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the die." In the latter event, I shall submit without first and last attempt. To the dictates of young a murmur; for, though not without solicitude for the ainbition may be ascribed many actions more criinifate of these effusions, my expectations are by no nal and equally absurd. To a few of my own age means sanguine. It is probable that I may have the contents may afford amusement: I trust they dared much and done little; for, in the words of will, at least, be found harmless. It is highly imCowper, “ it is one thing to write what may please probable, from my situation and pursuits hereafter, our friends, who, because they are such, are apt to be that I should ever obtrude myself a second time on a little biasscd in our favour, and another to write the public; nor, even, in the very doubtful event of what may please every body ; because they who have present indulgence, shall I be tempted to commit a no connection, or even knowledge of the author, will future trespass of the same nature. The opinion of be sure to find fault if they can." To the truth of Dr. Johnson on the Poems of a noble relation of this, however, I do not wholly subscribe : on the mine, “That when a man of rank appeared in the contrary, I feel convinced that these trifles will not character of an author, he deserved to have his merit be treated with injustice. Their merit, if they possess handsomely allowed 9," can have little weight with any,
will be liberally allowed : their numerous faults, verbal, and still less with periodical censors; but on the other hand, cannot expect that favour which were it otherwise, I should be loth to avail myself of has been denied to others of maturer years, decided the privilege, and would rather incur the bitterest character, and far greater ability.
censure of anonymous criticism, than triumph in I have not aimed at exclusive originality, still less honours granted solely to a title. have I studied any particular model for imitation : some translations are given, of which many are paraphrastic. In the original pieces there may appear a casual coincidence with authors whose works I have been accustomed to read; but I have not been guilty of intentional plagiarism. To produce any thing en
Hours of Edleness. tirely new, in an age so fertile in rhyme, would be a Herculean task, as every subject has already been treated to its utmost extent. Poetry, however, is
ON THE DEATH OF A YOUNG LADY, not my primary vocation; to divert the dull moments of indisposition, or the monotony of a vacant hour, COUSIN TO THE AUTHOR, AND VERY DEAR TO H131. 3 urged me “ to this sin :" little can be expected from so unpromising a muse. My wreath, scanty as it Husu 'd are the winds, and still the evening gloom, must be, is all I shall derive from these productions ; Not e'en a zephyr wanders through the grove, and I shall never attempt to replace its fading leaves, Whilst I return, to view my Margaret's tomb, or pluck a single additional sprig from groves where And scatter flowers on the dust I love. I am,
at best, an intruder. Though accustomed, in my younger days, to rove a careless mountaineer on Within this narrow cell reclines her clay, the Highlands of Scotland, I have not, of late years, That clay, where once such animation beam'd : had the benefit of such pure air, or so elevated a re The King of Terrors seized her as his prey : sidence, as might enable me to enter the lists with Not worth, nor beauty, have her life redeem'd. genuine bards, who have enjoyed both these advantages. But they derive considerable fame, and a Oh! could that King of Terrors pity feel, few not less profit, from their productions; while I Or Heaven reverse the dread decrees of fate ! shall expiate my rashness as an interloper, certainly Not here the mourner would his grief reveal, without the latter, and in all probability with a very Not here the muse her virtues would relatc. slight share of the former. I leave to others “ virum volitare per ora." look to the few who will hear But wherefore weep? Her matchless spirit soars with patience “dulce est desipere in loco." To the Beyond where splendid shines the orb of day; former worthies I resign, without repining, the hope And weeping angels lead her to those bowers of immortality, and content myself with the not very Where endless pleasures virtue's deeds repay. magnificent prospect of ranking amongst “the mob of gentlemen who write; - my readers must deter
And shall presumptuous mortals Heaven arraign, mine whether I dare say “with ease," or the honour And, madly, godlike Providence accuse ? of a posthumous page in “ The Catalogue of Royal Ah! no, far fly from me attempts so vain ;and Noble Authors," – a work to which the Peerage I'll ne'er submission to my God refuse. is under infinite obligations, inasmuch as many names of considerable length, sound, and antiquity, are Yet is remembrance of those virtues dear, thereby rescued from the obscurity which unluckily Yet fresh the memory of that beauteous face; overshadows several voluminous productions of their Still they call forth my warm affection's tear, illustrious bearers.
Still in my heart retain their wonted place. With slight hopes, and some fears, I publish this
1 The Earl of Carlisle, whose works have long received the meed of public applause, to which, by their intrinsic worth, they were well entitled.
? [The passage referred to by Lord Byron occurs in Boswell's Life of Johnson, vol. viii. p. 91. ed. 1835. Dr. Johnson's letter to Mrs. Chapone, criticising, on the whole favourably, the Earl's tragedy of" The Father's Revenge," is inserted in the same volume, p. 242.]
The author claims the indulgence of the reader more for this piece than, perhaps, any other in the collection ; but as it was written at an earlier period than the rest (being com. posed at the age of fourteen), and his first essay, he preferred subinitting it to the indulgence of his friends in its present state, to making citlier addition or alteration.
* ("* My first dash into poetry was as early as 1900. It was the ebullition of a passion for my first cousin, Margaret Parker
LET Folly smile, to view the names
Of thee and me in friendship twined; Yet Virtue will have greater claims
To love, than rank with vice combined.
And though unequal is thy fate,
Since title deck'd my higher birth! Yet envy not this gaudy state;
Thine is the pride of modest worth.
Nor can thy lot my rank disgrace;
A friend, whom death alone could sever; Till envy, with malignant grasp,
Detach'd thee from my breast for ever.
Oh, Friend! for ever loved, for ever dear!
True, she has forced thee from my breast,
Yet, in my heart thou keep 'st thy seat ; There, there thine image still must rest,
Until that heart shall cease to beat.
And, when the grave restores her dead,
When life again to dust is given, On thy dear breast I'll lay my headWithout thee, where would be my heaven?
(daughter and grand-daughter of the two Admirals Parker), one of the most beautiful of evanescent beings. I have long forgotten the verse; but It would be difficult for me to forget her - her dark eyes - her long eye-lashes - her completely Greek cast of face and figure! I was then about twelveshe rather older, perhaps a year.
She died about a year or two afterwards, in consequence of a fall, which injured her spine, and induced consimption. Her sister Augusta (by some thought still more beautiful,) died of the same malady'; and it was, indeed, in attending her, that Margaret met with the accident which occasioned her death. My sister told me, that when she went to see her, shortly before her death, upon accidentally mentioning my name, Margaret coloured, throughout the paleness of mortality, to the eyes, to the great astonishment of my sister, who knew nothing of our attachment, nor could conceive why my name should affect her at such a time. I knew nothing of her illness – being at Har. row and in the country - till she was gone.
Some years after, I made an attempt at an clegy - a very dull one. I do not recollect scarcely any thing cqual to the transparent beauty of my cousin, or to the sweetness of her temper, during the short period of our intimacy. She looked as if she had been made out of a rainbow - all beauty and peace."
Byron Diary, 1821.]
1 (This little poem, and some others in the collection, refer to a boy of Lord Byron's own age, son of one of his tenants at Newstead, for whom he had formed a romantic attachment, of earlier date than any of his school friendships.]
2 (Lord Delawarr. The idea of printing a collection of his Poems first occurred to Lord Byron in the parlour of that cottage, which, during his visit to South well, had be. come his adopted home. Miss Pigot, who was not before aware of his turn for versifying, had been reading aloud the Poems of Burns, when young Byron said, that “ he, too, was a poet sometimes, and would write down for her some verses of bis own which he remembered." He then, with a pencil, wrote these lines, To D-" 4 fac-simile of the first four lines of this pencilling fronts p. 1.)
3 (This poem appears to have been, in its original state, intended to commemorate the death of the same lowly-born youth, to whom the affectionate verses given in the opposite colurnn werc addressed:
Though low thy lot, since in a cottage born," &c. But, in the altered form of the Epitaph, not only this passage, but every other containing an allusion to the low rank of his young companion, is omitted ; while, in the added parts, the introduction of such language as
“ What though thy sire lament his failing line," seems calculated to give an idea of the youth's station in life, wholly different from that which the whole tenour of the original Epitaph warrants. " That he grew more conscious,' says Mr. Moore," of his high station, as he approached to manhood, is not improbable, and this wish to sink his early friendship with the young cottager may have been a result of that feeling." The following is a copy of the lines as they first appeared in the private volume: – « Oh, Bor! for ever loved, for ever dear!
What fruitless tears have bathed thy honour'd bier !
No more doth old Robert, with harp-stringing nimmbers,
(wreath ; Raise a fame in the breast for the war-laurell'd Ncar Askalon's towers, John of Horistan slumbers;
Unnerved is the hand of his minstrel by death.
Wien, to their airy hall, my fathers' voice
Paul and Hubert, too, sleep in the valley of Cressy ;)
For the safety of Edward and England they fell : My fathers ! the tears of your country redress re; How you fought, how you died, still her annals can
On Marston, with Rupert 7, 'gainst traitors contending,
(field ; Four brothers enrich'd with their blood the bleak For the rights of a monarch their country defending,
Till death their attachment to royalty seal'd.
Shades of heroes, farewell ! your descendant, departing
From the seat of his ancestors, bids you adieu ! Abroad, or at home, your remembrance imparting
New courage, he'll think upon glory and you.
ON LEAVING NEWSTEAD ABBEY. 2 " Why dost thou build the hall, son of the winged days? Thou lookest from thy tower to-day: yet a few years, and the blast or the desert comes, it howls in thy empty court." - Ossian. Through thy battlements, Newstead, the hollow
winds whistle ; Thou, the hall of my fathers, art gone to decay : In thy once smiling garden, the hemlock and thistle Have choked up the rose which late bloom'd in the
way. Of the mail-cover'd Barons, who proudly to battle
Led their vassals from Europe to Palestine's plain, 3 The escutcheon and shield, which with every blast
Are the only sad vestiges now that remain. (rattle,
Though a tear dim his eye at this sad separntion,
'Tis nature, not fear, that excites his regret ; Far distant he goes, with the same emulation,
The fame of his fathers he ne'er can forget.
That fame, and that memory, still will he cherish;
He vows that he ne'er will disgrace your renown: Like you will he live, or like you will he perish: When decay'd, may he mingle his dust with your own!
! (or the sincerity of this youthful aspiration, the Poet has left repeated proofs. By his will, drawn up in 1811, he directed, that " no inscription, save his name and age, should be written on his tomb;" and, in 1819, he wrote thus to Mr. Murray :-" Some of the epitaphs at the Certosa cemetery, at Ferrara, pleased me more than the more splendid monuments at Bologna ; for instance
• Martini Luigi
Implora pace.' Can any thing be more full of pathos ? I hope whoever may survive me will see those two words, and no more, put over me."]
? (The priory of Newstead, or de Novo Loco, in Sherwood, was founded about the year 1170, by Henry II., and dedicated to God and the Virgin. It was in the reign of Henry Vill., on the dissolution of the monasteries, that, by a royal grant, it was added, with the lands adjoining, to the other possessions of the Byron family. The favourite upon whom they were conferred, was the grand-nephew of the gallant soldier who fought by the side of Richmond at Bosworth, and is distinguished irom the other knights of the same Christian name, in the family, by the title of “ Sir John Byron the Little, with the great beard." A portrait of this personage was one of the few family pictures with which the walls of the abbey, while in the possession of the Poet, were decorated.]
3 [There being no record of any of Lord Byron's ancestors having been engaged in the Holy Wars. Mr. Moore suggests, that the Poet may have had no other authority for this notion, than the tradition which he found connected with certain strange groups or heads, which are represented on the old panel-work in some of the chambers at Newstead. In one of these groups, consisting of three heads, strongly carved and projecting from the panel. the centre figure evidently represents a Saracen or Moor, with an European female on one side of him, and a Christian soldier on the other.
In a second group, the female occupies the centre, while on either side is the head of a Saracen, with the eyes fixed earnestly upon her. of the exact meaning of these figures there is nothing known; but the tradition is, that they refer to a love adventure of the age of the Crusades.)
* (" In the park of Horseley," says Thoroton, " there was a castle, some of the ruins of which are yet visible, called Iloristan Castle, which was the chief mansion of Ralph de Burun's successors.")
s [Two of the family of Byron are enumerated as serving
with distinction in the siege of Calais, under Edward III., and as among the knights who fell on the glorious field of Cressy.)
6 The battle of Marston Moor, where the adherents of Charles I. were defeated.
7 Son of the Elector Palatine, and nephew to Charles I. He afterwards commanded the feet in the reign of Charles 11.
8 [Sir Nicholas Byron served with distinction in the Low Coantries; and, in the Great Rebellion, he was one of the first to take up arms in the royal cause. After the battle of Edgehill, he was made colonel-general of Cheshire and Shropshire, and governor of Chester. " He was." says Clarendon," a person of great affability and dexterity, as well as martial knowledge, which gave great life to the designs of the well affected ; and, with the encouragement of some gentlemen of North Wales, he raised such a power of horse and foot, as made frequent skirmishes with the enemy, sometimes with notable advantage, never with signal loss." - In 1643, Sir John Byron was created Baron Byron of Rochdale in the county of Lancaster; and seldom has a title been bestowed for such high and honourable services as those by which he deserved the gratitude of his royal master. Through almost every page of the History of the Civil Wars, we trace his name in connection with the varying fortunes of the king, and find him faithful, persevering, and disinterested to the last. "Sir John Biron," says Mrs. Hutchinson, "afterwards Lord Biron, and all his brothers, bred up in arms, and valiant men in their own persons, were all passionately the king's." We find also, in the reply of Colonel Hlutchinson, when governor of Nottingham, to his cousin-german Sir Richard Byron, a noble tribute to the chivalrous tidelity of the race. Sír Richard, having sent to prevail on his relative to sur. render the castle, received for answer, that "except he found his own heart prone to such treachery, he might consider there was, if nothing else, so much of a Byron's blood in him, that he should very much scorn to betray or quit A trust he had undertaken." - On the monument of Richard. the second Lord Byron, who lies buried in the chancel of Hucknal. Tokard church, there is the following inscription : -“ Beneath, in a vault, is interred the body of Richard Lord Byton, who, with the rest of his family, being seren brothers, faithfully served King Charles the first in the civil wars, who suffered much for their loyalty, and lost all their present fortunes; yet it pleased God so to bless the humble endea. vours of the said Richard Lord Byron, that he re-piirchased part of their ancient inheritance, which he left to his pos. terity, with a laudable memory for his great piety and charity."']
LINES WRITTEN IN ' LETTERS TO AN ITALIAN NUN AND AN
ENGLISH GENTLEMAN: BY J. J. ROUSSEAU: FOUNDED OX FACTS.
My ears with tingling echoes ring,
“ Away, away, your flattering arts
TRANSLATION OF THE EPITAPH ON VIRGIL
BY DOMITIUS LARSUS.
He who sublime in epic numbers rolld,
And he who struck the softer lyre of love, By Death's ? unequal hand alike controllid,
Fit comrades in Elysian regions move !
ANSWER TO THE FOREGOING, ADDRESSED TO MISS
Dear, simple girl, those flattering arts,
IMITATION OF TIBULLUS.
“ Sulpicia ad Cerinthum." - Lib. 4. CRUEL Cerinthus ! does the fell disease Which racks my breast your fickle bosom please ? Alas! I wish'd but to o'ercome the pain, That I might live for love and you again : But now I scarcely shall bewail my fate; By death alone I can avoid your hate.
ADRIAN'S ADDRESS TO HIS SOUL WHEN
CANIMULA! vagula, blandula,
Nec, ut soles, dabis jocos ?]
To what unknown region borne,
But pallid, cheerless, and forlorn.
TRANSLATION FROM CATULLUS.
(Lugete, Veneres, Cupidinesque, &c.]
Whom dearer than her eyes she loved :
But lightly o'er her bosom moved :
TRANSLATION FROM CATULLUS.
And softly fluttering here and there,
Tuned to her ear his grateful strain.
Who sighs, alas ! but sighs in vain.
EQUAL to Jove that youth must be
Oh ! curst be thou, devouring grave!
For thou hast ta'en the bird away : From thee my Lesbia's eyes o'erflow, Her swollen cheeks with weeping glow; Thou art the cause of all her woe,
Receptacle of life's decay.
IMITATED FROM CATULLUS.
On! might I kiss those eyes of fire,
Still would I steep my lips in bliss,
TRANSLATION FROM HORACE.
(Justum et tenacem propositi virum, &c.)
Can swerve him from his just intent:
By Arister on the billows spent, To curb the Adriatic inain, Would awe his fix'd determined mind in vain.
Ay, and the red right arm of Jove,
He would, unmoved, unawed behold.
Again in crashing chaos rollid, In vast promiscuous ruin hurl'd, Might light his glorious funeral pile : Still dauntless 'midst the wreck of earth he'd smile.
[Μισονυκτιαις ποθ' ώραις,
%. T...] 'Twas now the hour when Night had driven Hler car half round yon sable heaven; Boötes, only, seem'd to roll His arctic charge around the pole ; While mortals, lost in gentle sleep, Forgot to smile, or ceased to weep. At this lone hour, the Paphian boy, Descending from the realms of joy, Quick to my gate directs his course, And knocks with all his little force. My visions fled, alarm'd I rose, — “ What stranger breaks my blest repose ? “ Alas!" replies the wily child, In faltering accents sweetly mild, “ A hapless infant here I roam, Far from my dear maternal home. Oh! shield me from the wintry blast! The nightly storm is pouring fast. No prowling robber lingers here. A wandering baby who can fear ? " I heard his seeming artless tale, I heard his sighs upon the gale: My breast was never pity's foe, But felt for all the baby's woe. I drew the bar, and by the light, Young Love, the infant, met iny sight; His bow across his shoulders flung, And thence his fatal quiver hung (Ah ! little did I think the dart Would rankle soon within my heart). With care I tend my weary guest, His little fingers chill my breast; His glossy curls, his azure wing, Which droop with nightly showers, I wring: His shivering limbs the embers warm; And now reviving from the storm, Scarce had he felt his wonted glow, Than swift he seized his slender bow:“ I fain would know, my gentle host," He cried, “ if this its strength has lost; I fear, relax'd with midnight dews, The strings their former aid refuse." With poison tipt, his arrow flies, Deep in my tortured heart it lies ; Then loud the joyous urchin laugh'd :“My bow can still impel the shaft: 'Tis firmly fix'd, thy sighs reveal it; Say, courteous host, canst thou not feel it?"
[θίλω λεγείν Ατρείδας, κ. τ. λ.]
I wish to tune my quivering lyre
FROM THE PROMETHEUS VINCTUS OF
Great Jove, to whose almighty throne
Both gods and mortals homage pay,
Thy dread behests ne'er disobey.
My voice shall raise no impious strain 'Gainst him who rules the sky and azure main.