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I have endeavoured to reproduce Gracian's Laconism and Cultismo in my version, and have even tried to retain his many paronomasias and jingles of similar sound. I may have here and there introduced others of my own to redress the balance for cases where I found it impossible to produce the same effect in English. In such cases I
generally give the original in the Notes. Wherever possible I have replaced Spanish proverbs and proverbial phrases by English ones,
and have throughout tried to preserve the characteristic rhythm and brevity of the Proverb. In short, if I may venture to say so, I have approached my task rather in the spirit of Fitzgerald than of Bohn.
The gem on the title, representing a votive offering to Hermes, the god of Worldly Wisdom, is from a fine paste in the British Museum of the best period of Greek glyptic art. I have to thank Mr. Cecil
Smith of that Institution for kind advice in the selection.
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