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LONDON:

R. CLJY, PRINTER, BREAD-STREET-HILL.

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PRE FACE.

The only duty which now devolves upon the Author, is to offer a few brief observations respecting a work which, after three years' uninterrupted progress, he has now the satisfaction of laying before the public. The illustration of Scotland was first suggested by the very flattering reception given to its predecessor, “SWITZERLAND ILLUSTRATED;" and the result has been a similar manifestation of public favour. To secure this patronage, and to give the work every recommendation which the highest professional talent could bestow, no expense has been spared, no encouragement withheld on the part of the Proprietors. In its now complete form, the work comprises one hundred and twentyone highly finished engravings on steel, from original drawings, chiefly by Mr. Allom and Mr. Bartlett, whose united talents are too widely known and appreciated to require further mention in this place. With the exception of Dunrobin Castle,* and Cape Wrath, every view was taken on the spot, and transferred to the steel plates with a force and fidelity which reflect the greatest credit on the engravers.

With respect to the literary department, the Author has only to observe, that he is far from insensible to the more than common indulgence with which, in its detached portions, the work has been already received. Like the sculptor, who should undertake to reduce a colossal statue into infantine proportions—and yet preserve the force and expression of the original-he undertook the task of reducing the gigantic features of Scotland into a miniature resemblance of the whole; and, whatever may have been his success, he has at least spared no labour to surmount the difficulties it involved, and will be the first to congratulate his more successful competitors in the same field. Scotland has still innumerable scenes to engage the best services of the pen and pencil, and she has those, also, among her own sons who have done, and will continue to do, her justice.

*

The beautiful view of Dunrobin,-including the recent additions, and the newly erected Monument on Benbhraggie,—was obligingly furnished by Her Grace the Duchess-Countess of Sutherland, by whom it had also the advantage of being seen, and revised, during its progress through the hands of the painter and engraver. The view of Cape Wrath was painted from original drawings in the possession of James Loch, Esq. M.P.

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In the mean time, both Author and Artist will think themselves fortunate if, by their own united labours, they have here opened a path by which her Lowland and Celtic landscapes may be more full explored and illustrated.

In the text which accompanies these illustrations, the reader is not to expect a mere artificial description of every particular scene represented. In Scotland, as in Switzerland, the most "classic" ground is not always the best suited for pictorial display, and vice versá. In travelling, therefore, over the same district, it has often been found impossible for the pen and the pencil to keep pace with each other; for the same field that is barren of every picturesque feature, may be rich, nevertheless, in every patriotic recollection : and thus, where the engraving has been allowed to speak for itself, the text has been occupied in filling up the moral picture from history and tradition. Restricted, however, to certain limits, the Author has been studious to condense his materials; and, where he could not introduce the entire picture, to avail himself of those particular features to which it was chiefly indebted for its peculiar tone, colour, and character. Under the frowning precipice, the shattered fastness, or on the battle heath-wherever, in short, the scene spoke most loudly of the inborn feelings and sympathies of the people, he has lingered with pardonable fondness for the shadowy existence of former days, but still, he hopes, with becoming regard to the picturesque character of the work.

In acknowledging the merits and services of his foreign coadjutors, the Author is bound to offer his testimony in favour of the German and French translations by John Von Horn, D.D., and Monsieur De Bauclas, who have transferred this, and his other Works, into their respective languages with taste, spirit, and fidelity. In conclusion, there is still one fact connected with these Works that can hardly fail to interest the public-namely, that, for the completion of “ SCOTLAND" alone, nearly forty thousand pourds have been already expended; and it cannot be otherwise than gratifying to know that, in their various departments, these Volumes have been the means of stimulating native talent ; of bringing obscure merit into notice; and of providing, during the progress of publication, upwards of a thousand families and individuals with regular employment. The fact cannot be too generally known, that the patronage bestowed on illustrated works of this class, is not so much calculated to benefit the few who are responsible, as the many through whose hands they must necessarily pass before they are in a condition to meet the public eye.

TENTERDEN STREET, HANOVER SQUARE,

October, 1837.

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