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The object of this Work is to communicate, in a simple form, to the general reader, the chief results of Geological Investigation. No detailed account of par
ticular districts,-no minute statements with regard
to peculiarities of structure exhibited in various formations, or in their fossil contents,--must, therefore, be expected; and, on the other hand, the reader will be spared, as far as possible, the mere technicalities of the Science, while being informed of the views deduced from the study of them.
The Author hopes, that if, in thus endeavouring to communicate definite ideas concerning the Ancient History of the Earth and its Inhabitants, he shall be found not to express with perfect accuracy the whole amount of what is known in every department of Geological Science, his attempt may yet be received
favourably, as a fair sketch of such history, at least in
its broad Outlines.
More than this he does not attempt ; nor would
it be easy so carefully to digest all that is known, and so to harmonise conflicting views, as to satisfy every one on a subject which is still obscure in many important points.