Sidor som bilder

late ;


- the pure poetry of the feeling had “ And if I laugh at any mortal thing, vanished; and those tears he shed so pas

'Tis that I may not weep." | sionately in the garden at Bologna flowed This laughter, — which, in such temperless, perhaps, from the love which he felt at aments, is the near neighbour of tears, that moment, than from the saddening con- served as a diversion to him from more painsciousness how differently he could have ful vents of bitterness ; and the same phifelt formerly. It was, indeed, wholly beyond losophical calculation which made the poet the power, even of an imagination like his, of melancholy, Young, declare that “he preto go on investing with its own ideal glories ferred laughing at the world to being angry a sentiment which, - more from daring and with it,” led Lord Byron also to settle upon vanity than from any other impulse, — he the same conclusion ; and to feel, in the had taken such pains to tarnish and debase misanthropic views he was inclined to take in his own eyes.

Accordingly, instead of of mankind, that mirth often saved him the being able, as once, to elevate and embellish pain of hate. all that interested him, to make an idol of That, with so many drawbacks upon all every passing creature of his fancy, and mis- generous effusions of sentiment, he should take the form of love, which he so often still have preserved so much of his native conjured up, for its substance, he now de- tenderness and ardour as is conspicuous, generated into the wholly opposite and per- through all disguises, in his unquestionable verse error of depreciating and making light love for Madame Guiccioli

, and in the still of what, intrinsically, he valued, and, as the more undoubted zeal with which he nos reader has seen, throwing slight and mockery entered, heart and soul, into the great cause upon a tie in which it was evident some of of human freedom, whèresoever or by whomthe best feelings of his nature were wrapped soever asserted ?, — only shows how rich up. That foe to all enthusiasm and romance, must have been the original stores of sensithe habit of ridicule, had, in proportion as bility and enthusiasm which even a career he exchanged the illusions for the realities such as his could so little chill or exhaust. of life, gained further empire over him ; and Most consoling, too, is it to reflect that the how far it had, at this time, encroached upon few latter years of his life should have been the loftier and fairer regions of his mind may thus visited with a return of that poetic be seen in the pages of Don Juan, — that lustre, which, though it never had ceased to diversified arena, on which the two Genii, surround the bard, had but too much faded good and evil, that governed his thoughts, away from the character of the man ; and hold, with alternate triumph, their ever- that while Love, — reprehensible as it was, powerful combat.

but still Love, - had the credit of rescuing Even this, too, this vein of mockery, — in him from the only errors that disgraced his the excess to which, at last, he carried it, maturer years, for Liberty was reserved the was but another result of the shock his proud but mournful triumph of calling the proud mind had received from those events last stage of his glorious course her own, that had cast him off, branded and heart and lighting him, arnidst the sympathies of stricken, from country and from home. As the world, to his grave. he himself touchingly says,

1p" Now my sere fancy falls into the yellow

Leaf,' and Imagination droops her pinion, And the sad truth which hovers o'er my desk

Turns what was once romantic to burlesque : And if I laugh at any mortal thing,

'Tis that I may not weep; and if I weep, 'Tis that our nature cannot always bring

Itself to apathy, for we must steep
Our hearts first in the depths of Lethe's spring
Ere what we least wish to behold will sleep,”' &c.

Don Juan, c. iv. st. 4.]

masters, in the midst of slaves. It makes my blood boil to see the thing. I sometimes wish that I was the owner of Africa, to do at once what Wilberforce will do in time, viz, sweep slavery from her deserts, and look on upon the first dance of their freedom.

“ As to political slavery, so general, it is men's own fault: if they will be slaves, let them! Yet it is but a word and a blow.' See how England formerly, France, Spain, Portugal, America, Switzerland, freed themselves ! There is no one instance of a long coutest in which men did not triumph over systems. If Tyran ay misses her first spring, she is cowardly as the tiger, and retires to be hunted." [“ O Wilberforce ! thou man of black renown,

Whose merit none enough can sing or say, Thou hast struck one immense Colossus down, Thou moral Washington of Africa."

Don Juan, c. xiv. st. 2.)

? Among his “Detached Thoughts" I find this general passion for liberty thus strikingly expressed. After saying, in reference to his own choice of Venice as a place of residence, “I remernbered General Ludlow's domal inscription, Omne solum forti patria,' and sat down free in a country which had been one of slavery for centuries,” he adds, “But there is no freedom, even for

[ocr errors]






[ocr errors]



of to-day, so that there were two d-d things at once. Could not even get to ride

on horseback in the forest. Stayed at home CHAPTER XLI.

all the morning - looked at the fire

wondered when the post would come. Post 1821.

came at the Ave Maria, instead of half-past

one o'clock, as it ought. Galignani's MesRAVENNA.- DIARY.-FAME. --RICHARDSON.

sengers, six in number - a letter from SCOTT'S NOVELS. VES- Faenza, but none from England. Very TRIS THE COMEDIAN. — FEMALE EDUCA- sulky in consequence (for there ought to TION.- ENNUI. -SWIFT.-DYING AT TOP. have been letters), and ate in consequence a — JOHNSON'S VANITY OF HUMAN WISHES. copious dinner ; for when I am vexed, it - SHARP THE CONVERSATIONIST. — VAC- makes me swallow quicker — but drank very

CAMPBELL'S POETS. - HO- little. MER, TALE OF TROY. - MARINO FA- “I was out of spirits — read the papers

GRILLPARZER. thought what fame was, on reading, in a case SARDANAPALUS. - JAVA GAZETTE. of murder, that Mr. Wych, grocer, at Tun

GREY, LAWRENCE, - bridge, sold some bacon, flour, cheese, and, THE EDGEWORTHS IN LONDON. HYPO- it is believed, some pluins, to some gipsy CHONDRIA, REGNARD.

woman accused. He had on his counter (I THIRTY!

quote faithfully) a book, the Life of Pamela,

which he was tearing for waste paper, &c. &c. Having endeavoured, in this comparison In the cheese was found, &c. and a leaf between his present and former self, to ac- of Pamela wrapt round the bacon. What count, by what I consider to be their true

would Richardson, the vainest and luckiest causes, for the new phenomena which his of living authors (i. e. while alive)—he who, character, at this period, exhibited, I shall with Aaron Hill, used to prophesy and chuckle now lay before the reader the JOURNAL by over the presumed fall of Fielding (the prose which these remarks were more immediately Homer of human nature) and of Pope (the suggested, and from which I fear they will most beautiful of poets) — what would he be thought to have too long detained him. have said, could he have traced his pages

from their place on the French prince's toilets EXTRACTS FROM A DIARY OF LORD BYRON, (see Boswell's Johnson') to the grocer's coun

ter and the gipsy-murderess's bacon !!!3 " Ravenna, January 4. 1821. “ What would he have said ? what can “* A sudden thought strikes me.' Let me any body say, save what Solomon said long begin a Journal once more. The last I kept before us ? After all, it is but passing from was in Switzerland, in record of a tour made one counter to another, from the bookseller's in the Bernese Alps, which I made to send to the other tradesman's-grocer or pastryto my sister in 1816, and I suppose that she cook. For my part, I have met with most has it still, for she wrote to me that she poetry upon trunks ; so that I am apt to was pleased with it. Another, and longer, I consider the trunk-maker as the sexton of kept in 1813-1814, which I gave to Thomas authorship.

I Moore in the same year.

“ Wrote five letters in about half an hour, “ This morning I gat me up late, as usual short and savage, to all my rascally corre- weather bad — bad as England - worse. spondents. Carriage came. Heard the news The snow of last week melting to the sirocco of three murders at Faenza and Forli — a


[ocr errors]

" ["* Richardson seems to have joloed Aaron Hill in said, but took advantage of the first general pause to the cuckoo-song, that Pope had written himself out ; address the gentleman with — Sir, I think you were and the dislike which he manifests towards Fielding, saying something about'- and then stopped in a futter breaks out too often, and is too anxiously veiled under of expectation ; which his guest mortified by replying, an affectation of charity and candour, not to lead us to • A mere trifle, sir, not worth repeating." Boswell's suspect that the author of Tom Jones was at least as Johnson.] obnoxious to Richardson through the success, as from

3 [" What a master of composition Fielding was ! the alleged immorality, of his productions." - SIR WALTER SCOTT: Prose Works, vol. iii. p. 19.]

Upon my word, I think the Edipus Tyrannus, the Al. 2 (“A gentleman, who had lately been at Paris, sought,

chemist, and Tom Jones the three most perfect plots

ever planned. And how charming, how wholesome, while in a large company at Richardson's villa, to gratify

Fielding always is ! To take him up after Richardson, the landlord by informing him that he had seen his

is like emerging from a sick room heated by stores into Clarissa lying on the king's brother's table. Richardson

an open lawn on a breezy day in May." -- Coleridge's observing that a part of the company were engaged in

Table Talk.) conversation apart, affected not to hear what had been



carabinier, a smuggler, and an attorney Fed the two cats, the hawk, and the tame all last night. The two first in a quarrel, the (but not tamed) crow. Read Mitford's Hislatter by premeditation.

tory of Greece --Xenophon's Retreat of the “ Three weeks ago - almost a month Ten Thousand. Up to this present moment the 7th it was — I picked up the command-writing, 6 minutes before eight o' the clock ant, mortally wounded, out of the street ; French hours, not Italian. he died in my house ; assassins unknown, “ Hear the carriage - order pistols and but presumed political. His brethren wrote great coat, as usual - necessary articles. from Rome last night to thank me for having Weather cold — carriage open, and inhabitassisted him in his last moments. Poor fel. ants somewhat savage— rather treacherous low! it was a pity; he was a good soldier, and highly inflamed by politics. Fine felbut imprudent. It was eight in the evening lows, though, good materials for a nation. when they killed him. We heard the shot ; Out of chaos God made a world, and out of my servants and I ran out, and found him high passions comes a people. expiring, with five wounds, two whereof “ Clock strikes — going out to make love. mortal — by slugs they seemed. I exam- Somewhat perilous, but not disagreeable. ined him, but did not go to the dissection Memorandum ---a new screen put up to-day. next morning.

It is rather antique, but will do with a little Carriage at 8 or so — went to visit La repair. Contessa G. — found her playing on the Thaw continues-hopeful that riding may piano-forte- talked till ten, when the Count, be practicable to-morrow. Sent the papers her father, and the no less Count, her bro- to All'.-grand events coming. ther, came in from the theatre, Play, they "11 o'the clock and nine minutes. Visitsaid, Alfieri's Fileppo— well received. ed La Contessa G. Nata G. G. Found her

“Two days ago the King of Naples passed beginning my letter of answer to the thanks through Bologna on his way to congress. of Alessio del Pinto of Rome for assisting My servant Luigi brought the news. I had his brother the late Commandant in his last sent him to Bologna for a lamp. How will moments, as I had begged her to pen my it end? Time will show.

reply for the purer Italian, I being an ultraCame home at eleven, or rather before. montane, little skilled in the set phrase If the road and weather are comfortable, of Tuscany. Cut short the letter - finish it mean to ride to-morrow. High time—al another day. Talked of Italy, patriotism, most a week at this work — snow, sirocco, Alfieri, Madame Albany, and other branches one day — frost and snow the other— sad of learning. Also Sallust's Conspiracy of climate for Italy. But the two seasons, last Catiline, and the War of Jugurtha. At 9 and present, are extraordinary. Read a came in her brother, Il Conte Pietro-at 10, Life of Leonardo da Vinci by Rossi — rumi- her father, Conte Ruggiero. nated wrote this much, and will go to bed. “Talked of various modes of warfare

January 3. 1821.

of the Hungarian and Highland modes of “ Rose late — dull and drooping - the broard-sword exercise, in both whereof I was weather dripping and dense. Snow on the once a moderate master of fence. Settled ground, and sirocco above in the sky, like that the R. will break out on the 7th or yesterday. Roads up to the horse's belly, 8th of March, in which appointment I should so that riding (at least for pleasure) is not trust, had it not been settled that it was to very feasible. Added a postscript to my letter have broken out in October, 1820. But those to Murray. Read the conclusion, for the Bolognese shirked the Romagnuoles. fiftieth time (I have read all W. Scott's

“ . It is all one to Ranger.' One must novels at least fifty times), of the third series not be particular, but take rebellion when of • Tales of my Landlord,'-— grand work

it lies in the way. Come home - read the Scotch Fielding, as well as great English - Ten Thousand' again, and will go to bed. poet – wonderful man! I long to get drunk

Mem.—Ordered Fletcher (at four o'clock with him.

this afternoon) to copy out seven or eight “ Dined versus six o' the clock. Forgot apophthegms of Bacon', in which I have that there was a plum-pudding, (I have added, detected such blunders as a schoolboy might lately, eating to my family of vices,') and detect rather than commit. Such are the had dined before I knew iť. Drank half a sages! What must they be, when such as I bottle of some sort of spirits - probably can stumble on their mistakes or mistatespirits of wine ; for what they call brandy, ments? I will go to bed, for I find that I rum, &c. &c. here is nothing but spirits of grow cynical. wine, coloured accordingly. Did not eat two apples, which were placed by way of dessert.

[Sce Works, p. 808.)


[ocr errors]


him so.


“ January 6. 1821. The crow is lame of a leg — wonder how “ Mist—thaw-slop-rain. No stirring

it happened some fool trod upon his toe, out on horseback. Read Spence's Anec

I suppose. The falcon pretty brisk - the dotes. Pope a fine fellow — always thought cats large and noisy, the monkeys I have Corrected blunders in nine apoph- not looked to since the cold weather

, as they

Horses must be thegms of Bacon--all historical — and read suffer by being brought up. Mitford's Greece. Wrote an epigram. Turn- gay-get a ride as soon as weather serves.

an Italian winter is a ed to a passage in Guinguené 3 ditto in Lord sad thing, but all the other seasons are charm

Deuced muggy still
Holland's Lope de Vega.' Wrote a note on
Don Juan.

ing. At eight went out to visit. Heard a lit

“ What is the reason that I have been, all tle music — like music. Talked with Count my lifetime, more or less ennuyé ? and that, Pietro G. of the Italian comedian Vestris, who if any thing, I am rather less so now than Í is now at Rome — have seen him often act in was at twenty, as far as my recollection Venice — a good actor


serves very.

s? I do not know how to answer this, of a mannerist ; but excellent in broad co

but presume that it is constitutional,- as medy, as well as in the sentimental pathetic. well as the waking in low spirits, which I He has made me frequently laugh and cry,

have invariably done for many years. Temneither of which is now a very easy matter perance and exercise, which I have practised – at least, for a player to produce in me.

at times, and for a long time together vigor“ Thought of the state of women under ously and violently, made little or no differ

convenient enough. the ancient Greeks

Violent passions did ; - when under Present state a remnant of the barbarism of

their immediate influence it is odd, but the chivalric and feudal ages — artificial and

I was in agitated, but not in depressed, spirits.

“ A dose of salts has the effect of a tempounnatural. They ought to mind homeand be well fed and clothed — but not mix- rary inebriation, like light champagne, upon ed in society. Well educated, too, in religion

But wine and spirits make me sullen

and — but to read neither poetry nor politics

savage to ferocity — silent, however, and nothing but books of piety and cookery. retiring, and not quarrelsome, if not spoken Music — drawing — dancing — also a little to. Swimming also raises my spirits, — but gardening and ploughing now and then. I in general they are low, and get daily lower. have seen them mending the roads in Epirus That is hopeless ; for I do not think I am so with good success. Why not, as well as hay-proof is, that then I must game, or drink, or

much ennuyé as I was at nineteen. The making and milking ?

“ Came home, and read Mitford again, and be in motion of some kind, or I was miseplayed with my mastiff - gave him his sup- and like being alone better than any company

rable. At present, I can mope in quietness ;

I per. Made another reading to the epigram,

except the lady's whom I serve. But I but the turn the same. To-night at the theatre, there being a prince on his throne in feel a something, which makes me think

that, the last scene of the comedy, the audience

if I ever reach near to old age, like Swift, ‘I laughed, and asked him for a Constitution. idiotism or madness so much as he did. On

shall die at top' first. ? Only I do not dread This shows the state of the public mind here, the contrary, I think some quieter stages of as well as the assassinations. It won't do. There must be an universal republic, and both must be preferable to much of what there ought to be.

men think the possession of their senses.


[ocr errors]


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


(" Till Voltaire appeared, there was no nation more in which their language was spoken. Those who feel ignorant of its neighbours' literature than the French. such indignation at his misrepresentations and oversights He first exposed, and then corrected, this neglect in his would find it difficult to produce a critic in any modern countrymen. There is no writer to whom the authors

language, who, in speaking of foreign literature, is betof other nations, especially of England, are so indebted

ter informed or more candid than Voltaire ; and they for the extension of their fame in France, and, through certainly never would be able to discover one who to France, in Europe. There is no critic who has employed those qualities unites so much sagacity and liveliness.” more time, wit, ingenuity, and diligence in promoting Vol. i. p. 215. ed. 1817.] the literary intercourse between country and country, ? ["I remember as I and others were taking with and in celebrating in one language the triumphs of

Swift an evening walk, about a mile out of Dublin, he another. Yet, by a strange fatality, he is constantly stopped short: we passed on; but perceiving he did not represented as the enemy of all literature but his own;

follow us, I went back and found him fixed as a statue, and Spaniards, Englishmen, and Italians vie with each

and earnestly gazing upwards at a noble elm, which, in other in inveighing against his occasional exaggeration its uppermost branches, was much withered and decayed. of faulty passages; the authors of which, till he pointed Pointing at it, he said, ' I shall be like that tree, I shall die out their beauties, were hardly known beyond the country at top." - DR.YOUNG, in his Letter to Richardson.)

[ocr errors]



“ January 7. 1821. Sunday. the troops, even here. With twenty men “ Still rain -mist - snow -drizzle--and this house might be defended for twenty-four all the incalculable combinations of a climate hours against any force to be brought against where heat and cold struggle for mastery. it, now in this place, for the same time ; and, Read Spence, and turned over Roscoe, to in such a time, the country would have notice, find a passage I have not found. Read the and would rise, – if ever they will rise, of fourth vol. of W. Scott's second series of which there is some doubt. In the mean * Tales of my Landlord.' Dined. Read the time, I may as well read as do any thing else, Lugano Gazette. Read — I forget what. being alone. At eight went to conversazione. Found there the Countess Geltrude, Betti V. and

January 8. 1821. Monday. her husband, and others. Pretty black-eyed “ Rose, and found Count P. G. in my woman that — only nineteen same age as apartments. Sent away the servant. Told Teresa, who is prettier, though.

me that, according to the best information, “ The Count Pietro G. took me aside to the Government had not issued orders for say that the Patriots have had notice from the arrests apprehended ; that the attack in Forli (twenty miles off) that to-night the Forli had not taken place (as expected) by government and its party mean to strike a the Sanfedisti — the opponents of the Carstroke that the Cardinal here has had bonari or Liberals — and that, as yet, they orders to make several arrests immediately, are still in apprehension only. Asked me and that, in consequence, the Liberals are for some arms of a better sort, which I gave Adining, and have posted patroles in the him. Settled that, in case of a row, the streets, to sound the alarm and give notice Liberals were to assemble here (with me), to fight for it.

and that he had given the word to Vincenzo “ He asked me 'what should be done ?' G. and others of the Chiefs for that purpose. I answered, “Fight for it, rather than be He himself and father are going to the chase taken in detail ; ' and offered, if any of them in the forest ; but V. G. is to come to me, are in immediate apprehension of arrest, to and an express to be sent off to him, P. G., receive them in my house (which is defens- if any thing occurs. Concerted operations. ible), and to defend them, with my servants They are to seize — but no matter. and themselves (we have arms and ammuni- “ I advised them to attack in detail, and tion), as long as we can, - or to try to get in different parties, in different places (though them away under cloud of night. On going at the same time), so as to divide the attelhome, I offered him the pistols which I had tion of the troops, who, though few, yet about me

- but he refused, but said he being disciplined, would beat any body of would come off to me in case of accidents. people (not trained) in a regular fight

“ It wants half an hour of midnight, and unless dispersed in small parties, and disrains ; :- as Gibbet says, 'a fine night for tracted with different assaults. Offered to their enterprise - dark as hell, and blows let them assemble here if they choose. It like the devil.'. If the row don't happen is a strongish post — narrow street, connow, it must soon. I thought that their manded from within — and tenable walls. system of shooting people would soon pro

“ Dined. Tried on a new coat. Letter to duce a re-action — and now it seems coming. Murray, with corrections of Bacon's ApophI will do what I can in the way of combat, thegms and an epigram the latter mot though a little out of exercise. The cause for publication. At eight went to Teresa, is a good one.

Countess G. At nine and a half came in “ Turned over and over half a score of Il Conte P. and Count P. G. Talked of a books for the passage in question, and can't certain proclamation lately issued. Count find it. Expect to hear the drum and the R. G. had been with ** (the **), to sound musquetry momently (for they swear to re- him about the arrests. He,

is a trimine, sist, and are right,) — but I hear nothing, as and deals, at present, his cards with both yet, save the plash of the rain and the gusts hands. If he don't mind, they'll be full. of the wind intervals. Don't like to go to ** pretends (I doubt him—they don't, -we bed, because I hate to be waked, and would shall see) that there is no such order, and rather sit up for the row, if there is to be one. seems staggered by the immense exertions

“Mended the fire — have got the arms of the Neapolitans, and the fierce spirit of - and a book or two, which I shall turn the Liberals here. The truth is, that

I know little of their numbers, but cares for little but his place (which is a good think the Carbonari strong enough to beat one), and wishes to play pretty with both

parties. He has changed his mind thirty
' [Beaux Stratagem, act iv. sc. 2.]
times these last three moons, to my


[ocr errors]


« FöregåendeFortsätt »