18. Mr. Apthorpe
A Vindication by Edward Gibbon

If I am not mistaken, Mr. Apthorpe was the first who announced to the Public his intention of examining the interesting subject which I had treated in the Two last Chapters of my History. The multitude of collateral and accessary ideas which presented themselves to the Author, insensibly swelled the bulk of his papers to the size of a large volume in octavo; the publication was delayed many months beyond the time of the first advertisement; and when Mr. Apthorpe's Letters appeared, I was surprised to find, that I had scarcely any interest or concern in their contents. They are filled with general observations on the Study of History, with a large and useful catalogue of Historians, and with a variety of reflections, moral and religious, all preparatory to the direct and formal consideration of my Two last Chapters, which Mr. Apthorpe seems to reserve for the subject of a Second Volume. I sincerely respect the learning, the piety, and the candour of this Gentleman, and must consider it as a mark of his esteem, that he has thought proper to begin his approaches at so great a distance from the fortifications which he designed to attack.

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