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Foreword and | or Preface

We borrow here the Preface from: The Handy-Book of Literary Curiosities
What follows might initially appear non-sequitor (not in the right order). But it’s not. What better to describe what a preface is, then another preface? Especially if it’s simply as good as any preface I could write.
This Page also happens to be the Introduction to the Booklet (a subset of the Book) that contains and only contains the excerpts from the Handy-Book used in this Book, aside of course this Foreword to the Booklet.
Normally, a preface written by an author follows an "introduction to the book" by another author signature-stamped at timeofday(), a foreword. However here, this "forewords" something that was initially written as a preface to another book, and not this one. And so, the foreword to that preface follows the introduction to this Book.
Since a Preface is usually authored by the author of the book and the foreword by someone else, then Walshs’ Preface to his book to be reused in my book would maybe need to be retitled as Foreword to… something like "Foreword to Introduction to Making very Big Books AND|OR Preface to the Handy-Book of Literary Curiosities".
To reuse someone’s preface as foreword as we do here if you are not reading the Booklet version, is a special nesting case where this Page must follow an Introduction by the same Author.
We could say that "informatically" wise this Page can serve as Page 1 or 2. If used as a Preface then we are introducing Walshs’ booklet, if used as a Foreword, the introduction is continued on this Page. So it’s really (1) or (2(1)), one or the other – a foreword if in the booklet, a preface if in the book. If the later, (then you are in this volume not in the booklet) which implies that this Page follows another Page, so is not the first Page. Therefore, if we are in Walsh’s book this is the first Page. As I am writing this, there has yet to be a booklet published of the content of the Handy-Book this Book republishes, so what you are reading right now doesn’t appear in the booklet yet. Therefore you are in this book where I am content-binding a part of another book with this pre-text glue.
Reusable text is a frequent problem in third party product documentation where a product will have slightly different behavior, naming in this host product versus in that one. And of course, most of the times, a product at conception does not know there will ever be a version for another host context. Had Walsh knew that 120 years later I would reuse his Preface would he have written it differently?
The truth is that a preface is something that should be written by you to someone else (an audience of 1 to N) about this Book (or some other collection of Pages). It’s something you are supposed to type when you order a book-on-demand and ship it to someone else then you. So this preface is also a proxy, a stand-in for you to write to someone else your motives (where you explain why you are sending this to someone else – maybe because you love them), your personal notes perhaps such as: "I recommend you read this and that before…", as a way to explain to others the branches to this Book you are growing. There can be many forewords but only one preface.
As an example, this introduction to this Page is written in reference to the introduction Page to this volume of this Book, at the moment of writing of this sentence by the same author, me. Although we admit that the edit of this introduction was performed after, in a different version of this Book, so has conversational components. In fact this Page was initially added in version 053 of this volume.
We also on purpose here paste an old copyright expired text, not only because we can edit it, creatively quote and unquote it but also to help tone down the overall language so it’s more atemporal, has less the signature of a particular moment in time. The following is presented as an example of what a Preface looks like. A future version could take that Preface and rewrite it, first replacing the references by the ones used to assemble this Book and so on.
Preface to the Handy-Book of Literary Curiosities
PRIMARILY the aim of this Handy-book is to entertain. If it succeeds in instructing as well, there is no harm done. But a sugar coating of grateful gust has been quite as much an object with the compiler as the tonic which it may envelop. It is obvious that in so large a field as is afforded by the curiosities of literature the embarrassment has been mainly that of riches. Neither single volume nor a dozen volumes of this size could exhaust the material. Nevertheless, if the compiler has been even approximately successful, if his gleanings from the rich harvest-field have been fairly judicious, a gain in interest and even in value has been achieved by consulting the limitations of space.
At one time he had thought of disarming a certain kind of criticism by calling this "A Dictionary of Things Not Worth Knowing," the bulk of the matter herein contained being either in substance or in detail that which is deemed below the dignity of encyclopedias, dictionaries, or literary manuals. However, we are gradually coming to learn that there is no great and no small in the achievements of the human intelligence ; that what has ever interested men in the past must preserve an interest for the student of human nature at all times ; that the literary trifling which pleased the keenest wits at particular periods of mental development has a distinct historical value in the retrospect; that the blunders of great minds are worth preserving as successive steps towards the altar of Knowledge; that in proverbs is embodied the wisdom of many as well as the wit of one ; and that the vagaries of slang are dignified by the fact that slang may become the scholarly language of the future, just as the slang of the past is nearly the richest and most idiomatic portion of the current speech of today. Even the tracing of literary analogies, which is held in some disrepute by those who see in it merely a low detective cunning, a joy in convicting nobler minds of larceny and of discrediting the gifts of Nature's bounty, — even this is an exercise which, reverently conducted, is full of instruction and profit as well as curious interest. To learn that there is nothing new under the sun is to take to heart the lesson that the right direction of human achievement is to co-ordinate and harmonize the disjecta  membra of the old and ever young, and thus arrive at the sum and essence — the very heart of things. He is the poet, the creator, the mighty man, who does this, just as he is the great sculptor who liberates from the marble the image of all conceivable beauty that already resides therein. And, to run the analogy to the ground, one might trace the history of that block of marble up to its native quarry with nothing of invidious reflection on the sculptor.
A certain proportion of the articles, long and short, which are here collected, appeared in various periodicals, — in Lippincolfs Magazine and the American Notes and Queries of Philadelphia, in the Illustrated American and Belford's Magazine of New York. This fact is mentioned not only as an acknowledgment of courteous permission to reproduce them, but also as affording an opportunity to remark that, in the last year or so, some of these articles have been pretty freely levied upon by makers of literary manuals, whose apparent priority of publication might confuse the unwary as to which was the follower and which the leader. The point is not worth insisting upon, however, for, in a less flagrant way, most of us compilers are indebted to our predecessors. As to myself (let us drop all awkward locutions), I honestly acknowledge that I have found great assistance in such books of reference as Bartlett's "Familiar Quotations," Bent's "Famous Short Sayings," and Norton's " Political Americanisms," also in such collections of bibelots and curios as Brewer's " Dictionary of Phrase and Fable," Bombaugh's "Gleanings for the Curious," and Wm. T. Dobson's and Davenport Adams's various compilations. More than this, I have consulted the English Quotes and Queries with predatory aim, and have carried on a war of conquest amid the files of old periodicals. Where credit was possible, it has been given; but where (as does happen occasionally) a particular article is almost a cento made up from a dozen different authorities, it is well-nigh impossible properly to apportion the credit. This general confession, therefore, must suffice.

In conclusion, I must record my indebtedness to Mr. Stephen Pfeil, who contributed the articles on "Epigrams," "Impromptus," and "Quodlibets," as well as a number of the shorter articles embodying political Americanisms, etc. And a special debt of gratitude is due to Mr. Joseph McCrery , the scholarly proof-reader in the establishment of Messrs. J. B. Lippincott Co., whose corrections and suggestions went far beyond the limits of mere proof-reading.

Williams S. Walsh, 1892