From the general tenour of the explanations here given, it will perhaps be inferred that the perfection of the Atlas has been the principal object of concern; in fact, having no pretension to authorship, the writing of the narrative, though by much the most troublesome part of my labour, was not that upon which any hope of reputation was founded; a polished style was therefore not attempted, but some pains have been taken to render it clearly intelligible. The first quire of my manuscript was submitted to the judgment of a few literary friends, and I hope to have profited by the corrections they had the kindness to make; but finding these to bear more upon redundancies than inaccuracy of expression, I determined to confide in the indulgence of the public, endeavour to improve as the work advanced, and give my friends no further trouble. Matter, rather than manner, was the object of my anxiety; and if the reader shall be satisfied with the selection and arrangement, and not think the information destitute of such interest as might be expected from the subject, the utmost of my hopes will be accomplished.
N. B. Throughout this narrative the variation has been allowed upon the bearings, and also in the direction of winds, tides, &c; the whole are therefore to be considered with reference to the true poles of the earth, unless it be otherwise particularly expressed; and perhaps in some few cases of the ship's head when variations are taken, where the expression by compass, or magnetic, may have been omitted.