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AN ESSAY

ON

SHAKESPEARE'S CHARACTER OF SHYLOCK,

ORIGINATING

IN AN EXAMINATION OF THE LAWS AND CUSTOMS OF MOSES, AND

OF THE PRIMITIVE CHRISTIANS, WITH REFERENCE TO

ENUMERATIONS OF POPULATION, AND THE

RATE OF INTEREST OF MONEY.

BY GEORGE FARREN,

Resident Director of the Asylum Life Office.

AUTHOR OF OBSERVATIONS ON THE LAWS OF MORTALITY AND DISEASE AND ON

THE PRINCIPLES OF LIFE INSURANCE, WITH ILLUSTRATIONS OF THE PROGRESS
OF MANIA, AS DISPLAYED IN THE CHARACTERS OF LEAR, EDGAR, HAMLET,
ÅND OPHELIA."

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INTRODUCTION.

To those who are acquainted with the pursuits of the Author of the following Essay, it cannot be unknown that the two essential elements of a system of Life Assurance are—The probable duration, or more correctly speaking, the expectation of human existence: and—a defined rate of the breed of money commonly called interest.

For the former-recourse must be had to various enumerations of population, with the relative lists of burial; and for the latter-to the fluctuations in the value of money, influenced by fiscal regulations affecting the precious metals, and by the laws relating to interest.

Now the earliest enumerations and classifications of population are those recorded in Exodus, xxx. 12, 13, 14; Leviticus, xxvi, 3; Numbers, i.-iv. and xxvi. and II Samuel, xxiv. Some of these

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