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THOMAS WILLIAM COKE, ESQ.
THE PERSONAL AND POLITICAL FRIEND
OF THE LATE
OF THE COUNTY OF NORFOLK,
OF AGRICULTURAL IMPROVEMENTS,
THE RESOLUTE OPPOSER
OF INTOLERANCE, CORRUPTION, AND UNNECESSARY WAR;
A GENTLEMAN IN HIS MANNERS AND SPIRIT,
A CHRISTIAN IN FAITH AND PRACTICE,
THE FOLLOWING PAGES
ARE MOST RESPECTFULLY DEDICATED,
BY HIS SINCERE WELL-WISHER,
AND MUCH-OBLIGED HUMBLE SERVANT,
It was thought by some friends of Mr. Fox that a collection of the best written Characters * which had been drawn of him soon after his death, would not be unacceptable to the public. Those which are here presented to the reader have been selected from many others with the utmost impartiality. They were written by men of different parties, and perhaps even to distant generations they will not be wholly uninteresting, by the views which they exhibit of Mr. Fox's merits or demerits, as they were estimated by some of his intelligent contemporaries.
The Editor has exercised his own judgment in republishing the whole, or what appeared to him the more important parts, of the articles which he found in newspapers, in periodical works, in sermons, and even in poems, where the name of Mr. Fox was incidentally introduced. Remembering the ingenuous and artless mind of Mr. Fox himself, the Editor has excluded some complimentary statements, which, upon careful enquiry, he had reason to believe unsupported by facts. He thought it his duty to incorporate frequent com
* Vide Advertisement, p. 3.
mendations of Mr. Pitt. He has not refused admission to many censures upon Mr. Fox. But he has rejected all coarse and acrimonious invectives, because he was convinced that they would be disgusting alike to the warm admirers and the honourable opponents of that illustrious statesman. He supposes that, by anonymous writers, no offence will be taken at his endeavours to give additional notoriety to compositions, the selection of which is a proof that his own mind was not unfavourably impressed with the propriety of the matter, or the graces of the style. He trusts too that his excellent friends Dr. Symmons and Mr. Belshamn will excuse him for having made some extracts from judicious and elegant discourses which they delivered from the pulpit, and afterwards committed to the press.
The character of Mr. Fox which some years ago appeared in the Preface to Bellendenus de Statu, is inserted with the permission of the author, and the same person is to be considered as the writer both of the Letter and the Notes which are placed at the conclusion of the work. Having separated several quotations from classical authors, and several remarks upon Mr. Fox himself, from the text of that Letter, and having thrown them into Notes, the writer did not choose to disturb the epistolary form in which they had been originally prepared ; and, for the sake of consistency, he preserved the same form in all the additional Notes.
It is unnecessary to state, that his observations upon our Penal Code were suggested to him by