Page:An Essay on the Age and Antiquity of the Book of Nabathaean Agriculture.djvu/123

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PREFACE.

 


 

In reproducing this discourse, it is a pleasing duty to me to express my thanks to the kind and enlightened audience, which, perceiving with much tact that it involved a question of liberty, upheld me during its delivery. To interrupt an intellectual exercise at which one is not compelled to be present, appears to me, at all times, to be an illiberal action; it is to oppose oneself with violence to the opinion of another; to confound two things, totally distinct: the admitted right of fault-finding, according to liking or conscience; and the pretended right of stifling, by one’s own authority, notions which are looked upon as objectionable. Who does not see that this last pretension is the source of all violence and all oppression?