A portion of a book preceding the main text that comprises a formal statement by the author concerning the content of the book. It is commonly distinguished from an introduction (which is often part of the main text), and a foreword (which is frequently written by someone other than the author). It is similar to a prologue. In actual fact, however, authors often include prefaces, forewords, and introductions with little regard to the formal distinction among them. See Book Typography.

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