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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1847, by
Wm. CROSBY & H. P. Nichols,
in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the District of Massachusetts.
I HAVE endeavoured in the following pages to preserve, as much as was in my power, an exact justice between the two parties; to present the bigoted age, the limited views, the deep provocation, and the stern justice of our forefathers in their dealings with the Quakers ; while, on the other hand, I have not concealed the audacity, the determined perseverance, and the spiritual pride of those illiterate Quaker women who came to this country as much to gain notoriety as from a sincere desire for martyrdom. That such was the case in particular instances in no degree impairs the simple and
sublime truth of the Quaker doctrine of "the inward light.”
Although some of the actors are fictitious, no incident is introduced touching the Quakers that did not actually occur in the years through which the events of my story pass.
The incidents are real; but that I have preserved the costume and the coloring of the age, I can scarcely hope. To some persons, I am aware, no picture of a particular time, which does not reproduce the exact language and manners of the period, can have much value. Such an attempt requires a long and familiar practice, or a higher order of genius than I can pretend to possess.
I have aspired only to take up a humble position upon that which Scott calls the extensive neutral ground of manners and sentiments that are common to us and our ancestors, arising out of the principles of our common nature and existing alike in both states of society. The difficulty of reproducing even