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PREFACE.

IT having fallen to my lot to visit, in very early life; the extraordinary people whose Mythology I heir endeavour to explain, and to remain among them, in situations frequently favourable to the acquisition of information, until lately, I take the liberty of offering to the Public this Work, the result, of my observations and inquiries.

During an intercourse of many years, with natives-of almost every description, I often, in conversation on interesting topics, found myself at a loss in comprehending certain terms and allusions, and in seeking what I required; and frequently experienced the utility of pictures and visible objects in directing me in both hence I began to collect pictures and images, which in the progress of years, without being particularly valuable as a selection, have accumulated to a considerable extent.

Conceiving that the possession of such objects may be of similar use in guiding the inquirer to sources of information that might not otherwise offer, and be agreeable at the same time to those in search of amusement chiefly, I have,caused many of these subjects to be accurately copied, and engraved by hands eminent in their respective lines. The greatest attention has been paid by the ingenious artist (Mr. Haughton of the Royal Academy) in taking the portraits of the images and the drawings of the pictures for my plates; which may be relied on as faithful representations of the original subjects; and will, I hope, be deemed curious in themselves, as well as possessing, in many instances, a highly creditable portion of elegance in their execution.