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BY THE EDITOR.
AS biography is a species of history which record * the lives and characters of remarkable persons it consequently becoines an interesting subjeci, arid is of general utility. It would be but fair to assert, that alinust every civilized nation on the globe has, at one period or other, produced distinguished inds viduals in various stations of life.
Mr. Jefferson, the President of the United States of Anicrica, in his “ Notes on Virginia," thus speaks in answer to the assertion of the Abbé Raynal, inal “An:erica has not yet produced one gond poel, one able mathematician, one mal of genius, in a single art, or a single science."--" When we shall have exististed as a nation," says Ms. J. “as long as the Greeks did before they produced a Homer, the Romans a Virgil, the French a Kacine aoci Voltaire, the Englisa & Shakespeare and Milton, should this reproach be still true, we will ingurire fom what infriendly causes it has proceeded, inat the other countries of Europe and quarters of the earth shall not have inscribed any name in the roll of poets. In war we nave produced a Washington, whose memory will be adorea whil liberty shall have votaries; whose name will triun.ph over iiine, and will in future ages assume its just station among the most celebrated worthies of the world, when that wretched philosophy shall be for gutten which would arrange him among the degene racies of nature. In physics, we have producer a FRANKLIN, than u nom no one of the present age has made more important discoveries, nor has enricher philosophy with more, or more ingenious solutions of the phenomena of nature. We have supposed Mr. Ritienhouse second to no astronomer living; that in genius he inust be the first, because he is selftaught," &c.
In philosophy, England can boast of a Bacon tho most eminent professor in this science the worlu has over produced. The Essays of this great writer » one of the best proofs we can adduce of his tran scendent abilities; and America claims the enlighte ened FRANKLIN, a man who has not left his equal behind him, and whose Life and Writings are the sube ject of the following sheets.
To say more in this place of our Author, would be anticipating what is hereafter mentioned : it will therefore only be necessary in add, that due atten tion has been paid in the selection of such of his pro ductious as may be adapted to general perusal.