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works. As regards works of genius and wit, there can be but little doubt, amongst people who will dispassionately consider the subject, that the only way of putting a stop to the perversion of those talents is to withhold from them all pecuniary advantages.
Some person, who appears to have been influenced more by his zeal than his judgment, addressed what he called • A Remonstrance to Mr. Murray, respecting the publication of Cain. The worst feature in this brochure was that it suggested very harshi measures to the public authorities, and seemed to be written with at least as much of personal hostility against Mr. Murray as of indignation against the tenor and tendency of Cain.' The spirit of this remonstrance may be guessed at by the following passages extracted from it, one of which is against the publisher, the other against the author :
• It is not for an anonymous writer to point out to the AttorneyGeneral the line of conduct he should pursue ; but I am persuaded nothing but an over-cautious deference to the peculiar temper of the times would allow the prosecutor of Hone to permit the publisher of “ Cain” to escape with impunity. In the mean time, there is another method by which I anticipate, in the ordinary course of things, you must be made to feel severely. You are supported by the great and powerful; and they in turn are supported by religion, morality, and law: can we suppose that they will continue their countenance to one who lends himself to be the instrument by which this triple pillar is shaken and undermined ? There is a method of producing conviction not to be found in any of the treatises on logic, but which I am persuaded you could be quickly made to understand ;-it is the argumentum ad crumenam.
• He' (Lord Byron) did not scruple to contrast the most solemn obligations which society can impose, and which usually call into exercise the tenderest feelings of our nature : those feelings he has wilfully thrown from him, and trampled on the ties from which they sprung; and now at last he quarrels with the very conditions of humanity, rebels against that Providence which guides and governs all things, and dares to adopt the language which had never before been attributed to any being but one, “Evil, be thou my good !"Such, as far as we can judge, is Lord Byron.' To this Lord Byron returned the following answer : Dear Sir,-Attacks upon me were to be expected; but I perceive one upon you in the papers, which I confess that I did not expect. How, or in what manner you can be considered responsible for what I publish, I am at a loss to conceive. If "Cain" be “ blasphemous," « Paradise Lost” is blasphemous; and the words of the Oxford gentleman, “ Evil, be thou my good!" are from that very poem, from the mouth of Satan; and is there any thing more in that of Lucifer in the Mystery ? “ Cain” is nothing more than a drama, not a piece of argument. If Lucifer and Cain speak as the first murderer and the first rebel may be supposed to speak, surely all the rest of the personages talk also according to their characters; and the stronger passions have ever been permitted to the drama. I have even avoided introducing the Deity, as in Scripture (though Milton does, and not very wisely either); but have adopted bis angel, as sent to Cain, instead, on purpose to avoid shocking any feelings on the subject, by falling short of, what all uninspired men must fall short in, viz. giving an adequate notion of the effect of the presence of Jehovah. The old Mysteries introduced him liberally enough, and all this is avoided in the new one.
• The attempt to bully you, because they think it will not succeed with me, seems to me as atrocious an attempt as ever disgraced the
What! when Gibbon's, Hume's, Priestley's, and Drummond's publishers have been allowed to rest in peace for seventy years, are you to be eingled out for a work of fiction, not of history or argument? There must be something at the bottom of this
some private enemy of your own : it is otherwise incredible.
I can only say," Me, me,-adsum qui feci," that any proceedings directed against you I beg may be transferred to me, who am willing, and ought, to endure them all; that, if you have lost inoney by the publication, I will refund any, or all, of the copyright; that I desire you will say that both you and Mr. Gifford remonstrated against the publication, as also Mr. Hobhouse ; that I alone occasioned it, and I alone am the person who either legally or otherwise should bear the burden. If they prosecute I will come to England; that is, if, by meeting it in my own person, I can save yours. Let me know-you sha'nt suffer for me if I can help it. Make any use of this letter which you please. · Yours ever,
• BYRON, • Pisa, February 8, 1822.
Here, for the present, all farther notice of this, which was the most objectionable poem Lord Byron had then produced, dropped.
LORD BYRON continued to live in Italy much in the same manner As he had done, mixing very little with English people, and, therefore, the subject of a thousand very absurd stories, not one of which was evez in its most prominent features at all true. We give the following example (and we do so particularly, because this was one at which Lord Byron was excessively annoyed) of this style of story-telling, cautiering our readers that every third word of it is a lie, more religiously paid than the Turk's tribute.' It was published in a little book called • The agic Lantern;' and said to be from the pen of a lady, whose charins, personal and mental, have raised her to the rank of a countess:
Signor —, an English singer, who had been making the tour of Italy to improve his musical tactics, was at Reggio, in Calabria, and anxious to proceed to Vienna by the shortest route, where he was engaged to sing before the emperor. He embarked, without passports, in an open boat bound to Ancona, a capital town on the Adriatie Gulf; but was seized near Cape Otranto by a Venetian galley, and thrown into prison, where he managed to have a letter delivered into Lord Byron's hands, who very soon had him released. He sang at the nobility's concerts, and became a general favorite.
• He was also a navigable gentleman, very partial to swimming. and gave a singular proof of his expertness in that exercise. At a moonlight meeting on the shore, he sang to amuse many of the chief nobility without receiving any recompense, and was wearied out wilk encores, when the Duke de Montcassio insisted upon his repeating a song. He remonstrated in vain, and they pressed upon him till he stood on the last of the Virgio's sleps leading to the water. They thought he was now safe ; but, to their utter astonishment, he made a low bow, and, taking to the water like a spaniel, swam across lo the square, amidst thunders of applause. Except upon the stage, the sigoor was never after troubled with ali encore.
• He lodged at a hotel adjoining that of Lord Byron's, who honored him with particular notice.
• Sir George Whiad for some time vainly labored for an introduction to his lordship. He was a ***, and most horribly vulgar in his language and deportment: moreover, his wife was a blue-stocking, and bad penned a novel, in which Lord Byron was introduced as a repentant husband. For these reasons the doors of his lordship were hermetically sealed against their ingress. Captain F-n, a Scotch officer, a friend of my lord's, and a wight of “ infinite mirth and excel. leut fancy,” bent upon mischief, promised Sir George an introduction. Signor was a partner in the scheme; he was dressed up in a fac-simile of his lordslip's clothes, and his supposed lordship received the baronet at his hotel. Added to bis natural stupidity, Sir George was purblind, and easily deceived. The company consisted of several bon vivants; the baronet sat on the right of the signor, fully convinced he was elbowing the immortal bard. The signor gave some of Lord B-'s songs in a strain of burlesque that created infinite mirth. Sir George listened with gravity, and marked time with his head. At the close of the evening a bill was presented of "heavy weight,” the mock lord having left the chair and the room. Sir George stared ; Captain F-nremarked that they were in a hotel, and every body was glad to pay for seeing my Lord Byron. The baronet discharged the bill, and went home highly pleased with his new acquaintance. Next day, when promenading, Sir George met his lordship in a similar dress to that worn by the signor; and, after rubbing his spectacles, saluted him with a “ How do ye do, my Lord ? how does the wine sit on your stomach ?” His lordship did not exactly stomach this mode of salutation, and peevishly exclaimed, “Sir, I don't know you.” “ Not know me!" said the wiseacre, “ for whom you sang so many rich sonys last night!" “ The man is mad," muttered his lordship, and pushed rudely past bim.
• The trick soon reached the ears of his lordship, who was ill pleased at his name being made so free with; and the baronet, onable to stand the quizzing, quitted Venice in disgust. His lordship, fertile at invention, laid a plan to be revenged upon the forward ballad-singer, who had the vanity to suppose he had a person “ worthy of any lady's eye." The Counless of Guiccioli undertook to make him believe she was smitten with the charms of his person, and in a short time succeeded. The signor professed himself her admirer, and an assignatjon was fixed upon to take place in her apartment, where there was only one door, and no hiding-place of any description. His lordship, as concerted, thundered at the door shortly after the signor had entered; and the lady, under pretence of saving bim, thrust bim into the chimney, and fastened the board with a spring lock.
• His lordship had ordered a cold collation and a concert of music, as numerous friends came with him. For the space of three hours the
entertainment was kept up merrily, and the signor suffered penance in the chimney. Imagine to yourself a July day in Italy, and then think what the signor must have endured. One of the company expressed a wish to change instrumental for vocal music, when Lord Byron observed he had a bird in the chimney which could imitate the notes of Signor to admiration. Going near the chimney, he, in a whisper, demanded a song, on pain of further confinement. The signor, humbled in spirit, began and finished with some humour the air
"Pray set the mournful captive free." • His lordship then, producing sundry benefit cards, made the company (most of whom were those that enjoyed the joke at his expense the preceding evening) purchase at a high price, remarking that every one was glad to pay for hearing Signor — sing. The son of Apollo was then released, and a free pardon granted, on his promising never again to soar beyond his professional sphere.
• The Countess of Guiccioli has occasioned some noise both in Italy and Englaud. All the romantic tales of his lordship taking her out of a convent are fictions; she is no subject for a nunnery. Her father is the head of an ancient Romaņ family, much reduced in its fortunes : he let out his palace for their support, and Lord Byron by chance occupied it when his daughter was given in marriage to the Count Guiccioli, an officer poor in every thing but titles. Lord B--- made the bride a liberal present of jewels, and in a short time he became the locum tenens of the bridegroom. Au amicable arrangement was madethe count set off to join the army at Naples, newly caparisoned—and the countess remained under the roof of the noble lord, where the father acts as regulator of the household. She is a lovely woman, not more than twenty-two years of age, of a gay volatile disposition-rides like an Amazon—and fishes, hunts, and shoots, with his lordslip. Nature appears to bave formed them for each other. She is beloved by all the domestics, and is friendly to every one that wants her aid. She speaks English with purity, and possesses many accomplishments.
Her spirit is of the most intrepid description. Two months ago we went on a shooting party to the island of Santa Maura, the ancient Leucadia, where Sappho took the lover's leap, and buried in oblivion all memory of Phaon's inconstancy. My lord was taken with one of his odd vagaries, and, without saying a word to any one, sailed in a Greek polacre to Ithaca. Chance directed a boat to St. Maura, the crew of which had seen bis lordship wandering on the shores of the