The rapid sale of the first edition of this work, of one thousand copies, has induced the author to revise, correct, and enlarge it, and by the advice of those who were competent to judge of its merits, to get it stereotyped; this will enable him to get out new editions as fast as the sale may require, making such improvements as future investigation may lead him to think proper. Those alone who have undertaken the task, know the difficulty of explaining and clearly illustrating the science of medicine, in as few words as must necessarily be used, to treat on so many branches of the subject, as are treated on in this small work; but his object is to get out a work, the price of which shall not be an obstacle in the way of any person's possessing it who may wish, and thus diffuse more generally the important knowledge therein contained

Concord, April 10, 1845

Preface To The Fourth Edition

Three editions of this work are already before the public. The rapid sale of more than five thousand copies, and the constant and increasing demand, from every quarter, for a still further extension of it, has induced the proprietor to issue the fourth edition. He cannot but be grateful to a discriminating community for the liberal patronage thus already bestowed. And at the same time, he cherishes the hope and belief that he is deserving, in some measure, of this consideration, in that he is delivering the world from the use of the dangerous and deadly drugs to which the diseased have so long and so vainly resorted, and directing them to milder and far more effectual measures for the recovery and preservation of health.

No pains have been spared to render this book what its title indicates,--A Guide to Health. A careful attention to its principles and directions will enable almost any family to combat successfully all the ordinary forms of disease, without being poisoned by the fearful [remedies] of the druggist, or plagued by the bills of those who prescribe or administer them.

It would be easy to add a long array of valuable names, as recommendations to this treatise. But such a course (common and laudable as it is) the proprietor deems unnecessary. If it were not a recommendation in itself, surely the rapid sale of so many thousand copies, and the constant demand from every direction for more, would argue a blindness on the part of the public, into which no one believes it has yet fallen. It is therefore trusted, all heretofore, on its own merits--in the confident belief that it deserves all the consideration it has yet received, and with the expectation that it will continue to receive that patronage which it has already earned for itself.

The Proprietor Milford, N. H., May, 1848.

Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1845,

By Benjamin Colby In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of New Hampshire.