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To my Grandchildren
JUDITH AND ERIC, and to all my other grandchildren whose names have not yet appeared in print,
I DEDICATE THIS Book. I think I ought to have dedicated this, in all probability my last book, to my old friend CLARK Russell, for he it was who first tempted me into print. I wrote some letters which appeared in The Fishing Gazette, and therefrom proceeded in course of time my first little book, An Amateur Angler's Days in Dove Dale. I owe my old friend a debt of gratitude for many a kind mark of friendship since that time, and not the least for his having done me the honour of dedicating one of his charming novels to me; but I am sure he will pardon me for not dedicating this volume to him, firstly, because it is not worthy of him, and, secondly, because there would have been a little tempest among my grandchildren. “Mind, Grandpa," said pretty Judith, shaking her finger at me—"remember!!” The worst of the business is, there is such lot of these grandchildren, who, because I have already printed the names of two or three of them in my books, consider themselves to be slighted because they have not had books dedicated to them also! Why, bless me, if I were to write a book for every one of them, the British Museum would hardly hold them!--and, worst of all, nobody would buy the books if I printed them. I hope I have solved the difficulty by dedicating this book to them all in a bunch. A mere list of all their names would take up a whole page, and the printer won't allow it.
THE AMATEUR ANGLER.