Sidor som bilder

He cannot curb his baughty mood, Nor I forgive a father's blood.

XVI. « Within thy father's house are foes;

Not all who break his bread are true :
To these should I my birth disclose,

His days, his very hours were few :
They only want a heart to lead,
A hand to point them to the deed.
But Haroun only knows, or knew

This tale, whose close is almost nigh:
He in Abdallah's palace grew,

And held that post in his Serai

Which holds he here — he saw him die : But what could single slavery do ? Avenge his lord ? alas ! too late ; Or save his son from such a fate ? He chose the last, and when elate

With foes subdued, or friends betray'd, Proud Giatfir in high triumph sate, He ledd me helpless to his gate,

And not in vain it seems essay'd

To save the life for which he pray'd. The knowledge of my birth secured

From all and each, but most from me ; Thus Giaffir's safety was ensured.

Removed he too from Roumelie
To this our Asiatic side,
Far from our seats by Danube's tide,

With none but Haroun, who retains Such knowledge and that Nubian feels

A tyrant's secrets are but chains,
From which the captive gladly steals,
And this and more to me reveals :
Such still to guilt just Alla sends -
Slaves, tools, accomplices — no friends !

Though oft - Oh, Mahomet ! how oft!-
In full Divan the despot scoff'd,
As if my weak unwilling hand
Refused the bridle or the brand :
He ever went to war alone,
And pent me here untried - unknown ;
To Haroun's carc with women left,
By hope unblest, of fame bereft.
While thou — whose softness long endeard,
Though it unmann'd me, still had cheer'd
To Brusa's walls for safety sent,
Awaitedst there the field's event.
Haroun, who saw my spirit pining

Beneath inaction's sluggish yoke,
Ilis captive, though with dread resigning,

My thraldom for a season broke, On promise to return before The day when Giaffir's charge was o'er. 'Tis vain — my tongue can not impart My almost drunkenness of heart, When first this liberated eye Survey'd Earth, Ocean, Sun, and Sky, As if my spirit pierced them through, And all their inmost wonders knew ! One word alone can paint to thee That more than feeling - I was Free ! E'en for thy presence ceased to pine ; The World — nay, Heaven itself was mine!

“ The shallop of a trusty Moor

Convey'd me from this idle shore;
I long'd to see the isles that gem
Old Ocean's purple diadem :
I sought by turns, and saw them all;'

But when and where I join'd the crew, With whom I'm pledg'd to rise or fall,

When all that we design to do.
Is done, 't will then be time more meet
To tell thee, when the tale's complete.

“ 'Tis true, they are a lawless brood,

But rough in form, nor mild in mood ;
And every creed, and every race,
With them hath found — may find a place :
But open speech, and ready hand,
Obedience to their chief's command;
A soul for every enterprise,
That never sees with terror's eyes;
Friendship for each, and faith to all,
And vengeance vow'd for those who fall,
Have made them fitting instruments
For more than ev'n my own intents.
And some — and I have studied all

Distinguish'd from the vulgar rank,
But chiefly to my council call

The wisdom of the cautious Frank And some to higher thoughts aspire,

The last of Lambro's ? patriots there

Anticipated freedom share;
And oft around the cavern fire
On visionary schemes debate,
To snatch the Rayahs 3 from their fate.

XVII. “All this, Zuleika, harshly sounds ;

But harsher still my tale must be : Howe'er my tongue thy softness wounds,

Yet I must prove all truth to thee.

I saw thee start this garb to see, Yet is it one I oft have worn,

And long must wear: this Galiongée, To whom thy plighted vow is sworn,

Is leader of those pirate hordes,

Whose laws and lives are on their swords ; To hear whose desolating tale Would make thy waning cheek more pale : Those arms thou see'st my band have brought, The hands that wield are not remote; This cup too for the rugged knaves

Is fill'd - once quaff'd, they ne'er repine : Our prophet might forgive the slaves ;

They're only infidels in wine.

XVIII. " What could I be ? Proscribed at home, And taunted to a wish to roam ; And listless left for Giaffir's fear Denied the courser and the spear

The Turkish notions of almost all islands are confined to the Archipelago, the sea alluded to.

? Lambro Canzani, a Greek, famous for his efforts in 1789, for the independence of his country. Abandoned by the Russians, he became a pirate, and the Archipelago was the

scene of his enterprises. He is said to be still alive at Peters. burg. He and Riga ure the two most celebrated of the Greek revolutionists.

3." Rayahs," – all who pay the capitation tax, called the " Haratch."

I like the rest must use my skill or strength,
But ask no land beyond my sabre's length :
Power sways but by division - ber resource
The blest alternative of fraud or force !
Ours be the last; in time deceit may come
When cities cage us in a social home :
There ev'n thy soul might ert - how oft the heart
Corruption shal which peril co id not part !
And woman, more than man, when death or woe,
Or even disgrace, would lay her lover low,
Sunk in the lap of luxury will shame -
Away suspicion !- not Zuleika's name !
But life is hazard at the best; and here
No more remains to win, and much to fear :
Yes, fear.- the doubt, the dread of losing thee,
By Osman's power, and Giaffir's stern decrec.
That dread shall vanish with the favouring gale,
Which Love to-night hath promised to my sail :
No danger daunts the pair his smile hath blest,
Their steps still roving, but their hearts at rest.
With thee all toils are sweet, each clime hath charms;
Earth - sea alike - our world within our arms !
Ay — let the loud winds whistle o'er the deck,
So that those arms cling closer round my neck:
The deepest murmur of this lip shall be 7
No sigh for safety, but a prayer for thee !
The war of elements no fears impart
To Love, whose deadliest bane is human Art:
There lie the only rocks our course can check :
Here moments menace - there are years of wreck!
But hence ye thoughts that rise in Horror's shape !
This hour bestows, or ever bars escape.
Few words remain of mine my tale to close :
Of thine but one to waft us from our foes ;
Yea - foes — to me will Giaffir's hate decline ?
And is not Osman, who would part us, thine ?

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So let them case their hearts with prate
Of equal rights, which man ne'er knew;

have a love for freedom too.
Ay! let me like the ocean-Patriarch ' roam,
Or only know on land the Tartar's home !!
My tent on shore, my galley on the sea,
Are more than citics and Serais to me:
Borne by my steed, or wafted by my sail,
Across the desert, or before the gale,
Bound where thou wilt, sny barb! or glide, my prow!
But be the star that guides the wanderer, Thou !
Thou, my Zuleika, share and bless my bark;
The Dove of peace and promise to mine ark !3
Or, since that hope denied in worlds of strife,
Be thou the rainbow to the storms of life!
The evening beam that smiles the clouds away,
And tints to-morrow with prophetic ray! 4
Blest — as the Muezzin's strain from Mecca's wall
To pilgrims pure and prostrate at his call;
Soft - as the melody of youthful days,
That steals the trembling tear of speechless praise ;
Dear - as his native song to Exile's ears,
Shall sound each tone thy long-loved voice endears
For thee in those bright isles is built a bower
Blooming as Aden 5 in its earliest hour.
A thousand swords, with Selim's heart and hand,
Wait - wave - defend — destroy - at thy command !
Girt by my band, Zuleika at my side,
The spoil of nations shall bedeck my bride.
The Haram's languid years of listless ease
Are well resign'd for cares — for joys like these :
Not blind to fate, I see, where'er I rove,
Unnumber'd perils, – but one only love!
Yet well my toils shall that fond breast repay,
Though fortune frown, or falser friends betray.
How dear the dream in darkest hours of ill,
Should all be changed, to find thee faithful still !
Be but thy soul, like Selim's, firmly shown ;
To thee be Selim's tender as thine own;
To soothe each sorrow, share in each delight,
Blend every thought, do all — but disunite !
Once free, 't is mine our horde again to guide :
Friends to each other, foes to aught beside : 6
Yet there we follow but the bent assign'd
By fatal Nature to man's warring kind :
Mark ! where his carnage and his conquests cease !
He makes a solitude, and calls it peace!

The first of royages is one of the few with which the Mussulmans profess much acquaintance.

2 The wandering life of the Arabs, Tartars, and Turkomans, will be found well detailed in any book of Eastern travels. That it possesses a charm peculiar to itself, cannot be denied. A young French renegado confessed to Chateaubriand, that he never found himself alone, galloping in the desert, without a sensation approaching to rapture, which was indescribable.

3 [The longest, as well as most splendid, of those passages, with which the perusal of his own strains, during revision, inspired him, was that rich flow of eloquent feeling which follows the couplet, —." Thou, my Zuleika, share and bless my bark,” &c.-a strain of poetry, which, for energy and tenderness of thought, for music of versification, and select. ness of dicti has, throughout the greater portion of it, but few rivals in either ancient or modern song. - MOORE.) • (Originally written thus

" And tints to-morrow with {amarieyed }ray." The following note being annexed : _"Mr. Murray, choose which of the two epithets, 'fancied,' or .airy,' may be hest ; or is neither will do, tell me, and I will dream another." In a subsequent letter, he says : -" Instead of

* And tints to-morrow with a fancied ray, Print

" And tints to-morrow with prophetic ray;

" And gilds to-morrow's hope with heavenly ray. I wish you would ask Mr. Gifford which of them is best ; or rather, not worst."]

5" Jannat al Aden," the perpetual atode, the Mussulman paradise.

(" You wanted some reflections ; and I send you, per Selim, eighteen lines in decent couplets, of a pensive, if not an ethical, tendency. One more revise-positively the last, if decently done at any rate, the penultimate. Mr. Can. ping's approbation, I need not say, makes me proud.. To make you some amends for eternally pestering you with alterations, I send you Cobbett, - to confirm your orthodoxy."

Lord B. !o Mr. Jurray.] ? [“ Then if my lip once murmurs, it must be." - - MS.)

• [Mr. Canning's note was as follows:-"I received the books, and among them, the • Bride of Abrdos.'

It is very, very beautiful. Lord Byron (when I met him, one day, at a dinner at Mr. Ward's) was so kind as to promise to give me a copy of it.

I mention this, not to sare my purchase, but because I should be really flattered i; the present."]

I form the plan, decrce the spoil,
'Tis fit I oftener share the toil.
But now too long I've held thine ear;
Time presses, foats my bark, and here
We leave behind but hate and fear.
To-morrow Osman with his train
Arrives - to-night must break thy chain :
And wouldst thou save that haughty Bey,

Perchance, his life who gave thee thine, With me, this hour away — away!

But yet, though thou art plighted mine, Would'st thou recall thy willing vow, Appail'd by truths imparted now, Here rest I-not to see thee wed : But be that peril on my head !”

One bound he made, and gain'd the sand :

Already at his feet hath sunk
The foremost of the prying band,

A gasping head, a quivering trunk :
Another falls - but round him close
A swarming circle of his foes;
From right to left his path he cleft,

And almost met the meeting wave :
His boat appears - not five oars' length
Ilis comrades strain with desperate strength -

Oh! are they yet in time to save ? Ilis feet the foremost breakers lave; His bard are plunging in the bay, Their sabres glitter through the spray; Wet wild unwearied to the strand They struggle - now they touch the land ! They come - 't is but to add to slaughter Ilis heart's best blood is on the water.

Zuleika, mute and motionless,
Stood like that statue of distress,
When, her last hope for ever gone,
The mother harden'd into stone ;
All in the maid that eye could sce
Was but a younger Niobé.
But ere her lip, or even ber eye,
Essay'd to speak, or look reply,
Beneath the garden's wicket porch
Far flash'd on high a blazing torch !
Another - and another - and another-
* Oh ! fly - no more — yet now my more than

Far, wide, through every thicket spread,
The fearful lights are gleaming red ;
Nor these alone — for each right hand
Is ready with a sheathless brand.
They part, pursue, return, anii wheel
With searching flambeau, shining steel;
And last of all, his sabre waving,
Stern Giaffir in his fury raving :
And now almost they touch the cave -
Oh! must that grot be Selim's grave ?

Escaped from shot, unharm’d by steel,
Or scarcely grazed its force to feel,
Ilad Selim won, betray'd, beset,
To where the strand and billows met :
There as his last step left the land,
And the last death-blow dealt his hand
Ah! wherefore did he turn to look

For her his eye but sought in vain ?
That pause, that fatal gaze he took,

Hath doom'd his death, or fix'd his chain. Sad proof, in peril and in pain, How late will Lover's hope reinain ! His back was to the dashing spray ; Behind, but close, his comrades lay, When, at the instant, hiss'd the ball “So may the foes of Giaffir fall !” Whose voice is heard ? whose carbine rang ? Whose bullet through the night-air sang, Too nearly, deadly aim'd to ert ? Tis thine — Abdallah's Murderer! The father slowly rued thy hate, The son hath found a quicker fate : Fast from his breast the blood is bubbling, The whiteness of the sca-foam troubling If aught his lips essay'd to groan, The rushing billows choked the tone !

Dauntless he stood -"'T is come — soon past
One kiss, Zuleika —'tis my last :

But yet my band not far from shore
May hear this signal, see the flash;
Yet now too few — the attempt were rash :

No matter — yet one effort more.”
Forth to the cavern mouth he stept;

His pistol's echo rang on high, Zuleika started not, nor wept,

Despair benumb'd her breast and eye!* They hear me not, or if they ply Their oars, 't is but to see me die ; That sound hath drawn my foes morc nigh. Then forth my father's scimitar, Thou ne'er hast seen less equal war ! Farewell, Zuleika!- Sweet ! retire :

Yet stay within - here linger safe,

At thee his rage will only chafe.
Stir not-lest even to thee perchance
Some erring blade or ball should glance.
Fear'st thou for him ? may I expire
If in this strife I seek thy sire !
No – though by him that poison pour'd:
No - though again he call me coward !
But tamely shall I meet their steel ?
No - as each crest save his may feel !"

Morn slowly rolls the clouds away ;

Few trophies of the fight are there : The shouts that shook the midnight-bay Are silent; but some signs of fray

That strand of strife may bear, And fragments of each shiver'd brand ; Steps stampd; and dash'd into the sand The print of many a struggling band

May there be mark'd ; nor far remote

A broken torch, an oarless boat; And tangled on the weeds that heap The beach where shelving to the deep

There lies a white capote ! 'Tis rent in twain - one dark-red stain The wave yet ripples o'er in vain :

But where is he who wore ?
Ye ! who would o'er his relics weep).

Go, seek them where the surges sweep
Their burthen round Sigæum's steep

And cast on Lemnos' sliore :
The sea-birds shriek above the prey,
O'er which their hungry beaks delay,
As shaken on his restless pillow,
His head heaves with the heaving billow;
That hand, whose motion is not life,
Yet feebly seems to menace strife,
Flung by the tossing tide on high,

Then levellid with the wave I -
What recks it, though that corse shall lie

Within a living grave ?
The bird that tears that prostrate form
Hath only robb'd the meaner worm ;
The only heart, the only eye
Had bled or wept to see him die,
Had seen those scatter'd limbs composed,

And mournd above his turban-stone, That heart hath burst - that cye was closed

Yea - closed before his own!

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By Helle's stream there is a voice of wail !
And woman's eye is wet — man's cheek is pale :
Zuleika ! last of Giaffir's race,

Thy destined lord is come too late :
He sees not — ne'er shall see thy face !

Can he not hear
The loud Wul-wulleh 3 warn his distant ear ?

Thy handmaids weeping at the gate,
The Koran-chanters of the hymn of fate,

The silent slaves with folded arms that wait,
Sighs in the hall, and shrieks upon the gale,

Tell him thy tale !
Thou didst not view thy Selim fall !
That fearful moment when he left the cave

Thy heart grew chill :
He was thy hope — thy joy — thy love thine all-
And that last thought on him thou could'st not save

Sufficed to kill,
Burst forth in one wild cry - and all was still.

Peace to thy broken heart, and virgin grave !
Ah! happy! but of life to lose the worst !
That grief — though deep — though fatal – was thy

first ! Thrice happy! ne'er to feel nor fear the force Of absence, shame, pride, hate, revenge, remorse ! And, oh! that pang where more than madness lies! The worm that will not sleep — and never dies; 'Thought of the gloomy day and ghastly night, That dreads the darkness, and yet loathes the light, That winds around, and tears the quivering heart ! Ah! wherefore not consume it — and depart ! Woe to thee, rash and unrelenting chief !

Vainly thou heap'st the dust upon thy head, Vainly the sackcloth o'er thy limbs dost spread; By that same hand Abdallah – Selim bled.

Within the place of thousand tombs

That shine beneath, while dark above
The sad but living cypress glooms,

And withers not, though branch and leaf Are stamp'd with an eternal grief,

Like early unrequited Love,
One spot exists, which ever blooms,

Ev’n in that deadly grove -
A single rose is shedding there

Its lonely lustre, meek and pale : It looks as planted by Despair

So white — so faint — the slightest gale Might whirl the leaves on high;

And yet, though storms and blight assail, And hands more rude than wintry sky

May wring it from the stem - in vain

To-morrow sees it bloom again ! The stalk some spirit gently rears, And waters with celestial tears ;

For well may maids of Helle deem
That this can be no earthly flower,
Which mocks the tempest's withering hour,
And buds unshelter'd by a bower;
Nor droops, though spring refuse ber shower,

Nor woos the summer beam :
To it the livelong night there sings

A bird unseen — but not remote :
Invisible his airy wings,
But soft as harp that Houri strings

His long entrancing note !
It were the Bulbul; but his throat,

Though mournful, pours not such a strain :
For they who listen cannot leave
The spot, but linger there and grieve,

As if they loved in vain !
And yet so sweet the tears they shed,
'Tis sorrow so unmix'd with dread,
They scarce can bear the morn to break

That melancholy spell,
And longer yet would weep and wake,

He sings so wild and well !
Cut when the day-blush bursts from high
Expires that magic melody.
And some have been who could believe,
(So fondly youthful dreams deceive,

!" While the Salsette lay off the Dardanelles, Lord Byron saw the body of a man who had been executed by being cast into the sea, floating on the stream to and fro with the trem. bling of the water, which gave to its arms the etfect of scaring away sereral sea-fowl that were horering to devour. This incident has been strikingly depicted." – Galt.)

? A turban is carved in stone above the graves of men only. 3 The death-song of the Turkish women. The “ silent

slaves" are the men, whose notions of decorum forbid complaint in public.

4" I came to the place of my birth, and cried, • The friends of my youth, where are they?' and an Echo answered, • Where are they?'"- From an Arabic MS. The above quotation (from which the idea in the text is taken must be already familiar to every reader : it is given in the first an. notation, p. 67., of " The Pleasures of Memory;" a poem so well known as to render a reference almost superfluous; but to whose pages all will be delighted to recur.

Yet harsh be they that blame,)
That note so piercing and profound
Will shape and syllable 1 its sound

Into Zuleika's name. ?
'Tis from her cypress' summit heard,
That melts in air the liquid word :
*T is from her lowly virgin earth
That white rose takes its tender birth.
There late was laid a marble stone ;
Eve saw it placed - the Morrow gone !
It was no mortal arm that bore
That deep fixed pillar to the shore ;

For there, as Helle's legends tell,
Next morn 't was found where Selim fell ;
Lash'd by the tumbling tide, whose wave
Denied his bones a holier grave :

And there by night, reclined, 't is said,
Is secn a ghastly turban'd head :
And hence extended by the billow,
"Tis named the “ Pirate-phantom's pillow !
Where first it lay that mourning flower

Hath flourished ; flourisheth this hour,
Alone and dewy, coldly pure and pale ;
As weeping Beauty's cheek at Sorrow's tale ! 3

The Corsair,


I suoi pensieri in lui dormir non ponno."

Tasso, Gerusalemine Liberata, canto x.



only regret, since our first acquaintance, has been

the years he had lost before it commenced, to add MY DEAR Moore,

the humble but sincere suffrage of friendship, to the I DEDICATE to you the last production with which voice of more than one nation. It will at least I shall trespass on public patience, and your indul. prove to you, that I have neither forgotten the gence, for some years; and I own that I feel anxious gratification derived from your society, nor abanto avail myself of this latest and only opportunity doned the prospect of its renewal, whenever your of adorning my pages with a name, consecrated by leisure or inclination allows you to atone to your unshaken public principle, and the most undoubted friends for too long an absence. It is said among and various talents. While Ireland ranks you among those friends, I trust truly, that you are engaged in the firmest of her patriots; while you stand alone the composition of a poem whose scene will be laid the first of her bards in her estimation, and Britain in the East; none can do those scenes so much jus. repeats and ratifies the decree, permit one, whose tice. The wrongs of your own country 5, the mag

1 * And airy tongues that syllable men's names."-Milton. [“ The Bride,' such as it is, is my first entire composiFor a belief that the souls of the dead inhabit the form of

tion of any length (except the Satire, and be dd to it), for birds, we need not travel to the East. Lord Lyttleton's ghost

the 'Giaour' is but a string of passages, and Childe Harold' story, the belief of the Duchess of Kendal, that George I. flew

is, and I rather think always will be, unconcluded.

It was into her window in the shape of a raven (see Orford's Remi

published on Thursday, the 2d of December ; but how it is niscences), and many other instances, bring this superstition

liked, I know not. Whether it succeeds or not, is no fault of Dearer home. The most singular was the whim of a Wor.

the public, against whom I can have no complaint. But I am cester lady, who, believing her daughter to exist in the shape

much more indebted to the tale than I can ever be to the of a singing bird, literally furnished her pew in the cathedral most important reader; as it wrung my thoughts from reality with ciges full of the kind; and as she was rich, and a bene

to imagination ; from selfish regrets to vivid recollections ; factress in beautifying the church, no objection was made to

and recalled me to a country replete with the brightest and her harmless folly. For this anecdote, see Orford's Letters.

darkest, but always most lively colours of my memory." —

Byron Diary, Dec. 5. 1813.) ? [The heroine of this poem, the blooming Zuleika, is all purity and loveliness.

* (" The Corsair" was begun on the 18th, and finished on Never was a faultless character more

the 31st, of December, 1813; a rapidity of composition which, delicately or more justly delineated. Her piety, her intelli.

taking into consideration the extraordinary beauty of the gence, her strict sense of duty, and her undeviating love of

poem, is, perhaps, unparalleled in the literary history of the truth, appear to have been originally blended in her mind, rather than inculcated by education. She is always natural,

country. Lord Byron states it to have been written “con

amore, and very much from eristence." In the original MS. always attractive, always affectionate ; and it must be ad.

the chief female character was called Francesca, in whose Initted that her affections are not unworthily bestowed. Selim, while an orphan and dependant, is never" degraded by cala

person the author meant to delineate one of his acquaintance;

but, while the work was at press, he changed the name to mity; when better hopes are presented to him, his buoyant spirit rises with his expectations : he is enterprising, with no

Medora.] more rashness than becomes his youth ; and when disap- (This political allusion having been objected to by a pointed in the success of a well-concerted project, he meets, friend, Lord Byron sent a second dedication to Mr. Moore,

with intrepidity, the fate to which he is exposed through his with a request that he would “take his choice." It ran as I owo generous forbearance. To us, “ The Bride of Abydos" follows:

appears to be, in every respect, superior to “ The Giaour," though, in point of diction, it has been, perhaps, less warmly


January 7th, 1814. adraired We will not argue this point, but will simply ob

" I had written to you a long letter of dedication, serre, that what is read with ease is generally read with rapi. which I suppress, because, though it contained something dity; and that many beauties of style which escape observation relating to you, which every one had been glad to hear, yet in a simple and connected narrative, would be forced on the there was too much about politics, and poess, and all things reader's attention by abrupt and perplexing transitions. It whatsoever, ending with that topic on which most men are is only when a traveller is obliged to stop on his journey, that fuent, and none very amusing, - one's self. It might hare he is disposed to examine and admire the prospect.-GEORGE been re-writicn; but to what purpose? Jy praise could add ELLIS.)

nothing to your well-earned and tirruly established fame;

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