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POETICAL WORKS OF LORD
OF LORD BYRON
HOURS OF IDLENESS
AND OTHER EARLY POEMS.1
3. No more doth old Robert, with harp
stringing numbers, Raise a flame, in the breast, for the
war-laurell'd wreath; Near Askalon's towers, John of Horis
tanslumbers, Unnery'd is the hand of his minstrel,
ON LEAVING NEWSTEAD
ABBEY. "Why dost thou build the hall, Son of the widged days? Thou lookest from thy tower t-das; yet a few years, and the blast of the desart comes: it howls in thy empty court.
I. Through thy battlements, Newstead,
the hollow winds whistle: Thou, the ball of my Fathers, art gone
to decay; In thy once smiling garden, the hemlock
and thistle Have choak'd 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, The escutcheon and shield, which with
ev'ry blast rattle, Are the only sad vestiges now that re
main. ? [There were four distinct issues of Byron's juvenile poems, (i.) Fugitive Pieces, which was mined for private circulation in December, 1800; (ii.) Poems on Various Occasions, printed for private circulation in January, 1807; (iii.) Hours of Idleness, published in June, 1807, and (iv.) Poemas Original and Translated, published in 1808. The whole of the first Lue (the Quarto) was destroyed with the exception of two or three copies. In the present * a general heading, "Hours of Idleness, and other Early Poems," has been applied to the entire collection of Early Poems, 1802-1809.) (The priory of Newstead, or de Novo Loco,
was founded about the year 1170, by Henry II. On the dissolution of the monstenes it was granted (in 1540) by Henry VIII.
Sir John Byron the Little, with the great beard." His portrait is still preserved at
Paul and Hubert too sleep in the valley
of Cressy; For the safety of Edward and Eng
land they fell: My Fathers ! the tears of your country
redress ye: How you fought! how you died ! still her annals can tell.
5. On Marston, with Rupert,} 'gainst trai
tors contending, Four brothers enrich'd, with their
blood, the bleak field; For the rights of a monarch their country
defending, Till death their attachment to royalty
seal'd.' 1 Horistan Castle, in Derbyshire, an ancient seat of the Byron family.
2 The Battle of Marston Moor, where the adherents of Charles I. were defeated.
& Son of the Elector Palatine, and related to Charles I. He afterwards commanded the Fleet, in the reign of Charles II.
* (Sir Nicholas Byron, the great-grandson of Sir John Byron the Little, distinguished himself in the Civil Wars. He was Governor of Carlisle, and afterwards Governor of Chester. His nephew and heir-at-law, Sir John Byron, of Clayton, K.B. (1500-1652), was raised to the peerage as Baron Byron of Rochdale, after the Battle of Newbury, October 20, 1643. He died childless, and was succeeded by his brother Richard, the second lord, from whom the poet was descended. Five younger brothers, as Richard's monument in the chancel of Hucknall Torkard Church records. "faithfully served King Charles the First in the Civil Wars, suffered much for their loyalty, and lost all their present fortunes.”
(See Life of Lord Byron, by Karl Elze: Appendix, Note (A), p. 436.)]
Hush'd are the winds, and still the even
ing gloom, Not e'en a zephyr wanders through Whilst I return to view my Margaret's
tomb, And scatter flowers on the dust I love.
7. Though a tear dim his eye at this sad
separation, 'Tis nature, not fear, that excites his
regret; Far distant he goes, with the same emu
lation, The fame of his fathers he ne'er can forget.
8. 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!
1803. [First printed, December, 1806.]
Within this narrow cell reclines her clav, That clay, where once such animation
beam'd; The King of Terrors seiz'd her as his
prey; Not worth, nor beauty, have her life
3. Oh! could that King of Terrors pity
feel, Or Heaven reverse the dread decree of
1 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 composed at the age of fourteen), and his first essay, he preferred submitting it to the indulgence of his friends in its present state, to making either addition or alteration.
(“My first dash into poetry was as early as 1800. It was the ebullition of a passin for my first cousin, Margaret Parker (daughter and granddaughter 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 eves - her long eye-lashes -- her completely Greek cast of face and figure! I was then about twelve --- she rather older, perhaps 3 year. She died about a year or two wards. Some years after I made attempt at an elegy -- a very dull one.' Leliers, 1001, V. 449.
Margaret Parker was the sister of Sir Peter Parker, whose death at Baltimore, in 1814. Byron celebrated in the “Elegiac Stanzas, which were first published in the poems at tached to the tenth edition of Childe Harold (1815).)
Our souls at least congenial meet,
Nor can thy lot my rank disgrace; Our intercourse is not less sweet, Since worth of rank supplies the place.
November, 1802. [First printed, December, 1806.]
was, according to Moore, a boy of Byron's own age, the son of one of the tenants at Newstead. )
3. And, when the grave restores her dead,
When life again to dust is given, On thy dear breast I'll lay my head Without thee! where would be my Heaven? February, 1803. [First printed, December, 1806.]
Vot here the mourner would his grief
reveal, Vot here the Muse her virtues would relate.
4. But wherefore weep? Her matchless
spirit soars Beyond where splendid shines the orb
of day; And weeping angels lead her to those
bowers, Where endless pleasures virtuous deeds repay.
5. And shall presumptuous mortals Heaven
arraign! And, madly, Godlike Providence
accuse! Ah! no, iar fly from me attempts so
vain; — I'll ne'er submission to my God refuse.
6. Yet is remembrance of those virtues dear, Yet fresh the memory of that beaute
ous face; Still they call forth my warm affection's
tear, Still in my heart retain their wonted place.
1802. [First printed, December, 1806.]
3. But, when our cheeks with anguish
glow'd, When thy sweet lips were join'd to
mine; The tears that from my eyelids flow'd Were lost in those which fell from
4. Thou could'st not feel my burning cheek, Thy gushing tears had quench'd its
flame, And, as thy tongue essay'd to speak,
In sighs alone it breath'd my name.
In thee, I fondly hop'd to clasp
Detach'd thee from my breast for
2. True, she has forc'd thee from my breast,
Yet, in my heart, thou keep'st thy seat; There, there, thine image still must rest,
Cntil that heart shall cease to beat. '(George John, 5th Earl Delawart (1791
5. And yet, my girl, we weep in vain,
In vain our fate in sighs deplore; Remembrance only can remain, But that, will make us weep the more.
6. Again, thou best belov’d, adieu !
Ah! if thou canst, o'ercome regret, Nor let thy mind past joys review, Our only hope is, to forget! 1805,
[First printed, December, 1806.)