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Netherlands Scottish History
The History of the Scottish Church in Rotterdam

IN compiling the following historico-biographical Memoir, the Author has endeavoured to make a legitimate use of every accessible source of information. From the Sessional Register of the Scottish Church, which is fortunately complete and in excellent preservation, the leading facts in the History are principally derived. Many collateral particulars in this part of the work, as well as in the subjoined Notices, have been obtained from documents equally authentic, and hitherto in a great measure unexplored. The Author's original intention was merely to give an account of the Church, with which he has the honour to be connected; but frequent mention being necessarily made of the other English Congregations in the Netherlands, he considered that historical sketches of the Sister Churches in this country, might be acceptable. It may be proper to observe that, in most cases, these Notices are the result of a minute personal examination of the several Consistorial and Vestry Records.

Eagerly does the Author seize this occasion of assuring the members of the Scottish Consistory and Congregation at Rotterdam, how much he appreciates the Christian friendship, which, collectively and individually, they have extended towards him; and of gratefully acknowledging the encouraging interest which they, as well as others on the Continent, have taken in this little work. He gladly embraces this opportunity also of tendering his warmest acknowledgments to his respected brethren, the British ministers in the Netherlands, for the prompt and handsome manner in which they granted access to the Records of their respective charges. To those gentlemen entrusted with the keeping of the Minutebooks and papers of the discontinued churches in Holland, the Author's best thanks are due. Invariably has he taken care to quote his authority, whether printed, or manuscript: and his specific obligations to the promoters of his undertaking, will be observed in the course of the work. He cannot, however, omit mentioning, with becoming gratitude, the valued services of a much respected friend, who, as the Author's residence abroad prevented his superintending the press, undertook the task of correction. He alludes to the Rev. THOMAS MURRAY, M. A. of Edinburgh; whose learning, talents, and sound principles, are well known by his Literary History of Galloway, Life of Samuel Rutherford, and other publications. The Rev. HEW SCOTT, M. A. assistant minister at Cockpen, must likewise be ranked among the kind contributors to the present volume. Much time has been devoted by Mr. Scott, in examining and making important extracts from the Records of our Synods, Presbyteries, and Kirk-Sessions. It is to be hoped that, receiving due countenance, he will prosecute his laudable design of furnishing, what is a great desideratum, an illustrative catalogue of the established clergy of Scotland, since the period of the Reformation.

An engraved portrait of the Rev. Alexander Petrie, from an original painting in the possession of Consistory; together with views of the old and present Scottish Churches at Rotterdam, executed by three of the most eminent Dutch artists, will, it is presumed, be regarded as no unwelcome accompaniment.

The writer indulges the hope, that this first at tempt to preserve some memorials of our Continental Churches, will meet with a favourable reception; especially from such as venerate the distinguished worthies who, in the days of persecution, sought in Holland a safe and honourable retreat. The names of many of these pious and learned refugees, will be found to occupy a prominent place in the succeeding pages. To such as are, or whose relations have been, connected by office or otherwise, with our churches in the United Provinces, the present work, with all its imperfections, may perhaps be regarded with peculiar interest.

To the illustrious family of Orange, the hereditary patrons of our Presbyterian churches in this country, and to the Netherlands Government, whose munificence, uninfluenced by political changes, has always been generously extended to our religious iristitutions, the unfeigned respect and gratitude of every true-hearted Briton will ever be most cheerfully rendered.

The Brief View given of the Dutch Ecclesiastical establishment has been drawn up, chiefly from the obliging communications and suggestions of several highly respectable individuals, particularly the Rev. Mil. VAN DER TUUK, editor of a standard work on the affairs of the Netherlands Reformed Church; the Rev. DR. YPEY, emeritus, professor of Theology and Ecclesiastical History in the University of Groningen ; and the Rev. MR. DE VRIES of this city.

In the Appendix are inserted several original and curious documents, illustrative of the text.

346, Wine Haven,
ROTTERDAM, October 6, 1832.

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