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Excerpt from European Agriculture and Rural Economy, Vol. 1: From Personal Observation
I have the honor of laying before the public my First Report on European Agriculture and Rural Economy. It has been somewhat delayed beyond the time when it was expected to appear by various unavoidable circumstances, and, among others, by a serious accident by which my health was for some time impaired. I have never approached the bar of public opinion with more diffidence and anxiety; but the kindness heretofore experienced inspires the hope of its continuance, and strengthens my confidence that in an intelligent, I shall find a candid, public. My first report will be, to a considerable degree, miscellaneous, and not so full of that practical information and detail which I design to give hereafter. More than this was not to have been expected; but I trust it will not be found deficient in practical value. Many persons may think that I should particularly point out what is to be learnt from European agriculture; but I understand it to be my province to give an honest account of what I see, premising that there is nothing to be seen from which something may not be learnt, and that it is for others, and not for me, to say what they will learn from that which is placed before them. Where we find ourselves inferior to others, it may be desirable to ascertain how we may reach the excellence to which they have attained; and where the advantage is obviously upon our side, it may be a subject of honest congratulation.
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