extremely inconvenient, by far the greater part of them were laws of a local and private nature, which were totally useless, and a mere incumbrance to the practitioner in a court.

This Revised Code, with all its augmenting imperfections, had become extremely scarce. The original price was eight dollars. But it was almost impoflible to obtain the book at any price whatever. The constant demand for the Revised Code induced the propriecors of the present work to publish proposals for a second, and iinproved edition, which was to bring down the collection so late as to the end of the session of December, 1801. In the former

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