1789.008: Decius's Letters.
Full Title: Decius's letters on the opposition to the new Constitution in Virginia, 1789.
Author: Nicholas, John (1761-1819), comp.
Place Issued: Richmond
Issuing Press: Augustine Davis
Description: 134 pgs.; (8vo).
Surviving copy at the Library of Congress (and filmed by the Early American Imprints Series) was acquired from estate of John Nicholas of Albemarle County; annotations therein show that Nicholas compiled and published this series of letters originally published in the Virginia Independent Chronicle (published by Augustine Davis) from December 1788 to July 1789. These letters constitute an exchange of opinions between Decius – who Nicholas identifies as Dr. James Montgomery – and ten other Virginia correspondents. Nicholas wrote the opening dedication to the General Assembly, leading some bibliographers to incorrectly credit him with title's authorship. But the majority of the letters (20 of 33) are signed Decius, with the remaining missives being reactions to specific Decius letters, only three of which are not pseudonymous: Robert Greenhow of Williamsburg (1) and John White of Hanover County (2). The other correspondents are Juvenal, Anti-Decius, A Federalist, Philo Patriae Pater Patriae, Junius Brutus, Philo Decius, and Brother Pedlar; an epilogue is signed Honestus.
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