Page:Fasti ecclesiae Anglicanae Vol.1 body of work.djvu/29

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PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION.

IN as few words as possible, I beg leave to inform my readers, that some few years ago, having more leisure time than I was willing to spend in idleness, I formed a scheme of a work, partly of the like nature as what I now present to their view, but not at that time intended half so voluminous, as not designing to have begun higher than from the date of the late glorious Revolution.

When (some time after) I waited on some of the right reverend lords the bishops, to inform them of my design, their lordships were pleased to give their opinion, that I should lay aside that work as altogether needless, the alterations therein to be expressed being so recent in every one's memory, and with several other reasons, prevailed with me not only so to do, but likewise to attempt a task which at that time appeared much more difficult to me.

One reason which their lordships were pleased to encourage me with was, the consideration that the succession of the prelates of this kingdom, so excellently done by the right reverend Francis Godwin, late lord bishop of Llandaff and Hereford, had not been deduced lower than the year 1616, or thereabouts, (except in a little book[1], which mentions only the plain names and dates of the year;) and afterwards, on a further consideration, that the said account by bishop Godwin was become scarce, and no declared intention of reprinting it, their lordships excited me to make a short

  1. Continuation of Heylin's Help to History, 12mo.