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fusion, instead of helping the reader. The plan of arranging matter according to subjects has its advantages, but it is considered that what might be gained in this way would be outweighed by the disadvantages of a system under which the reader would be obliged to look through half-a-dozen volumes to find one piece of information relating to a particular day in a particular year. It is believed that by printing the Records in chronological order, and giving with each volume a comprehensive Index, the Records will be of greater value for purposes of reference than if they were dealt with under separate heads.
As the papers given in these volumes form the basis of the Official History which is published concurrently, they are presented without comment, and without any attempt to explain the story they tell. The proper place for description, analysis, and comment is the History itself. The Records are given here as they were found, and they speak for themselves. Where it has been considered necessary to explain the relation of papers to each other, or to give information concerning persons and places, as an aid to the reader in studying the Records, the Editor has written the necessary notes, which are printed at the foot of the page, but no alteration of the text has been made in any case. Errors of composition and spelling are allowed to go without correction ; in a word, the Records as printed are literal transcripts of the originals. This is the plan now generally adopted in the reproduction of manuscripts ; indeed no other course could be pursued without mutilating the originals, and depriving them of their historic value.
It will be noticed in examining the Records from 1783 to 1789 that duplicates are given of some of the documents printed in Vol. I of the Official History. It was impossible to avoid this repetition. The Records stand by themselves, and they must be given intact. For this reason, the documents published in Vol. I of the History have been reprinted ; in future issues, however, repetitions will not occur. In the Historical Records will be found the full text of the papers; in the History they will be digested and explained. The writer of Vol. I made such use of the manuscripts as the space at his disposal allowed; the broader plan now adopted gives the simple facts in one set of volumes and the historical narrative in another. In this way the full Records will appear in print, while the History will not be burdened by long extracts and quotations. It is believed that by the adoption of this course the convenience of the reader will be consulted and the object which the Government has in view carried into effect.
The papers which form the Second Part of the First Volume of the Historical Records begin with August, 1783, when the establishment of a convict settlement in New South Wales became for the first time a matter of serious consideration with the English Government, and end with December, 1792, when Phillip, the first Governor of the colony, left Sydney on his return to England.* The manuscripts reproduced here represent a period of nine years and four months. During the first three years proposals and suggestions were under consideration, eight months were occupied in making preparations for the departure of the First Fleet of transports, and the voyage took up eight months. The remainder of the time, rather more than five years, belongs to the actual history of the Colony.
The papers cover a great deal of ground. They relate to the proposals which led to the adoption of a plan under which New
* Phillip applied for a year's leave of absence in April, 1790 (post, pp. 329, 330). He renewed the request on the 25th March, 1791, on the ground of ill-health (post, pp. 483, 481). On the 21st November, 1791, he wrote to Lord Grenville, requesting permission to resign the Government, so that he might return to England, "in hopes of finding that relief which this country does not afford” (post, p. 559). The reply to this communication, which came from the Right Hon. Henry Dundas, who had succeeded Lord Grenville at the Home Office, did not arrive until the 7th October, 1792, but as permission to retire was not expressly granted, Phillip waited for more definite instructions, which, however, do not seem to have reached him. He sailed for England on the 11th December, 1792, leaving Major Grose, the LieutenantGovernor, in charge. Soon after returning to England aly, 1793) he formally resigned the Governorship, on the ground that he suffered from a complaint which could not be properly treated in the Colony.