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PRINTED FOR J. MURRAY, N° 32, FLEET-STREET;

AND W. CREECH, EDINBURGH.

1788.

P R E F À CE..

T HE eight letters, twelve fonnets, and

I two marriage-contracts which either in their subscriptions, in their composition, 'or in both, have been attributed to the pen of the unfortunate Mary, and on which principally is founded all the slander that has been raised against her, have been as singular in their fortune as they are in their nature. Suspected for forgeries by numbers, at the time of their original appearance; and condemned equally by numbers, for certain forgeries ; they gained by degrees upon the good opinion of the public, till they nearly came at last into the full poffefsion of it. In this kind of pre-eminence they continued to our own days. They carried a commanding boldness in their air and manner. And nothing imposes more readily upon the easy faith of the world, than the bold testimony of a confident witness.

... VOL. I.

The

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