Author of this book gladly welcomes the appearance of an English translation of so satisfactory a character. At the same time it may be well to remind the English reader that this is a history of an English institution written by a foreigner and intended for the use of foreigners. Difficulties must arise in any attempt to judge the institutions of other countries and to form an opinion with regard to advisable reforms. The task is especially hard in the case of a country like England, where more attention is paid to facts than to theories. Hence with respect to various questions, especially some arising towards the end of the work, when I have been unable to support my own views by the opinions of an English authority, I have chosen rather to confine myself to a statement of the facts than to set forth theories which might be disproved by subsequent events. Moreover, in writing for French readers, I have described various matters and in particular historical events, the discussion of which may perhaps be superfluous for English readers.
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