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Inclination, or to publish them, as are contrary to your Modelty. Otherwise your Fame and your Property fuffer alike; you are at once exposed and plundered. As an Author, you are deprived of that Power, which above all others constitutes a good one, the power of rejecting, and the right of judging for yourself, what pieces it may be most useful, entertaining, or reputable to publish, at the time and in the manner you think beft. . As a Man, you are deprived of the right even over your own Sentiments, of the privilege of every human creature to divulge or conceal them ; of the advantage of your Second thoughts ; and of all the benefit of your Prudence, your Candour, or your Modesty. As a Member of Society, you are yet more injured ; your private conduct, your domestic concerns, your family secrets, your passions, your tendernesses, your weaknesses, are exposed to the Misconstruction or Resentment of some, to the Censure or Impertinence of the whole world. The printing private letters in fuch a manner, is the worst sort of betraying Conversation, as it has evidently the most extensive, and the most lasting, ill consequences. Is is the higheit offence against Society, as it renders the most dear and intimate intercourse of friend with friend, and the most necessary commerce of man with man, unfafe and to be dreaded. To open Letters is esteemed the greatest breach of honour ; even to look into them already opened or accidentally dropt, is held



an ungenerous, if not an immoral act. What then can be thought of the procuring them merely by Fraud, and the printing them merely for Lucre?: We cannot but conclude every honest man will wish, that if the Laws have as yet provided no adequate remedy, one at least may be found, to prevent fo great and growing an evil.

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