ページの画像
PDF
ePub

sʊft, but not so mountainous—at least, the Jura, not ap-entrance and bridge something like that of Durham,) pearing so, after the Bernese Alps. Reached Yverdun which commands by far the fairest view of the Lake of in the dusk; a long line of large trees on the border of Geneva; twilight; the moon on the lake; a grove on the the lake; fine and sombre; the Auberge nearly full-a height, and of very noble trees. Here Tavernier (the German Princess and suite; got rooms. eastern traveller) bought (or built) the chateau, because the site resembled and equalled that of Erivan, a frontier city of Persia; here he finished his voyages, and I this little excursion,-for I am within a few hours of Diodati and have little more to see, and no more to say.”

"September 29. "Passed through a fine and flourishing country, but not mountainous. In the evening reached Aubonne, (the

EXTRACTS FROM A JOURNAL

IN ITALY.

Ravenna, January 4, 1821.

"Wrote five letters in about half an hour, short and

"A sudden thought strikes me.' Let me begin a savage, to all my rascally correspondents. Carriage Journal once more. The last I kept was in Switzerland, came. Heard the news of three murders at Faenza and in record of a tour made in the Bernese Alps, which I Forli-a carabinier, a smuggler, and an attorney-all last made to send to my sister in 1816, and I suppose that she night. The first two in a quarrel, the latter by preme has it still, for she wrote to me that she was pleased with it. Another, and longer, I kept in 1813-1814, which I gave to Thomas Moore in the same year.

ditation.*

"Three weeks ago-almost a month-the 7th it wasI picked up the Commandant, mortally wounded, out of "This morning I gat me up late, as usual-weather the street; he died in my house; assassins unknown, but bad-bad as England-worse. The snow of last week presumed political. His brethren wrote from Rome last melting to the sirocco of to-day, so that there were two night to thank me for having assisted him in his last d- things at once. Could not even get to ride on moments. Poor fellow! it was a pity; he was a good norseback in the forest. Stayed at home all the morning soldier, but imprudent. It was eight in the evening when -looked at the fire-wondered when the post would they killed him. We heard the shot; my servants and I ran out, and found him expiring, with five wounds, two come. Post came at the Ave Maria, instead of half-past one o'clock, as it ought. Galignani's Messengers, six in whereof mortal-by slugs they seemed. I examined him, number—a letter from Faenza, but none from England. but did not go to the dissection next morning. Very sulky in consequence, (for there ought to have been letters,) and ate in consequence a copious dinner; for when I am vexed, it makes me swallow quicker-but drank very little.

"Carriage at 8 or so-went to visit La Contessa G.when found her playing on the piano-forte-talked till ten, the Count, her father, and the no less Count, her brother, came in from the theatre. Play, they said, Alfieri's Filippo-well received.

"Two days ago the King of Naples passed through Bologna on his way to congress. My servant Luigi brought the news. I had sent him to Bologna for a lamp. How will it end? Time will show.

"Came home at eleven, or rather before. If the road

"I was out of spirits-read the papers-thought what fame was, on reading, in a case of murder, that Mr. Wych, grocer, at Tunbridge, sold some bacon, flour, cheese, and, it is believed, some plums, to some gipsy woman accused. He had on his counter (I quote faithfully) a book, the Life of Pamela, which he was tearing for waste paper, &c. &c. In the cheese was found, &c. and a leaf of Pamela wrapped round the bacon. What High time-almost a week at this work-snow, sirocco, one day-frost and snow the other-sad climate for Italy. would Richardson, the vainest and luckiest of living But the two seasons, last and present, are extraordinary. authors (i. e. while alive)-he who, with Aaron Hill, Read a Life of Leonardo da Vinci by Rossi-ruminated used to prophesy and chuckle over the presumed fall of Fielding (the prose Homer of human nature) and of-wrote this much, and will go to bed.

and weather are conformable, mean to ride to-morrow.

Pope (the most beautiful of poets)-what would he have said could he have traced his pages from their place on the French prince's toilets (see Boswell's Johnson) to the grocer's counter and the gipsy-murderess's bacon!!!

January 5, 1821. "Rose late-dull and drooping-the weather dripping and dense. Snow on the ground, and sirocco above in the sky, like yesterday. Roads up to the horse's belly

What would he have said? what can any body say, so that riding (at least for pleasure) is not very feasible.

save what Solomon said long before us? After all, it is but passing from one counter to another, from the book- Added a postcript to my letter to Murray. Read the seller's to the other tradesman's-grocer or pastry-cook. conclusion, for the fiftieth time (I have read all W. Scott's For my part, I have met with most poetry upon trunks; novels at least fifty times) of the third series of 'Tales of so that I am apt to consider the trunk-maker as the sex-my Landlord,'-grand work-Scotch Fielding, as well as ton of authorship.

• Bee Letter 465, &c.

great English poet-wonderful man! I long to get drunk and cry, neither of which is now a very easy matter-at least, for a player to produce in me.

with him.

"Thought of the state of women under the ancient

"Dined versus six o' the clock. Forgot that there was a plumpudding, (I have added, lately, eating to my Greeks-convenient enough. Present state, a remnant 'family of vices,') and had dined before I knew it. of the barbarism of the chivalry and feudal ages-artifi Drank half a bottle of some sorts of spirits-probably cial and unnatural. They ought to mind nome--and be spirits of wine; for, what they call brandy, rum, &c. &c. well fed and clothed-but not mixed in society. Well here is nothing but spirits of wine, coloured accordingly. educated, too, in religion-but to read neither poetry nor Did not eat two apples, which were placed, by way of politics-nothing but books of piety and cookery. Music dessert. Fed the two cats, the hawk, and the tame (but-drawing-dancing-also a little gardening and plough not tamed) crow. Read Mitford's History of Greece-ing now and then. I have seen them mending the road Xenophon's Retreat of the Ten Thousand. Up to this in Epirus with good success. Why not, as well as hay present moment writing, 6 minutes before 8 o' the clock making and milking? -French hours, not Italian.

"Hear the carriage-order pistols and great coat, as usual-necessary articles. Weather cold-carriage open, and inhabitants somewhat savage-rather treacherous and highly inflamed by politics. Fine fellows, thoughgood materials for a nation. Out of chaos God made a world, and cut of high passions comes a people.

"Clock strikes going out to make love. Somewhat perilous, but not disagreeable. Memorandum-a new screen put up to-day. It is rather antique, but will do with a little repair.

"Thaw continues-hopeful that riding may be practicaole to-morrow. Sent the papers to All-grand events coming.

"11 o' the clock and nine minutes. Visited La Contessa G. Nata G. G. Found her beginning my letter of answer to the thanks of Alessio del Pinto of Rome for assisting his brother the late Commandant in his last moments, as I had begged her to pen my reply for the purer Italian, I being an ultra-montane, little skilled in the set phrase of Tuscany. Cut short the letter-finish it another day. Talked of Italy, patriotism, Alfieri, Madame Albany, and other branches of learning. Also Sallust's Conspiracy of Catiline, and the war of Jugurtha. At 9 came in her brother, Il Conte Pietro-at 10, her father, Conte Ruggiero.

"Talked of various modes of warfare-of the Hungarian and Highland modes of broadsword exercise, in both whereof I was once a moderate 'master of fence.' Settled that the R. will break out on the 7th or 8th of March, in which appointment I should trust, had it not been settled that it was to have broken out in October, 1820. But those Bolognese shirked the Romagnuoles.

It is all one to Ranger.' One must not be particular, but take rebellion when it lies in the way. Came home-read the 'Ten Thousand' again, and will go to bed.

"Came home, and read Mitford again, and played with my mastiff-gave him his supper. Made another reading to the epigram, but the turn the same. To-night at the theatre, there being a prince on his throne in the last scene of the comedy,-the audience laughed, and asked him for a Constitution. This shows the state of the pub lic mind here, as well as the assasinations. It won't do. There must be a universal republic, and there ought to be.

"The crow is lame of a leg-wonder how it happened -some fool trod upon his toe, I suppose. The falcon pretty brisk-the cats large and noisy-the monkeys I have not looked to since the cold weather, as they suffer by being brought up. Horses must be gay-get a ride as soon as weather serves. Deused muggy still-an Italian winter is a sad thing, but all the other seasons are charming.

"What is the reason that I have been, all my lifetime more or less ennuyé? and that, if any thing, I am rather less so now than I was at twenty, as far as my recollection serves? I do not know how to answer this, but presume that it is constitutional-as well as the waking in low spirits, which I have invariably done for many years. Temperance and exercise, which I have practised at times, and for a long time together vigorously and violently, made little or no difference. Violent passions did; -when under their immediate influence-it is odd, butI was in agitated, but not in depressed spirits.

"A dose of salts has the effect of a temporary inebriation, like light champaign, upon me. But wine and spirits make me sullen and savage to ferocity-silent, however and retiring, and not quarrelsome, if not spoken to. Swimming also raises my spirits, but in general they are low, and get daily lower. That is hopeless; for I do not think I am so much ennuyé as I was at nineteen. The proof is, that then I must game, or drink, or be in motion of some kind, or I was miserable. At present, I can mope "Mem.-Ordered Fletcher (at four o'clock this after-in quietness; and like being alone better than any comnoon) to copy out 7 or 8 apophthegms of Bacon, in which pany-except the lady's whom I serve. But I feel a I have detected such blunders as a schoolboy might de- something, which makes me think that, if I ever reach tect, rather than commit. Such are the sages! What near to old age, like Swift, I shall die at top' first. must they be, when such as I can stumble on their mis- Only I do not dread idiotism or madness so much as he takes or mistatements? I will go to bed, for I find that I did. On the contrary, I think some quieter stages of both grow cynical. must be preferable to much of what men think the pos session of their senses.

"January 6, 1821. "Mist-thaw-slop-rain. No stirring out on horse"January 7, 1821, Sunday. back. Read Spence's Anecdotes. Pope a fine fellow- "Still rain-mist-snow-drizzle-and all the incalalways thought him so. Corrected blunders in nine apo-culable combinations of a climate, where heat and cold phthegms of Bacon-all historical-and read Mitford's struggle for mastery. Read Spence, and turned over Greece. Wrote an epigram. Turned to a passage in Roscoe, to find a passage I have not found. Read the Guinguené-ditto, in Lord Holland's Lope de Vega. 4th vol. of W. Scott's second series of Tales of my Wrote a note on Don Juan.* Landlord.' Dined. Read the Lugano Gazette. Read "At eight went out to visit. Heard a little music--I forget what. At 8 went to conversazione. Found like music. Talked with Count Pietro G. of the Italian there the Countess Geltrude, Betti V. and her husband. comedian Vestris, who is now at Rome-have seen him and others. Pretty black-eyed woman that-only twentyoften act in Venice-a good actor-very. Somewhat of two-same age as Teresa, who is prettier, though. a mannerist; but excellent in broad comedy, as well as in sentimental pathetic. He has made me frequently laugh

"The Count Pietro G. took me aside to say that the Patriots have had notice from Forli (twenty miles off) that to-night the government and its party mean to strike a stroke-that the Cardinal here has had orders to make

• Don Juan, note 9th to Canto V

of the Neapolitans, and the fierce spirit of the Liberals here. The truth is, that ** cares for little but his place (which is a good one) and wishes to play pretty with both parties. He has changed his mind thirty times these last three moons, to my knowledge, for he corresponds with me. But he is not a bloody fellow-only an avaricious one.

several arrests immediately, and that, in consequence, the Liberals are arming, and have posted patrols in the streets, to sound the alarm and give notice to fight for it. "He asked me 'what should be done?'-I answered, fight for it, rather than be taken in detail;' and offered, if any of them are in immediate apprehension of arrest, to receive them in my house, (which is defensible,) and to defend them, with my servants and themselves, (we have arms and ammunition,) as long as we can,--or to try to get them away under cloud of night. On going home, II should have gone to bed two hours earlier. And yet 1 offered him the pistols which I had about me-but he ought not to complain; for, though it is a sirocco, and refused, but said he would come off to me in case of acci- heavy rain, I have not yawned for these two days. dents.

"It seems that, just at this moment (as Lydia Languish says) there will be no elopement after all. I wish that I had known as much last night—or, rather, this morning

"Came home-read History of Greece-before dinner had read Walter Scott's Rob Roy. Wrote address to the letter in answer to Alessio del Pinto, who has thanked me for helping his brother (the late Commandant, murdered here last month) in his last moments. Have told him I only did a duty of humanity-as is true. The brother lives at Rome.

"It wants half an hour of midnight, and rains;—as Gibbet says, 'a fine night for their enterprise-dark as hell, and blows like the devil.' If the row don't happen now, it must soon. I thought that their system of shooting people would soon produce a reaction-and now it seems coming. I will do what I can in the way of combat, though a little out of exercise. The cause is a good

one.

"Mended the fire with some 'sgobole,' (a Romagnuo!o word,) and gave the falcon some water. Drank some Seltzer-water. Mem.-received to-day a print, or etching of the story of Ugolino, by an Italian painter-different, of course, from Sir Joshua Reynolds's, and I think (as far as recollection goes) no worse, for Reynolds is not good in history. Tore a button in my new coat.

"Turned over and over half a score of books for the passage in question, and can't find it. Expect to hear the drum and the musketry momently (for they swear to resist, and are right)—but I hear nothing, as yet, save the plash of the rain and the gusts of the wind at intervals. Don't like to go to bed, because I hate to be waked, and "I wonder what figure these Italians will make in a would rather sit up for the row, if there is to be one. regular row. I sometimes think that, like the Irishman's "Mended the fire-have got the arms-and a book or gun, (somebody had sold him a crooked one,) they will two, which I shall turn over. I know little of their num-only do for 'shooting round a corner;' at least this sort of bers, but think the Carbonari strong enough to beat the shooting has been the late tenor of their exploits. And troops, even here. With twenty men this house might yet, there are materials in this people, and a noble energy be defended for twenty-four hours against any force to be if well directed. But who is to direct them? No matter. brought against it, now in this place, for the same time; Out of such times heroes spring. Difficulties are the hot and, in such a time, the country would have notice, and beds of high spirits, and Freedom the mother of the few would rise,—if ever they will rise, of which there is some virtues incident to human nature. doubt. In the mean time, I may as well read as do any thing else, being alone.

"Tuesday, January 9, 1821. "Rose-the day fine Ordered the horses, but Lega (my secretary, an Italianism for steward or chief servant) coming to tell me tha the painter had finished the work in fresco, for the room he has been employed on lately, [ went to see it before I set out. The painter has not copied badly the prints from Titian, &c. considering all things.

*

"January 8, 1821, Monday. "Rose, and found Count P. G. in my apartments. Sent away the servant. Told me that, according to the best information, the Government had not issued orders for the arrests apprehended; that the attack in Forli had not taken place (as expected) by the Sanfedisti-the opponents of the Carbonari or Liberals-and that, as yet, they "Dined. Read Johnson's 'Vanity of Human Wishes, are still in apprehension only. Asked me for some arms-all the examples and mode of giving them sublime, as of a better sort, which I gave him. Settled that, in case well as the latter part, with the exception of an occasional of a row, the Liberals were to assemble here, (with me,) couplet. I do not so much admire the opening. I rememand the he had given the word to Vincenzo G. and others ber an observation of Sharpe's (the Conversationist, as he of the Chiefs for that purpose. He himself and father are was called in London, and a very clever man,) that the going to the chase in the forest, but V. G. is to come to first line of this poem was superfluous, and that Pope (the and an express to be sent off to him, P. G. if any thing very best of poets I think) would have begun at once, only occurs. Concerted operations. They are to seize-but changing the punctuation

me,

no matter.

'Survey mankind from China to Peru !'

"I advised them to attack in detail, and in different: parties, in different places, (though at the same time,) so The former line, 'Let observation,' &c. is certainly heavy as to divide the attention of the troops, who, though few, and useless. But 't is a grand poem-and so true!-rue as yet being disciplined, would beat any body of people (not the 10th of Juvenile himself. The lapse of ages changes trained) in a regular fight-unless dispersed in small all things-time-language-the earth-the bounds of the parties, and distracted with different assaults. Offered to sea-the stars of the sky, and every thing about, around, let them assemble here, if they choose. It is a strongish and underneath' man, except man himself, who has always post-narrow street, commanded from within-and tena-been, and always will be, an unlucky rascal. The infinite ble walls. * variety of lives conducts but to death, and the infinity of "Dined. Tried on a new coat. Letter to Murray, with wishes leads but to disappointment. All the discoveries corrections of Bacon's Apophthegms and an epigram-the which have yet been made have multiplied little but exist. latter no for publication. At eight went to Teresa, ence. An extirpated disease is succeeded by some new Countess G. * At nine and a half pestilence; and a discovered world has brought little to came in Il Conte P. and Count P. G. Talked of a cer- the old one, except the p- first and freedom afterwardtain proclamation lately issued. Count R. G. had been the late a fine thing, particularly as they gave it to Euwith ** (the * *,) to sound him about the arrests. He, rope in exchange for slavery. But it is doubtful whether the Sovereigns' would not think the first the best present of the two to their subjects.

*

*

is a trimmer, and deals, at present, his cards with both hands. If he don't mind, they'll be full. ** pretends (I doubt him they don't, we shall sce) that there is no such order and seems staggered by the immense exertions

“At eight went out-heard some news. They say the king of Naples has declared, by couriers from Florence,

to the Powers (as they call now those wretches with crowns) that his Constitution was compulsive, &c. &c. and that the Austrian barbarians are placed again on war pay, and will march. Let them they come like sacrifices in their trim,' the hounds of hell!* Let it still be a hope to see their bones piled like those of the human dogs at Morat, in Switzerland, which I have seen.

"Heard some music. At nine the usual visiters-news, war, or rumours of war. Consulted with P. G. &c. &c. They mean to insurrect here, and are to honour me with a call thereupon. I shall not fall back; though I don't think them in force or heart sufficient to make much of it. But onward!—it is now the time to act, and what signifies self, if a single spark of that which would be worthy of the past.can be bequeathed unquenchedly to the future? It is not one man, nor a million, but the spirit of liberty, which must be spread. The waves which dash upon the shore are, one by one, broken, but yet the ocean conquers, nevertheless. It overwhelms the Armada, it wears the rock, and, if the Neptunians are to be believed, it has not only destroyed, but made a world. In like manner, whatever the sacrifice of individuals, the great cause will gather strength, sweep down what is rugged, and fertilize (for rea-weed is manure) what is cultivable. And so, the mere selfish calculation ought never to be made on such occasions; and, at present, it shall not be computed by me. I was never a good arithmetician of chances, and shall not

commence now.

"Came home-read. Corrected Tom Campbell's slips of the pen. A good work, though-style affected-but his defence of Pope is glorious. To be sure, it is his own cause too, but no matter, it is very good, and does him

great credit.

"January 10, 1821. "Day fine-rained only in the morning. Looked over accounts. Read Campbell's Poets-marked errors of Tom (the author) for correction.† Dined-went out-music-growth of the waters. Tyrolese air, with variations. Sustained the cause of the original simple air against the variations of the Italian school. * "Politics somewhat tempestuous, and cloudier daily. To-morrow being foreign post-day, probably something more will be known.

*

*

*

"Midnight.

"I have been turning over different Lives of the Poets. I rarely read their works, unless an occasional flight over the classical ones, Pope, Dryden, Johnson, Gray, and those who approach them nearest, (I leave the rant of the rest to the cant of the day,) and—I had made several reflections, but I feel sleepy, and may as well go to bed.

"January 11, 1821. "Read the letters. Corrected the tragedy and the 'Hints from Horace.' Dined, and got into better spirits. Went out-returned-finished letters, five in number, Read Poets, and an anecdote in Spence.

"All writes to me that the Pope, and Duke of Tuscany, and King of Sardinia have also been called to Congress; but the Pope will only deal there by proxy. So the interests of millions are in the hands of about twenty coxcombs, at a place called Leibach!

"I should almost regret that my own affairs went well, when those of nations are in peril. If the interests of mankind could be essentially bettered, (particularly of these oppressed Italians,) I should not so much mind my own 'sma' peculiar.' God grant us all better times, or more philosophy.

"In reading, I have just chanced upon an expression of Tom Campbell's;-speaking of Collins, he says that no reader cares any more about the characteristic manners of his Eclogues than about the authenticity of the tale of

Troy.' "T is false-we do care about 'the authenticity of the tale of Troy. I have stood upon that plain daily, for more than a month in 1810; and, if any thing diminished my pleasure, it was that the blackguard Bryant had impugned its veracity. It is true I read 'Homer Tra vestied,' (the first twelve books,) because Hobhouse and others bored me with their learned localities, and I love quizzing. But I still venerated the grand original as the truth of history (in the material facts) and of place. Other wise, it would have given me no delight. Who will persuade me, when I reclined upon a mighty tomb, that it did not contain a hero?-its very magnitude proved this. Men do not labour over the ignoble and petty dead-and why should not the dead be Homer's dead? The secret of Tom Campbell's defence of inaccuracy in costume and description is, that his Gertrude, &c. has no more locality in com mon with Pennsylvania than with Penmanmaur. It is notoriously full of grossly false scenery, as all Americans declare, though they praise parts of the Poem. It is thus that self-love for ever creeps out, like a snake, to sting any thing which happens, even accidently, to stumble upon it.

*Childe Harold, ai canto, stan. 63, and note 14. ↑ Don Juan, note 9 to Canto 5.

"January 12, 1821. "The weather still so humid and impracticable, that London, in its most oppressive fogs, were a summer-bower to this mist and sirocco, which has now lasted, (but with one day's interval,) checkered with snow or heavy rain only, since the 30th of December, 1820. It is so far lucky that I have a literary turn; but it is very tiresome not to be so many days. The roads are even worse than the able to stir out, in comfort, on any horse but Pegasus, for weather, by the long splashing, and the heavy soil, and the

Campbell's edition. There is a good deal of taffeta in
"Read the. Poets-English, that is to say-out of
a whole. I like him best, though, in his own poetry.
scme of Tom's prefatory phrases, but his work is good as

I

"Murray writes that they want to act the tragedy of Mahave protested against this piece of usurpation, (which, rino Faliero; more fools they-it was written for the closet. it seems, is legal for managers over any printed work, against the author's will,) and I hope they will not attempt it. Why don't they bring out some of the numberless aspirants for theatrical celebrity, now incumbering their still would hope that it will not be necessary, and that they shelves, instead of lugging me out of the library? I have written a fierce protest against any such attempt, but I will see, at once, that it is not intended for the stage. It is too regular-the time, twenty-four hours-the change prises, no starts, nor trap-doors, nor opportunities 'for of place not frequent-nothing melo-dramatic-no surtossing their heads and kicking their heels-and no lovethe grand ingredient of a modern play.

"I have found out the seal cut on Murray's letter. It is meant for Walter Scott-or Sir Walter-he is the first poet knighted since Sir Richard Blackmore. But it does not do him justice. Scott's-particularly when he recites is a very intelligent countenance, and this seal says nothing.

"Scott is certainly the most wonderful writer of the day. His novels are a new literature in themselves, and his poetry as good as any-if not better (only on an erroneous system)-and only ceased to be so popular, because the vulgar learned were tired of hearing 'Aristides called the Just' and Walter Scott the Best, and ostracised him.

"I like him, too, for his manliness of character, for the extreme pleasantness of his conversation, and his good nature towards myself, personally. May he prosper!for he deserves it. I know no reading to which I fall with such alacrity as a work of W. Scott's. I shall give the seal, with his bust on it, to Madame la Contessa G. this evening, who will be curious to have the effigies of a

man so celebrated.

"How strange are my thoughts!-The reading of the song of Milton. 'Sabrina fair' has brought back upon me

*Midnight.

-I know not how or why-the happiest, perhaps, days of "Read the Italian translation by Guido Sorelli of the my life (always excepting, here and there, a Harrow holyday in the two latter summers of my stay there,) when German Grillparzer-a devil of a name, to be sure, fot living at Cambridge with Edward Noel Long, afterward posterity; but they must learn to pronounce it. With of the Guards,-who, after having served honourably in all the allowance for a translatin, and, above all, an Italian the expedition to Copenhagen, (of which two or three translation (they are the verv worst of translators, except thousand scoundrels yet survive in plight and pay,) was from the Classics-Annibale Caro, for instance-and drowned early in 1809, on his passage to Lisbon with his there the bastardy of their language helps them, as, by regiment in the St. George transport, which was run foul way of looking legitimate, they ape their tather's tongue) of in the night, by another transport. We were rival-but with every allowance for such a disadvantage, the swimmers-fond of riding-reading-and of conviviality. tragedy of Sappho is superb and sublime! There is no The man has done a great thing in writing We had been at Harrow together; but-there, at least-denying it. his was a less osterous spirit than mine. I was always that play. And who is he? I know him not; but ages cricketing-rebelling-fighting-rowing, (from row, not will. "T is a high intellect. "I must premise, however, that I have read nothing of boat-rowing, a different practice,) and in all manner of mischiefs; while he was more sedate and polished. At Adolph Müllner's, (the author of 'Guilt,') and much less Cambridge-both of Trinity-my spirit rather softened, of Goethe, and Schiller, and Wieland than I could wish or his roughened, for we became very great friends. The I only know them through the medium of English, French, Of the real language I know description of Sabrina's seat reminds me of our rival and Italian translations. feats in diving. Though Cam's is not a very 'translucent absolutely nothing, except oaths learned from postillions wave,' it was fourteen feet deep, where we used to dive and officers in a squabble. I can swear in German pofor, and pick up having thrown them in on purpose-tently, when I like-Sacrament-Verflutcher-Hundsplates, eggs, and even shillings. I remember, in particu- fott'-and so forth; but I have little of their less energetic lar, there was the stump of a tree (at least ten or twelve conversation. feet deep) in the bed of the river, in a spot where we bathed most commonly, round which I used to cling, and 'wonder how the devil I came there.'

1

"I like, however, their wornen, (I was once so desperately in love with a German woman, Constance,) and all that I have read, translated of their writings, and all that I "Our evenings we passed in music (he was musical, have seen on the Rhine of their country and people-all, and played on more than one instrument, flute and violon-except the Austrians, whom I abhor, loathe, and—I cannot cello,) in which I was audience; and I think that our find words for my hate of them, and should be sorry to chief beverage was soda-water. In the day we rode, find deeds correspondent to my hate; for I abhor cruelty. bathed, and lounged, reading occasionally. I remember more than I abhor the Austrians—except on an impulse, our buying, with vast alacrity, Moore's new quarto, (in and then I am savage-but not deliberately so. 1806,) and reading it together in the evenings.

"Grillparzer is grand-antique-not so simple as the ancients, but very simple for a modern-too Madame de Staël-ish now and then-but altogether a great and goodly writer.

"We only passed the summer together;-Long had gone into the Guards during the year I passed in Notts, away from college. His friendship and a violent, though pure, love and passion-which held me at the same period -were the then romance of the most romantic period of my life.

"January 13, 1821, Saturday. "Sketched the outline and Drams. Pers. of an intended tragedy of Sardanapalus, which I have for some time meditated. Took the names from Diodorus Siculus, (I

know the history of Sardanapalus, and have known it since I was twelve years old,) and read over a passage in the ninth vol. octavo of Mitford's Greece, where he rather vindicates the memory of this last of the Assy.

rians.

*

"I remember that, in the spring of 1809, H** laughed at my being distressed at Long's death, and amused himself with making epigrams upon his name, which was susceptible of a pun-Long, short, &c. But three years after he had ample leisure to repent it, when our mutual friend, and his, H**'s, particular friend, Charles Matthews, was drowned also, and he, himself, was, as much the peoples. The intelligence seems positive-let it be affected by a similar calamity. But I did not pay him so they will be beaten in the end. The king-times are back in puns and epigrams, for I valued Matthews too fast finishing. There will be blood shed like water, and much, myself, to do so; and, even if I had not, I should tears like mist; but the peoples will conquer in the end have respected his griefs. I shall not live to see it, but I foresee it.

"Dined-news come-the Powers mean to war with

"Long's father wrote to me to write his son's epitaph. "I carried Teresa the Italian translation of Grillparzer's I promised, but I had not the heart to complete it. He Sappho, which she promises to read. She quarrelled was such a good, amiable being as rarely remains long in with me, because I said that love was not the loftiest theme this world; with talent and accomplishments, too, to for true tragedy; and, having the advantage of her native make him the more regretted. Yet, although a cheerful language, and natural female eloquence, she overcame my companion, he had strange melancholy thoughts some fewer arguments. I believe she was right. I must put times. I remember once that we were going to his more love into 'Sardanapalus' than I intended. I speak, uncle's, I think,—I went to accompany him to the door of course, if the times will allow me leisure. That if merely, in some Upper or Lower Grosvenor or Brook will hardly be a peacemaker. street, I forget which, but it was in a street leading out of some square, he told me that, the night before, he 'had taken up a pistol-not knowing or examining whether it was loaded or no-and had snapped it at his head, leaving it to chance whether it might, or might not, be charged.' The letter too, which he wrote me, on leaving college, to join the Guards, was as melancholy in its tenor as it could well be on such an occasion. But he showed some other books. nothing of this in his deportment, being mild and gentle; Took a glass of grog.

"January 14, 1821. "Turned over Seneca's tragedies. Wrote the opening lines of the intended tragedy of Sardanapalus. Rode out some miles into the forest. Misty and rainy. Returned-dined-wrote some more of my tragedy. "Read Diodorus Siculus-turned over Seneca, and Wrote some more of the tragedy. After having ridden hard in rainy

and yet with much turn for the ludicrous in his disposi-weather, and scribbled, and scribbled again, the spirits tion. We were both much attached to Harrow, and (at least mine) need a little exhilaration, and I do n't like sometimes made excursions there together from London, laudanum now as I used to do. So I have mixed a glass to revive our schoolboy recollections. of strong waters and single waters which I shall now

« 前へ次へ »