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HAVING, in the year seventeen hundred and seventy-six, put forth A HISTORY OF Music, in five volumes quarto (which buy), notwithstanding my then avocations as Justice of the Peace for the county of Middlesex and city and liberty of Westminster; I, Sir John Hawkins, of Queen Square, Westminster, Knight, do now, being still of sound health and understanding, esteem it my bounden duty to step forward as Editor and Reviser of THE PROBATIONARY ODES. My grand reason for undertaking so arduous a task is this: I do from my soul believe that Lyric Poetry is the own, if not twin sister of Music; wherefore, as I had before gathered together every thing that any way
relates to the one, with what consistency could I forbear to collate the best effusions of the other?-I should premise, that in volume the first of my quarto History, chap. i. page 7, I lay it down as a principle never to be departed from, that "The Lyre is the prototype of the fidicinal species." And accordingly I have therein discussed at large, both the origin, and various improvements of the Lyre, from the Tortoise-shell scooped and strung by Mercury on the banks of the Nile, to the Testudo, exquisitely polished by Terpander, and exhibited to the Ægyptian Priests. I have added also many choice engravings of the various antique Lyres, viz. the Lyre of Goats-horns, the Lyre of Bulls-horns, the Lyre of Shells, and the Lyre of both Shells and Horns compounded; from all which, 1 flatter myself, I have indubitably proved the Lyre to be very far superior to the shank-bone of a crane, or any other Pipe, Fistula, or Calamus, either of Orpheus's or Linus's invention; ay, or even the best of those pulsatile instruments, commonly known by the denomination of the drum.
Forasmuch, therefore, as all this was fi