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Nor did we think it necessary to confine ourselves so entirely to the History of the Life and Times of the Cardinal, as not to introduce, here and there, a short Account of the Lives of several eminent Men, his Cotemporaries; for these we conceived, as they were no unnatural, would consequently be no unpleasing Digressions ; but rather prove so many Reliefs to the Attention of the Reader, which tires when it is conftantly pursuing the fame Tract; but, by making now and then an Excursion, is refreshed and entertain'd with some new, unexpected Prospect ; and therefore returns with so much the more Pleasure to the Path, from which it had been diverted,

: Tho' the general Affairs of Europe are interspersed with those of England, Scotland and Ireland; yet, as we have kept strictly to Order of Time, and placed the Date of the Year in the Margin, the Reader will not be at a loss for the particular Period treated of.

If it should be asked, why we write the History of the Life and Times of this

memo:

memorable Statesman, after the former
had been penn'd by so learned a Man,
and polite a Writer, as Dr. Fiddes ? we
answer, first, because the Doctor him-
self feemed to hint, that the History of
the Affairs of Europe. ought to accom-
pany that of the Life of the Cardinal;
which Defect we have here attempted to
supply :: And next, That we have met
with feveral Pieces relating to Him,
which the Doctor, we presume, had
never seen ;

and with many Au-
thentic Circumstances, that are of Mo-
ment, and have a Tendency to rescue
his, and other Characters from those
unfair Mifrepresentations, under which
they have long laboured, through the
Negligence of some Writers, or the Par-
tiality of others, who have given too
much into the common Tract of Preju-
dices, without a juft Regard to real his-
toricalTruth. Whether, on the other hand,
we have been as partial in favouring, as
they have been severe in censuring; or,
whether we have kept clear of all unrea-
sonable, and unjust Prejudices and Pre-
poffeffions, must be left to the Judg-

ment

ment of such Readers, as are themselves void of them.

It is a Qualification most indispensably requisite in an Historian, that he be a Writer of Truth, to which he ought always to pay the strictest Regard in every thing he relates ; that he have no Prejudice to byass him, either for or against the Person whose History he is writing ; that he have not the least Inclination, either to disguise his Vices, or to diminish his Virtues ; either to contract or lessen his Merit, or to magnify and stretch it beyond its just Proportion. It is thro' this Medium we have endeavoured to steer in compiling this History

For we declare with Mr.Echard, “That « we have used our best Endeavours to « follow the strict Rules of Sincerity « and Judgment, the two superior Guides " to an Historian. As to the former, « which includes or implies Impartia

lity, we may insist upon that without “ the Breach of Modesty, and declare " that we are not conscious to ourselves “ of any Deviation from Truth and real

" Fact.

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“ Fact. We are sensible of the mighty

Difficulty in some Cases of discovering « Truth, and of knowing it when it “ is discovered; and therefore beg that « some Allowances may be made. For

a striet Impartiality is so rare a Quality. in some Writers of History, that many are ready to think, that an im

partial Historian is not a Man to be « found in the World ; and some car“ ry it further, and say, that, consider“ ing human Infirmities, it is impossi“ ble to be really impartial. But while " there are such things in the World

as Truth and Honesty, undoubted

ly there may be an impartial Histo“ rian, as well as an impartial Judge, “ who can certainly give Sentence ac

cording to his Conscience and Judg

ment, tho' contrary to his Defires « and Inclinations.”

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i The Head of the CARDINAL, to be the

Frontispiece. 2 Marquis of DORSET,

Page 48 3 HENRY VII.

84 PERKIN WARBECK,

126 5 CHARLES VIII. King of France, 178 6 CÆSAR BORGIA,

225 JAMES IV.King of Scotland, [Sig.Mm]273 8

360 9

View of Richmond, and the OLD PALACE, 250

COLUMBUS,

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