ページの画像
PDF
ePub

In consequence of the death of Lady Noel, the mother of Lady Byron, which took place in the early part of the year 1822, he assumed the title of Noel Byron, and tc most of his letters, &c. written after this period, that signature is affixed.

work was not to be published until after the author's death. When that event took place, Mr. Moore repaid to Mr. Murray the money advanced, and placed the manuscript at the disposal of Lord Byron's sister, Mrs. Leigh; at whose request, and in accordance with the opinion of many of the friends of her brother, and of other parties interested, it was destroyed. An unwillingness to wound the feelings of many of the persons mentioned in it, is said to have been the only motive for its destruction.

At Pisa he remained until the middle ɔt May. He then passed a few weeks at Montenero, a villa near Leghorn, returne} to Pisa in July, and in September removed to Genoa, where he remained till his final departure for Greece, in July 1823. During this period were written Werner, The Deformed Transformed, The Island, The Age of Bronze, and the last Cantos of Don Juan, The Lord Chancellor had, in a case brought before him in the year 1821, refused to protect the copy-right of Cain, on the ground of its supposed irreligious tendency. For this, and other unexplained reasons, Mr.

In December, Lord Byron again left Venice for Ravenna, where he continued to reside during most of the two succeeding years. He there wrote the 3d, 4th, and 5th Cantos of Don Juan, the Prophecy of Dante, the translations from Pulci and Dante; the Letters relating to the Controversy with Mr. Bowles; the Letter to the Editor of Blackwood's Magazine; Ma- Murray had long declined or delayed the rino Faliero; Sardanapalus; The Two publication of several works forwarded to Foscari; Cain; Heaven and Earth; The him by Lord Byron, which appears to have ocVision of Judgment, and other smaller casioned for a short time a personal estrangepoems. Having disposed of Newstead ment between them. The works in quesAbbey, and secured, after a long Chancery tion, together with those above named, were suit, the possession of his Lancashire es- accordingly handed, at Lord Byron's request, tates, his pecuniary affairs had now be to another bookseller, Mr. John Hunt, by tome in good order, and he was enabled to whom they were soon afterwards published. Ave in comparative splendour. Of his yearly The Vision of Judgment, the Translation income, (nearly £4,000 sterling,) he devoted from Pulci, the Blues, Heaven and Earth, a great portion to charitable purposes, and and the Letter to Roberts, appeared in the was much beloved and respected in Ra-"Liberal," a periodical work printed in venna, particularly by the poorer classes, London by Mr. John Hunt, but conducted by whom his residence there was deemed a principally by his brother Mr. Leigh Hunt, public blessing. He himself was strongly then in Italy. With the exception of Lord attached to Ravenna. He preferred it to Byron's contributions, and one or two from every other part of Italy, and intended to Mr. Shelley, it contained little or no merit, bave made it his permanent place of abode. and was abandoned after the fourth number. But the Romagnese authorities, suspecting Lord Byron's motive in connecting himself him, and certainly not without reason, of a with it, as well in a literary as in a pecuniary political connexion with the enemies of the point of view, was solely to aid Mr. Leigh existing government, took measures which Hunt, who was at the time suffering in illindirectly compelled him to hasten his de- health and poverty. His only reward seems parture. Count Gamba, and his son, Count to have been a querulous murmuring on the Pietro Gamba, the father and brother of the part of that person during the life of his beCountess Guiccioli, were, in July 1821, ba- nefactor, and an ungrateful volume of the mshed from the Roman States. They were most pitiful and perfidious calumnies after accused of a participation in the revolution- his death. ay projects of the secret societies which, It appears from a statement published by under the name of the Carbonari, had long Mr. Murray, that during the life-time of Lord been organized throughout Italy. The Byron, he paid for the copy-right of his Countess, who had the preceding year ob- poems, &c. as follows:tained from the Pope a decree of separation Childe Harold, Cantos 1st and 2d from her husband, on condition that she should in future reside with her father, accompanied them to Pisa, where, in the Norember Collowing, Lord Byron joined them. Corsair

3d 4th

19

Giaour

Bride of Abydos

--

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

£600

1575

2100

525

525

525

[merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Mazeppa.

Prisoner of Chillon

Sundries

700 tleman,) Doctor Bruno, (an Italian surgeon, and eight servants. After touching for

525

525

315 supplies at Leghorn, where they remained

315 a few days, they sailed for Cephalonia, and 525 reached Argolosti, the chief port in that island, on the 21st of July.

1525

1525

1050 He there determined to wait for such in.1100 formation from the Greek governments as 525 should enable him to decide as to his future

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

525

450 proceedings, and despatched messengers to Corfu and Missolonghi, the latter the then £15,455 seat of government of Western Greece, in

the hope of obtaining it. During their ab

He afterwards purchased the copy-rights sence he visited Ithaca, where he contriof all the other works, including those pub-buted largely to the relief of a great numlished by Cawthorne, the Hunts, &c. at an ber of distressed families who had fled thiexpense of nearly £10,000 more. Several ther from Scio. He continued on board of the above were presented by Lord the Hercules in the harbour of Argolosti for Byron to Mr. Dallas, and the later Cantos more than six weeks, but the adverse inof Don Juan to Hunt. terests and contradictory statements and While at Pisa, Lord Byron received requests of the various rival factions, still intelligence of the death of his natural rendering uncertain the best method of daughter, Allegra, a loss which distressed benefiting Greece, he finally took up his him at the moment, almost to madness. She abode on shore in a small village called had been sent to him from Switzerland to Metaxata, about seven miles from ArgoVenice in September 1818, then nearly two losti. years old, by her mother, an Englishwoman, At length, the arrival at Missolonghi of and had continued with him until a short a Greek fleet which had been long expected, time previous to his leaving Ravenna, induced him to believe that the time had when he placed her in a convent not far arrived when his presence there could be from that city, to commence her education. useful. He accordingly on the 29th of She died of a fever in April 1822. His December embarked in a small Greek vesfriend, Mr. Shelley, who had been for some sel, called a Mistico, Count Gamba, with time residing at Pisa, and with whom he the horses and heavy baggage following in had renewed the social and literary inter- a larger ship. The latter was, the next course previously formed in Switzerland, day, brought to by a Turkish frigate, and was a few months after drowned in a vio-carried into Patras, but in an interview with lent storm in the Bay of Spezea, near Leg- the Pacha of that place, Count Gamba horn. succeeded in procuring her release, and On the 13th of July 1823, Lord Byron reached Missolonghi on the 4th of January. left Genoa for Greece. His preparations The Mistico, with Lord Byron and his for a visit to that country for the purpose suite on board, touched at Zante, where of offering his personal means and services they received a quantity of specie, and proto assist the Greeks in their struggle for ceeded for Missolonghi. On their way they freedom, had been for some time going on, narrowly escaped capture from the frigate a correspondence with several of their above mentioned. Fortunately the Turks chiefs, and with the Greek Committee in mistook the vessel for a Greek brulot cr London, having been commenced the pre-fireship, and were in consequence afraid to ceding April. He had obtained, through fire. With difficulty they eluded her, and the aid of his bankers in Genoa, partly by reached Dragomestri, a small seaport or anticipating his income, and partly from the coast of Acarnania in safety, where other resources, an advance of a large they were detained for some time by a viosum, and had chartered an English brig, lent gale, and did not arrive at Misso.ongh the Hercules, for the voyage, and loaded until the 5th of January. her with arms, ammunition, and hospital| Lord Byron was received by Prince stores. His suite consisted of Count Pie- Mavrocordato, at the head of the magistracy tro Gamba, (the brother of the Countess and the whole population civil and miliGuiccioli,) Mr. Trelawny, (an English gen- tarv, with distinguished honours, and every

[ocr errors]

token of gratitude and delight. But the healthy, and the military quarters where he pleasure derived from such a welcome was resided were comfortless and exposed. On too soon embittered. He found all things the evening of the 15th of February, the in a wretched state of disorganization, the day after the abandonment of the expedition chiefs divided into numerous and conflicting to Lepanto, he was suddenly seized with a parties, each desirous of enlisting him in its convulsive fit which deprived him for seseparate views, and the soldiers and inhabi-veral minutes of his senses, distorting for the tants imagining that he and he only could moment his features in a most fearful manquiet their unhappy dissensions, and unite ner, and leaving him exhausted and unable the efforts of all against the common enemy. to move for many days. He immediately employed himself day and He was, however, gradually recovering night in effecting this object, and partially until the 9th of April. In the interim he succeeded. He formed and equipped at his had occupied himself in repairing the forown expense a corps of Suliotes, a part of tifications at Missolonghi, and in the formawhom he had previously collected and armed tion of a brigade with a view to offensive or at Cephalonia. Their number was now defensive measures, as events might require. augmented to between five and six hundred, He had also made arrangements for visiting of whom, on the first of February having Salon, there to meet a congress of the previously received a regular commission as Greek chiefs, in the hope that his presence an officer in the Greek service, he assumed might aid in putting an end to their conthe command. They were brave and hardy tinual and fatal dissensions. But on the mountaineers, but undisciplined and unma- morning of the 9th of April, immediately nageable; and by their riotous conduct and after his return home from a long ride with savage deportment, as well towards the other Count Gamba, during which they had been military bodies as the inhabitants, kept the overtaken by a heavy shower, he was again garrison in a continual state of alarm, and seized with a convulsive shuddering, foltheir leader in a fever of annoyance and mor- lowed by fever and violent pain. The next tification. To his command was also at-day he was better and rode out as usual, tached a corps of artillery, the necessary but on the 12th he was confined to his supplies for which arrived in the early part chamber, and his disorder continued to in ef February, under the care of Captain crease in strength and danger hourty till the Parry, an English officer of engineers sent 17th, when he was prevailed upon to conby the Greek Committee from London. An sent to be bled, to which he had at all times attack on Lepanto, then in the hands of the before decidedly objected. A consultation Turks, had been for some time contemplated of his physicians was held in the afternoon by Lord Byron, and on the 14th of Febru- of the 18th, and it was then evident alike to ary the artillery corps was perfected, and all them and to Lord Byron that his end was things in readiness to start the following day, fast approaching, He endeavoured in a conwhen a sudden and fatal dispute with the versation with Fletcher his English servant Suliotes took place. They broke out into to express to him his last wishes, but his open mutiny, demanding increase of pay and voice was so faint and low, and his language emoluments, peculiar privileges of military so incoherent, that but little he said could he rank, and various other exactions. Satisfied understood. The names of Lady Byron, ɔf that no reliance could in peril be placed his daughter, of his sister Augusta, and a upon them, and at the same time that with- few others, were alone distinguishable. out their aid the Greek force was in- Early in the evening of that day, he sunk sufficient for the attempt on Lepanto, he into a slumber, in which he lay with ocvery reluctantly abandoned the expedition. casional struggles from suffocation during

His health had for a long time previous the next twenty-four hours. At a few to this period been greatly impaired. While minutes past six o'clock in the evening of at Dragomestri he had imprudently bathed the 19th he was observed to open his eyes after a day of violent exertion. A severe and instantly close them. The physicians cold was the consequence, and the inces-felt his pulse. He had expired. sant labour of mind and body to which he Immediately after his death, the following devoted himself at Missolonghi, rendered him proclamation was issued by Prince Mavro from day to day more feeble and feverish. cordato, and similar honours were paid to The climate of that place is extremely un-his memory throughout Greece.

"PROVISIONAL GOVERNMENT OF WESTERN GREECE.

The funeral ceremony took place in the church of Saint Nicolas, at Missolonghi, on the 22d. The coffin was a rude chest of wood, covered with a black mantle. It was carried on the shoulders of the officers

"The present day of festivity and rejoicing has become one of sorrow and of mourning. The Lord Noel Byron departed of his brigade, relieved from time to time this life at six o'clock in the afternoon, after an illness of ten days; his death being by others; and followed by all the troops of caused by an inflammatory fever. Such the garrison, and the whole population. In the church a helmet, a sword, and a crown was the effect of his Lordship's illness on the public mind, that all classes had forof laurel were placed upon the bier. After the Greek service for the dead was over, it gotten their usual recreations of Easter, even before the afflicting event was appre-diers, and surrounded by crowds, who remained guarded by a detachment of sol"The loss of this illustrious individual is thronged from all quarters, to pay their last look of tribute, until the night of the 23d. when it was privately carried back to his house by his own officers. On the 2d of

hended.

undoubtedly to be deplored by all Greece; but it must be more especially a subject of lamentation at Missolonghi, where his generosity has been so conspicuously dis-May it was embarked under a morning saplayed, and of which he had even become lute from the guns of the fortress, on board a citizen, with the further determination of a transport sent by the public authorities from the island of Zante, and on the 25th of May the Florida, an English armed ship. received it, under the charge of Colone. Stanhope, one of his coadjutors in the Greek cause, and sailed from Zante to

benefactor.

"Until, therefore, the final determination England. Two days, the 9th and 10th of of the National Government be known, and July, the body lay in state in Londor, and by virtue of the powers with which it has on Friday the 16th of July, was placed in been pleased to invest me, I hereby decree. the vault of his family, and next to the

"1st. To-morrow morning, at day light, coffin of his mother, in the parish church thirty-seven minute guns will be fired from of Hucknell, a small village near Newstead the Grand Battery, being the number which Abbey. corresponds with the age of the illustrious is a tablet of white marble, hearing the following inscription:

Over the chancel of the church

deceased.

participating in all the dangers of the war.

"Every body is acquainted with the beneficent acts of his Lordship, and none can cease to hail his name as that of a real

IN THE VAULT BENEATH,

"2d. All the public offices, even the tribunals, are to remain closed for three suc- WHERE MANY OF HIS ANCESTORS AND HIS MOTHER cessive days.

ARE BURIED,

"Sd. All the shops, except those in which provisions or medicines are sold, will also be shut; and, it is strictly enjoined, that every species of public amusement, and THE Author of "childe HAROLD'S PILGRIMAGE." other demonstrations of festivity at Easter, shall be suspended.

LORD BYRON, OF ROCHDALE,
IN THE COUNTY OF LANCASTER,

HE WAS BORN IN LONDON ON THE 22D OF
JANUARY, 1788.

HE DIED AT MISSOLONGHI, IN WESTERN GREECE
ON THE 19TH OF APRIL, 1824,
ENGAGED IN THE GLORIOUS ATTEMPT TO
RESTORE THAT
4OUNTRY TO HER ANCIENT REEDOM AND
RENOWN.

"4th. A general mourning will be observed for twenty-one days.

"5th. Prayers and a funeral service are to be offered up in all the churches. (Signed)

“A. MAVROCORDATO, “GEORGE PRAIDIE Secretary. “ Given at Missolonghi, this 19th day of Apr., 1824.

LIE THE REMAINS OF

GEORGE GORDON NOEL BYRON,

[ocr errors]

LETTERS.

LETTER I.

TO MISS PIGOT OF SOUTHWELL.

mother has laid me under great obligations, and you, with the rest of your family, merit my warmest thanks for your kind connivance at my escape from 'Mrs. Byron furiosa!'

in vain

"Burgage Manor, August 29th, 1804. eived the arms, my dear Miss Pigot, and am very "Oh! for the pen of Ariosto to rehearse, in epic, the much obliged to you for the trouble you have taken. It scolding of that momentous eve,-or rather, let me invoke is impossible I should have any fault to find with them. the shade of Danté to inspire me, for none but the auThe sight of the drawings gives me great pleasure for a thor of the 'Inferno' could properly preside over such an double reason,-in the first place, they will ornament my attempt. But, perhaps, where the pen might fail, the books, in the next, they convince me that you have not pencil would succeed. What a group!-Mrs. B. the entirely forgotten me. I am, however, sorry you do not principal figure; you cramming your ears with cotton, as return sooner, you have already been gone an age. I per- the only antidote to total deafness; Mrs. haps may have taken my departure for London before you endeavouring to mitigate the wrath of the lioness robbed come back; but, however, I will hope not. Do not of her whelp; and last, though not least, Elizabeth and overlook my watch-ribbon and purse, as I wish to carry Wousky,-wonderful to relate!-both deprived of their them with me. Your note was given me by Harry, at parts of speech, and bringing up the rear in mute astothe play, whither I attended Miss Lyon and Doctor nishment. How did S. B. receive the intelligence? s; and now I have set down to answer it before How many puns did he utter on so facetious an event? I go to bed. If I am at Southwell when you return, In your next inform me on this point, and what excuse and I sincerely hope you will soon, for I very much you made to A. You are probably by this time tired of regret your absence,-I shall be happy to hear you sing deciphering this hieroglyphical letter;-like Tony Lumpmy favourite, The Maid of Lodi.' My mother, to-kin, you will pronounce mine to be a dd up and gether with myself, desires to be affectionately remem-down hand. All Southwell, without doubt, is involved in bered to Mrs. Pigot, and believe me, my dear Miss amazement. Apropos, how does my blue-eyed nun, the Pigot, I remain your affectionate friend, fair? is she 'robed in sable garb of wo?"

"Here I remain at least a week or ten days; previous to my departure you shall receive my address, but what it will be I have not determined. My lodgings must be kept secret from Mrs. B.; you may present my compliments to her, and say any attempt to pursue me will fail, as I have taken measures to retreat immediately to Portsmouth, on the first intimation of her removal from Southwell. You may add, I have now proceeded to a friend's house in the country, there to remain a fortnight.

LETTER II.

TO MR. PIGOT.

"16 Piccadilly, August 9th, 1806. "MY DEAR PIGOT,

'BYRON.

"I have now blotted (I must not say written) a com. plete double letter, and in return shall expect a monstrous budget. Without doubt, the dames of Southwell reprobate the pernicious example I have shown, and tremble "Many thanks for your amusing narrative of the last in dudgeon their mammas on any grievance. Adieu. lest their babes should disobey their mandates, and quit proceedings of my amiable Alecto, who now begins to When you begin your next, drop the 'lordship,' and put feel the effects of her folly. I have just received a pe-Byron' in its place. Believe me yours, &c. nitential epistle, to which, apprehensive of pursuit, I have despatched a moderate answer, with a kind of promise to return in a fortnight;-this, however, (entre nous,) I never mean to fulfil. Her soft warblings must have delighted her auditors, her higher notes being particularly musical, and on a calm moonlight evening would be heard to great advantage. Had I been present as a spectator, nothing would have pleased me more; but to have come forward as one of the 'dramatis persona,'-St. Dominic defend me from such a scene! Seriously, your

"BYRON.

"P. S. If you think proper to send me any answer to this, I shall be extremely happy to receive it. Adieu. "P.S. 2d. As you say you are a novice in the art of knitting, I hope it don't give you too much trouble. Go on slowly, but surely. Once more, adieu."

LETTER III.

TO MISS PIGOT.

"London, August 10th, 180€

"MY DEAR BRIDGET, "As I have already troubled your brother with move than he will find pleasure in deciphering, you are the next to whom I shall assign the difficult employment of His Mother. Her recent violence of teraper had compelled him to that no idea of Mrs. B.'s arrival had disturbed me the perusing this 2d epistle. You will perceive from ry Ist,

fy to London.

« 前へ次へ »