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It was while engaged in the preparation of a book -still unfinished-on the Sway of Friendship in the World's Forces, that I came upon facts concerning the primitive rite of covenanting by the inter-transfusion of blood, which induced me to turn aside from my other studies, in order to pursue investigations in this direction.
Having an engagement to deliver a series of lectures before the Summer School of Hebrew, under Professor W. R. Harper, of Chicago, at the buildings of the Episcopal Divinity School, in Philadelphia, I decided to make this rite and its linkings the theme of that series; and I delivered three lectures, accordingly, June 16-18, 1885.
The interest manifested in the subject by those who heard the Lectures, as well as the importance of the theme itself, has seemed sufficient to warrant its presentation to a larger public. In this publishing, the form of the original Lectures has, for convenience sake, been adhered to; although some considerable additions to the text, in the way of illustrative facts,