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[iii]

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INTRODUCTION. The present little volume would never have been obtruded upon the public, but for the recent efforts of the Roman clergy of Bardstown to ruin the author by a civil suit for a pretended libel upon the character of a priest. Providentially located in Bardstown several years since, he found Popery in power there. The Roman clergy, by means of the number of their adherents, their wealth, their literary institutions and their political power, exerted an almost irresistible influence. Circumstances made It his duty to deliver several lectures in defence of Protestantism, which had so long been misrepresented by them. This step on his part brought down upon him the wrath of the establishment. A controversy of considerable length ensued. They linally retired from the public discussion, a"d published against him a very abusive book, under a fictitious signature. Soon after this, they commenced the publication of the Catholic Advocate in Bardstown. In self-defence, he thought it necessary also to publish a paper. He therefore commenced the publication of the Western Protestant, a paper which ho still edits. Several articles published in the Protestant, concerning a Nun who had disappeared under suspicious circumstances, afforded the priests an opportunity, which they greedily embraced, to injure him by a civil suit. The principal