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Canto the Third


CANTO THE THIRD.[169]

I.

HAIL, Muse! _et cetera._--We left Juan sleeping,
Pillowed upon a fair and happy breast,
And watched by eyes that never yet knew weeping,
And loved by a young heart, too deeply blest
To feel the poison through her spirit creeping,
Or know who rested there, a foe to rest,
Had soiled the current of her sinless years,
And turned her pure heart's purest blood to tears!

II.

Oh, Love! what is it in this world of ours
Which makes it fatal to be loved? Ah why
With cypress branches hast thou wreathed thy bowers,
And made thy best interpreter a sigh?
As those who dote on odours pluck the flowers,
And place them on their breast--but place to die--
Thus the frail beings we would fondly cherish
Are laid within our bosoms but to perish.

III.

In her first passion Woman loves her lover,
In all the others all she loves is Love,
Which grows a habit she can ne'er get over,
And fits her loosely--like an easy glove,[ch]
As you may find, whene'er you like to prove her:
One man alone at first her heart can move;
She then prefers him in the plural number,
Not finding that the additions much encumber.

IV.

I know not if the fault be men's or theirs;
But one thing's pretty sure; a woman planted
(Unless at once she plunge for life in prayers)--
After a decent time must be gallanted;
Although, no doubt, her first of love affairs
Is that to which her heart is wholly granted;
Yet there are some, they say, who have had _none_,
But those who have ne'er end with only _one_.[170]

V.

'T is melancholy, and a fearful sign
Of human frailty, folly, also crime,
That Love and Marriage rarely can combine,
Although they both are born in the same clime;
Marriage from Love, like vinegar from wine--
A sad, sour, sober beverage--by Time
Is sharpened from its high celestial flavour
Down to a very homely household savour.

VI.

There's something of antipathy, as 't were,
Between their present and their future state;
A kind of flattery that's hardly fair
Is used until the truth arrives too late--
Yet what can people do, except despair?
The same things change their names at such a rate;
For instance--Passion in a lover's glorious,
But in a husband is pronounced uxorious.

VII.

Men grow ashamed of being so very fond;
They sometimes also get a little tired
(But that, of course, is rare), and then despond:
The same things cannot always be admired,
Yet 't is "so nominated in the bond,"[171]
That both are tied till one shall have expired.
Sad thought! to lose the spouse that was adorning
Our days, and put one's servants into mourning.

VIII.

There's doubtless something in domestic doings
Which forms, in fact, true Love's antithesis;
Romances paint at full length people's wooings,
But only give a bust of marriages;
For no one cares for matrimonial cooings,
There's nothing wrong in a connubial kiss:
Think you, if Laura had been Petrarch's wife,
He would have written sonnets all his life?[ci]

IX.

All tragedies are finished by a death,
All comedies are ended by a marriage;
The future states of both are left to faith,
For authors fear description might disparage
The worlds to come of both, or fall beneath,
And then both worlds would punish their miscarriage;
So leaving each their priest and prayer-book ready,
They say no more of Death or of the Lady.[172]

X.

The only two that in my recollection,
Have sung of Heaven and Hell, or marriage, are
Dante[173] and Milton,[174] and of both the affection
Was hapless in their nuptials, for some bar
Of fault or temper ruined the connection
(Such things, in fact, it don't ask much to mar);
But Dante's Beatrice and Milton's Eve
Were not drawn from their spouses, you conceive.

XI.

Some persons say that Dante meant Theology
By Beatrice, and not a mistress--I,
Although my opinion may require apology,
Deem this a commentator's phantasy,
Unless indeed it was from his own knowledge he
Decided thus, and showed good reason why;
I think that Dante's more abstruse ecstatics
Meant to personify the Mathematics.[175]

XII.

Haidée and Juan were not married, but
The fault was theirs, not mine: it is not fair,
Chaste reader, then, in any way to put
The blame on me, unless you wish they were;
Then if you'd have them wedded, please to shut
The book which treats of this erroneous pair,
Before the consequences grow too awful;
'T is dangerous to read of loves unlawful.

XIII.

Yet they were happy,--happy in the illicit
Indulgence of their innocent desires;
But more imprudent grown with every visit,
Haidée forgot the island was her Sire's;
When we have what we like 't is hard to miss it,
At least in the beginning, ere one tires;
Thus she came often, not a moment losing,
Whilst her piratical papa was cruising.

XIV.

Let not his mode of raising cash seem strange,
Although he fleeced the flags of every nation,
For into a Prime Minister but change
His title, and 't is nothing but taxation;
But he, more modest, took an humbler range
Of Life, and in an honester vocation
Pursued o'er the high seas his watery journey,[cj]
And merely practised as a sea-attorney.

XV.

The good old gentleman had been detained
By winds and waves, and some important captures;
And, in the hope of more, at sea remained,
Although a squall or two had damped his raptures,
By swamping one of the prizes; he had chained
His prisoners, dividing them like chapters
In numbered lots; they all had cuffs and collars,
And averaged each from ten to a hundred dollars.

XVI.

Some he disposed of off Cape Matapan,
Among his friends the Mainots; some he sold
To his Tunis correspondents, save one man
Tossed overboard unsaleable (being old);
The rest--save here and there some richer one,
Reserved for future ransom--in the hold,
Were linked alike, as, for the common people, he
Had a large order from the Dey of Tripoli.

XVII.

The merchandise was served in the same way,
Pieced out for different marts in the Levant,
Except some certain portions of the prey,
Light classic articles of female want,
French stuffs, lace, tweezers, toothpicks, teapot, tray,[ck]
Guitars and castanets from Alicant,
All which selected from the spoil he gathers,
Robbed for his daughter by the best of fathers.

XVIII.

A monkey, a Dutch mastiff, a mackaw,[176]
Two parrots, with a Persian cat and kittens,
He chose from several animals he saw--
A terrier, too, which once had been a Briton's,
Who dying on the coast of Ithaca,
The peasants gave the poor dumb thing a pittance:
These to secure in this strong blowing weather,
He caged in one huge hamper altogether.

XIX.

Then, having settled his marine affairs,
Despatching single cruisers here and there,
His vessel having need of some repairs,
He shaped his course to where his daughter fair
Continued still her hospitable cares;
But that part of the coast being shoal and bare,
And rough with reefs which ran out many a mile,
His port lay on the other side o' the isle.

XX.

And there he went ashore without delay,
Having no custom-house nor quarantine
To ask him awkward questions on the way,
About the time and place where he had been:
He left his ship to be hove down next day,
With orders to the people to careen;
So that all hands were busy beyond measure,
In getting out goods, ballast, guns, and treasure.

XXI.

Arriving at the summit of a hill
Which overlooked the white walls of his home,
He stopped.--What singular emotions fill
Their bosoms who have been induced to roam!
With fluttering doubts if all be well or ill--
With love for many, and with fears for some;
All feelings which o'erleap the years long lost,
And bring our hearts back to their starting-post.

XXII.

The approach of home to husbands and to sires,
After long travelling by land or water,
Most naturally some small doubt inspires--
A female family's a serious matter,
(None trusts the sex more, or so much admires--
But they hate flattery, so I never flatter);
Wives in their husbands' absences grow subtler,
And daughters sometimes run off with the butler.

XXIII.

An honest gentleman at his return
May not have the good fortune of Ulysses;
Not all lone matrons for their husbands mourn,
Or show the same dislike to suitors' kisses;
The odds are that he finds a handsome urn
To his memory--and two or three young misses
Born to some friend, who holds his wife and riches--
And that _his_ Argus[177]--bites him by the breeches.

XXIV.

If single, probably his plighted Fair
Has in his absence wedded some rich miser;
But all the better, for the happy pair
May quarrel, and, the lady growing wiser,
He may resume his amatory care
As cavalier servente, or despise her;
And that his sorrow may not be a dumb one,
Writes odes on the Inconstancy of Woman.

XXV.

And oh! ye gentlemen who have already
Some chaste _liaison_ of the kind--I mean
An honest friendship with a married lady--
The only thing of this sort ever seen
To last--of all connections the most steady,
And the true Hymen, (the first's but a screen)--
Yet, for all that, keep not too long away--
I've known the absent wronged four times a day.[cl]

XXVI.

Lambro, our sea-solicitor, who had
Much less experience of dry land than Ocean,
On seeing his own chimney-smoke, felt glad;
But not knowing metaphysics, had no notion
Of the true reason of his not being sad,
Or that of any other strong emotion;
He loved his child, and would have wept the loss of her,
But knew the cause no more than a philosopher.

XXVII.

He saw his white walls shining in the sun,
His garden trees all shadowy and green;
He heard his rivulet's light bubbling run,
The distant dog-bark; and perceived between
The umbrage of the wood, so cool and dun,
The moving figures, and the sparkling sheen
Of arms (in the East all arm)--and various dyes
Of coloured garbs, as bright as butterflies.

XXVIII.

And as the spot where they appear he nears,
Surprised at these unwonted signs of idling,
He hears--alas! no music of the spheres,
But an unhallowed, earthly sound of fiddling!
A melody which made him doubt his ears,
The cause being past his guessing or unriddling;
A pipe, too, and a drum, and shortly after--
A most unoriental roar of laughter.

XXIX.

And still more nearly to the place advancing,
Descending rather quickly the declivity,
Through the waved branches o'er the greensward glancing,
'Midst other indications of festivity,
Seeing a troop of his domestics dancing
Like Dervises, who turn as on a pivot, he
Perceived it was the Pyrrhic dance[178] so martial,
To which the Levantines are very partial.

XXX.

And further on a troop of Grecian girls,[179]
The first and tallest her white kerchief waving,
Were strung together like a row of pearls,
Linked hand in hand, and dancing; each too having
Down her white neck long floating auburn curls--
(The least of which would set ten poets raving);[cm]
Their leader sang--and bounded to her song
With choral step and voice the virgin throng.

XXXI.

And here, assembled cross-legged round their trays,
Small social parties just begun to dine;
Pilaus and meats of all sorts met the gaze,
And flasks of Samian and of Chian wine,
And sherbet cooling in the porous vase;
Above them their dessert grew on its vine;--
The orange and pomegranate nodding o'er,
Dropped in their laps, scarce plucked, their mellow store.

XXXII.

A band of children, round a snow-white ram,[180]
There wreathe his venerable horns with flowers;
While peaceful as if still an unweaned lamb,
The patriarch of the flock all gently cowers
His sober head, majestically tame,
Or eats from out the palm, or playful lowers
His brow, as if in act to butt, and then
Yielding to their small hands, draws back again.

XXXIII.

Their classical profiles, and glittering dresses,
Their large black eyes, and soft seraphic cheeks,
Crimson as cleft pomegranates, their long tresses,
The gesture which enchants, the eye that speaks,
The innocence which happy childhood blesses,
Made quite a picture of these little Greeks;
So that the philosophical beholder
Sighed for their sakes--that they should e'er grow older.

XXXIV.

Afar, a dwarf buffoon stood telling tales
To a sedate grey circle of old smokers,
Of secret treasures found in hidden vales,
Of wonderful replies from Arab jokers,
Of charms to make good gold and cure bad ails,
Of rocks bewitched that open to the knockers,
Of magic ladies who, by one sole act,
Transformed their lords to beasts (but that's a fact).

XXXV.

Here was no lack of innocent diversion
For the imagination or the senses,
Song, dance, wine, music, stories from the Persian,
All pretty pastimes in which no offence is;
But Lambro saw all these things with aversion,
Perceiving in his absence such expenses,
Dreading that climax of all human ills,
The inflammation of his weekly bills.

XXXVI.

Ah! what is man? what perils still environ[181]
The happiest mortals even after dinner!
A day of gold from out an age of iron
Is all that Life allows the luckiest sinner;
Pleasure (whene'er she sings, at least) 's a Siren,
That lures, to flay alive, the young beginner;
Lambro's reception at his people's banquet
Was such as fire accords to a wet blanket.

XXXVII.

He--being a man who seldom used a word
Too much, and wishing gladly to surprise
(In general he surprised men with the sword)
His daughter--had not sent before to advise
Of his arrival, so that no one stirred;
And long he paused to re-assure his eyes,
In fact much more astonished than delighted,
To find so much good company invited.

XXXVIII.

He did not know (alas! how men will lie)
That a report (especially the Greeks)
Avouched his death (such people never die),
And put his house in mourning several weeks,--
But now their eyes and also lips were dry;
The bloom, too, had returned to Haidée's cheeks:
Her tears, too, being returned into their fount,
She now kept house upon her own account.

XXXIX.

Hence all this rice, meat, dancing, wine, and fiddling,
Which turned the isle into a place of pleasure;
The servants all were getting drunk or idling,
A life which made them happy beyond measure.
Her father's hospitality seemed middling,
Compared with what Haidée did with his treasure;
'T was wonderful how things went on improving,
While she had not one hour to spare from loving.[cn]

XL.

Perhaps you think, in stumbling on this feast,
He flew into a passion, and in fact
There was no mighty reason to be pleased;
Perhaps you prophesy some sudden act,
The whip, the rack, or dungeon at the least,
To teach his people to be more exact,
And that, proceeding at a very high rate,
He showed the royal _penchants_ of a pirate.

XLI.

You're wrong.--He was the mildest mannered man
That ever scuttled ship or cut a throat;
With such true breeding of a gentleman,
You never could divine his real thought;
No courtier could, and scarcely woman can
Gird more deceit within a petticoat;
Pity he loved adventurous life's variety,
He was so great a loss to good society.

XLII.

Advancing to the nearest dinner tray,
Tapping the shoulder of the nighest guest,
With a peculiar smile, which, by the way,
Boded no good, whatever it expressed,
He asked the meaning of this holiday;
The vinous Greek to whom he had addressed
His question, much too merry to divine
The questioner, filled up a glass of wine,

XLIII.

And without turning his facetious head,
Over his shoulder, with a Bacchant air,
Presented the o'erflowing cup, and said,
"Talking's dry work, I have no time to spare."
A second hiccuped, "Our old Master's dead,
You'd better ask our Mistress who's his heir."
"Our Mistress!" quoth a third: "Our Mistress!--pooh!--
You mean our Master--not the old, but new."

XLIV.

These rascals, being new comers, knew not whom
They thus addressed--and Lambro's visage fell--
And o'er his eye a momentary gloom
Passed, but he strove quite courteously to quell
The expression, and endeavouring to resume
His smile, requested one of them to tell
The name and quality of his new patron,
Who seemed to have turned Haidée into a matron.

XLV.

"I know not," quoth the fellow, "who or what
He is, nor whence he came--and little care;
But this I know, that this roast capon's fat,
And that good wine ne'er washed down better fare;
And if you are not satisfied with that,
Direct your questions to my neighbour there;
He'll answer all for better or for worse,
For none likes more to hear himself converse."[182]

XLVI.

I said that Lambro was a man of patience,
And certainly he showed the best of breeding,
Which scarce even France, the Paragon of nations,
E'er saw her most polite of sons exceeding;
He bore these sneers against his near relations,
His own anxiety, his heart, too, bleeding,
The insults, too, of every servile glutton,
Who all the time was eating up his mutton.

XLVII.

Now in a person used to much command--
To bid men come, and go, and come again--
To see his orders done, too, out of hand--
Whether the word was death, or but the chain--
It may seem strange to find his manners bland;
Yet such things are, which I cannot explain,
Though, doubtless, he who can command himself
Is good to govern--almost as a Guelf.

XLVIII.

Not that he was not sometimes rash or so,
But never in his real and serious mood;
Then calm, concentrated, and still, and slow,
He lay coiled like the Boa in the wood;
With him it never was a word and blow,
His angry word once o'er, he shed no blood,
But in his silence there was much to rue,
And his _one_ blow left little work for _two_.

XLIX.

He asked no further questions, and proceeded
On to the house, but by a private way,
So that the few who met him hardly heeded,
So little they expected him that day;
If love paternal in his bosom pleaded
For Haidée's sake, is more than I can say,
But certainly to one deemed dead returning,
This revel seemed a curious mode of mourning.

L.

If all the dead could now return to life,
(Which God forbid!) or some, or a great many,
For instance, if a husband or his wife[co]
(Nuptial examples are as good as any),
No doubt whate'er might be their former strife,
The present weather would be much more rainy--
Tears shed into the grave of the connection
Would share most probably its resurrection.

LI.

He entered in the house no more his home,
A thing to human feelings the most trying,
And harder for the heart to overcome,
Perhaps, than even the mental pangs of dying;
To find our hearthstone turned into a tomb,
And round its once warm precincts palely lying
The ashes of our hopes, is a deep grief,
Beyond a _single gentleman's_ belief.

LII.

He entered in the house--his home no more,
For without hearts there is no home;--and felt
The solitude of passing his own door
Without a welcome: _there_ he long had dwelt,
There his few peaceful days Time had swept o'er,
There his worn bosom and keen eye would melt
Over the innocence of that sweet child,
His only shrine of feelings undefiled.

LIII.

He was a man of a strange temperament,
Of mild demeanour though of savage mood,
Moderate in all his habits, and content
With temperance in pleasure, as in food,
Quick to perceive, and strong to bear, and meant
For something better, if not wholly good;
His Country's wrongs and his despair to save her
Had stung him from a slave to an enslaver.

LIV.

The love of power, and rapid gain of gold,
The hardness by long habitude produced,
The dangerous life in which he had grown old,
The mercy he had granted oft abused,
The sights he was accustomed to behold,
The wild seas, and wild men with whom he cruised,
Had cost his enemies a long repentance,
And made him a good friend, but bad acquaintance.

LV.

But something of the spirit of old Greece
Flashed o'er his soul a few heroic rays,
Such as lit onward to the Golden Fleece
His predecessors in the Colchian days;
'T is true he had no ardent love for peace--
Alas! his country showed no path to praise:
Hate to the world and war with every nation
He waged, in vengeance of her degradation.

LVI.

Still o'er his mind the influence of the clime
Shed its Ionian elegance, which showed
Its power unconsciously full many a time,--
A taste seen in the choice of his abode,
A love of music and of scenes sublime,
A pleasure in the gentle stream that flowed
Past him in crystal, and a joy in flowers,
Bedewed his spirit in his calmer hours.

LVII.

But whatsoe'er he had of love reposed
On that belovéd daughter; she had been
The only thing which kept his heart unclosed
Amidst the savage deeds he had done and seen,
A lonely pure affection unopposed:
There wanted but the loss of this to wean
His feelings from all milk of human kindness,
And turn him like the Cyclops mad with blindness.[cp]

LVIII.

The cubless tigress in her jungle raging
Is dreadful to the shepherd and the flock;
The Ocean when its yeasty war is waging
Is awful to the vessel near the rock;
But violent things will sooner bear assuaging,
Their fury being spent by its own shock,
Than the stern, single, deep, and wordless ire[cq]
Of a strong human heart, and in a Sire.

LIX.

It is a hard although a common case
To find our children running restive--they
In whom our brightest days we would retrace,
Our little selves re-formed in finer clay,
Just as old age is creeping on apace,
And clouds come o'er the sunset of our day,
They kindly leave us, though not quite alone,
But in good company--the gout or stone.

LX.

Yet a fine family is a fine thing
(Provided they don't come in after dinner);
'T is beautiful to see a matron bring
Her children up (if nursing them don't thin her);
Like cherubs round an altar-piece they cling
To the fire-side (a sight to touch a sinner).
A lady with her daughters or her nieces
Shine like a guinea and seven-shilling pieces.

LXI.

Old Lambro passed unseen a private gate,
And stood within his hall at eventide;
Meantime the lady and her lover sate
At wassail in their beauty and their pride:
An ivory inlaid table spread with state
Before them, and fair slaves on every side;[183]
Gems, gold, and silver, formed the service mostly,
Mother of pearl and coral the less costly.

LXII.

The dinner made about a hundred dishes;
Lamb and pistachio nuts--in short, all meats,
And saffron soups, and sweetbreads; and the fishes
Were of the finest that e'er flounced in nets,
Dressed to a Sybarite's most pampered wishes;
The beverage was various sherbets
Of raisin, orange, and pomegranate juice,
Squeezed through the rind, which makes it best for use.

LXIII.

These were ranged round, each in its crystal ewer,
And fruits, and date-bread loaves closed the repast,
And Mocha's berry, from Arabia pure,
In small fine China cups, came in at last;
Gold cups of filigree, made to secure
The hand from burning, underneath them placed;
Cloves, cinnamon, and saffron too were boiled
Up with the coffee, which (I think) they spoiled.

LXIV.

The hangings of the room were tapestry, made
Of velvet panels, each of different hue,
And thick with damask flowers of silk inlaid;
And round them ran a yellow border too;
The upper border, richly wrought, displayed,
Embroidered delicately o'er with blue,
Soft Persian sentences, in lilac letters,
From poets, or the moralists their betters.

LXV.

These Oriental writings on the wall,
Quite common in those countries, are a kind
Of monitors adapted to recall,
Like skulls at Memphian banquets, to the mind,
The words which shook Belshazzar in his hall,
And took his kingdom from him: You will find,
Though sages may pour out their wisdom's treasure,
There is no sterner moralist than Pleasure.

LXVI.

A Beauty at the season's close grown hectic,
A Genius who has drunk himself to death,
A Rake turned methodistic, or Eclectic--[184]
(For that's the name they like to pray beneath)--[cr]
But most, an Alderman struck apoplectic,
Are things that really take away the breath,--
And show that late hours, wine, and love are able
To do not much less damage than the table.

LXVII.

Haidée and Juan carpeted their feet
On crimson satin, bordered with pale blue;
Their sofa occupied three parts complete
Of the apartment--and appeared quite new;
The velvet cushions (for a throne more meet)
Were scarlet, from whose glowing centre grew
A sun embossed in gold, whose rays of tissue,
Meridian-like, were seen all light to issue.[cs]

LXVIII.

Crystal and marble, plate and porcelain,
Had done their work of splendour; Indian mats
And Persian carpets, which the heart bled to stain,
Over the floors were spread; gazelles and cats,
And dwarfs and blacks, and such like things, that gain
Their bread as ministers and favourites (that's
To say, by degradation) mingled there
As plentiful as in a court, or fair.

LXIX.

There was no want of lofty mirrors, and
The tables, most of ebony inlaid
With mother of pearl or ivory, stood at hand,
Or were of tortoise-shell or rare woods made,
Fretted with gold or silver:--by command
The greater part of these were ready spread
With viands and sherbets in ice--and wine--
Kept for all comers at all hours to dine.

LXX.

Of all the dresses I select Haidée's:
She wore two jelicks--one was of pale yellow;
Of azure, pink, and white was her chemise--
'Neath which her breast heaved like a little billow:
With buttons formed of pearls as large as peas,
All gold and crimson shone her jelick's fellow,
And the striped white gauze baracan that bound her,
Like fleecy clouds about the moon, flowed round her.

LXXI.

One large gold bracelet clasped each lovely arm,
Lockless--so pliable from the pure gold
That the hand stretched and shut it without harm,
The limb which it adorned its only mould;
So beautiful--its very shape would charm,
And clinging, as if loath to lose its hold,
The purest ore enclosed the whitest skin
That e'er by precious metal was held in.[185]

LXXII.

Around, as Princess of her father's land,
A like gold bar above her instep rolled[186]
Announced her rank; twelve rings were on her hand;
Her hair was starred with gems; her veil's fine fold
Below her breast was fastened with a band
Of lavish pearls, whose worth could scarce be told;
Her orange silk full Turkish trousers furled
About the prettiest ankle in the world.

LXXIII.

Her hair's long auburn waves down to her heel
Flowed like an Alpine torrent which the sun
Dyes with his morning light,--and would conceal
Her person[187] if allowed at large to run,
And still they seemed resentfully to feel
The silken fillet's curb, and sought to shun
Their bonds whene'er some Zephyr caught began
To offer his young pinion as her fan.

LXXIV.

Round her she made an atmosphere of life,[188]
The very air seemed lighter from her eyes,
They were so soft and beautiful, and rife
With all we can imagine of the skies,
And pure as Psyche ere she grew a wife--
Too pure even for the purest human ties;
Her overpowering presence made you feel
It would not be idolatry to kneel.[189]

LXXV.

Her eyelashes, though dark as night, were tinged
(It is the country's custom, but in vain),
For those large black eyes were so blackly fringed,
The glossy rebels mocked the jetty stain,
And in their native beauty stood avenged:
Her nails were touched with henna; but, again,
The power of Art was turned to nothing, for
They could not look more rosy than before.

LXXVI.

The henna should be deeply dyed to make
The skin relieved appear more fairly fair;
She had no need of this, day ne'er will break
On mountain tops more heavenly white than her:
The eye might doubt if it were well awake,
She was so like a vision; I might err,
But Shakespeare also says, 't is very silly
"To gild refinéd gold, or paint the lily."[190]

LXXVII.

Juan had on a shawl of black and gold,
But a white baracan, and so transparent
The sparkling gems beneath you might behold,
Like small stars through the milky way apparent;
His turban, furled in many a graceful fold,
An emerald aigrette, with Haidée's hair in 't,
Surmounted as its clasp--a glowing crescent,
Whose rays shone ever trembling, but incessant.

LXXVIII.

And now they were diverted by their suite,
Dwarfs, dancing girls, black eunuchs, and a poet,
Which made their new establishment complete;
The last was of great fame, and liked to show it;
His verses rarely wanted their due feet--
And for his theme--he seldom sung below it,
He being paid to satirise or flatter,
As the Psalm says, "inditing a good matter."

LXXIX.

He praised the present, and abused the past,
Reversing the good custom of old days,
An Eastern anti-jacobin at last
He turned, preferring pudding to _no_ praise--
For some few years his lot had been o'ercast
By his seeming independent in his lays,
But now he sung the Sultan and the Pacha--
With truth like Southey, and with verse[191] like Crashaw.[ct]

LXXX.

He was a man who had seen many changes,
And always changed as true as any needle;
His Polar Star being one which rather ranges,
And not the fixed--he knew the way to wheedle:
So vile he 'scaped the doom which oft avenges;
And being fluent (save indeed when fee'd ill),
He lied with such a fervour of intention--
There was no doubt he earned his laureate pension.

LXXXI.

But _he_ had genius,--when a turncoat has it,
The _Vates irritabilis_[192] takes care
That without notice few full moons shall pass it;
Even good men like to make the public stare:--
But to my subject--let me see--what was it?--
Oh!--the third canto--and the pretty pair--
Their loves, and feasts, and house, and dress, and mode
Of living in their insular abode.

LXXXII.

Their poet, a sad trimmer, but, no less,[cu]
In company a very pleasant fellow,
Had been the favourite of full many a mess
Of men, and made them speeches when half mellow;[cv]
And though his meaning they could rarely guess,
Yet still they deigned to hiccup or to bellow
The glorious meed of popular applause,
Of which the first ne'er knows the second cause.[cw]

LXXXIII.

But now being lifted into high society,
And having picked up several odds and ends
Of free thoughts in his travels for variety,
He deemed, being in a lone isle, among friends,
That, without any danger of a riot, he
Might for long lying make himself amends;
And, singing as he sung in his warm youth,
Agree to a short armistice with Truth.

LXXXIV.

He had travelled 'mongst the Arabs, Turks, and Franks,
And knew the self-loves of the different nations;
And having lived with people of all ranks,
Had something ready upon most occasions--
Which got him a few presents and some thanks.
He varied with some skill his adulations;
To "do at Rome as Romans do,"[193] a piece
Of conduct was which _he_ observed in Greece.

LXXXV.

Thus, usually, when _he_ was asked to sing,
He gave the different nations something national;
'T was all the same to him--"God save the King,"
Or "Ça ira," according to the fashion all:
His Muse made increment of anything,
From the high lyric down to the low rational;[cx][194]
If Pindar sang horse-races, what should hinder
Himself from being as pliable as Pindar?

LXXXVI.

In France, for instance, he would write a chanson;
In England a six canto quarto tale;
In Spain he'd make a ballad or romance on
The last war--much the same in Portugal;
In Germany, the Pegasus he'd prance on
Would be old Goethe's--(see what says De Staël);[195]
In Italy he'd ape the "Trecentisti;"
In Greece, he'd sing some sort of hymn like this t' ye:[196]

1.

The Isles of Greece, the Isles of Greece!
Where burning Sappho loved and sung,
Where grew the arts of War and Peace,
Where Delos rose, and Phoebus sprung!
Eternal summer gilds them yet,
But all, except their Sun, is set.

2.

The Scian and the Teian muse,
The Hero's harp, the Lover's lute,
Have found the fame your shores refuse:
Their place of birth alone is mute
To sounds which echo further west
Than your Sires' "Islands of the Blest."[197]

3.

The mountains look on Marathon--[cy]
And Marathon looks on the sea;
And musing there an hour alone,
I dreamed that Greece might still be free;
For standing on the Persians' grave,
I could not deem myself a slave.

4.[198]

A King sate on the rocky brow
Which looks o'er sea-born Salamis;
And ships, by thousands, lay below,
And men in nations;--all were his!
He counted them at break of day--
And, when the Sun set, where were they?

5.

And where are they? and where art thou,
My Country? On thy voiceless shore
The heroic lay is tuneless now--
The heroic bosom beats no more![cz]
And must thy Lyre, so long divine,
Degenerate into hands like mine?

6.

'T is something, in the dearth of Fame,
Though linked among a fettered race,
To feel at least a patriot's shame,
Even as I sing, suffuse my face;
For what is left the poet here?
For Greeks a blush--for Greece a tear.

7.

Must _we_ but weep o'er days more blest?
Must _we_ but blush?--Our fathers bled.
Earth! render back from out thy breast
A remnant of our Spartan dead!
Of the three hundred grant but three,
To make a new Thermopylæ!

8.

What, silent still? and silent all?
Ah! no;--the voices of the dead
Sound like a distant torrent's fall,
And answer, "Let one living head,
But one arise,--we come, we come!"
'T is but the living who are dumb.

9.

In vain--in vain: strike other chords;
Fill high the cup with Samian wine!
Leave battles to the Turkish hordes,
And shed the blood of Scio's vine!
Hark! rising to the ignoble call--
How answers each bold Bacchanal!

10.

You have the Pyrrhic dance as yet,[199]
Where is the Pyrrhic phalanx gone?
Of two such lessons, why forget
The nobler and the manlier one?
You have the letters Cadmus gave--
Think ye he meant them for a slave?

11.

Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
We will not think of themes like these!
It made Anacreon's song divine:
He served--but served Polycrates--[200]
A Tyrant; but our masters then
Were still, at least, our countrymen.

12.

The Tyrant of the Chersonese
Was Freedom's best and bravest friend;
_That_ tyrant was Miltiades!
Oh! that the present hour would lend
Another despot of the kind!
Such chains as his were sure to bind.

13.

Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
On Suli's rock, and Parga's shore,
Exists the remnant of a line
Such as the Doric mothers bore;
And there, perhaps, some seed is sown,
The Heracleidan blood might own.[da]

14.

Trust not for freedom to the Franks--[201]
They have a king who buys and sells;
In native swords, and native ranks,
The only hope of courage dwells;
But Turkish force, and Latin fraud,
Would break your shield, however broad.

15.

Fill high the bowl with Samian wine!
Our virgins dance beneath the shade--
I see their glorious black eyes shine;
But gazing on each glowing maid,
My own the burning tear-drop laves,
To think such breasts must suckle slaves.

16.

Place me on Sunium's marbled steep,[202]
Where nothing, save the waves and I,
May hear our mutual murmurs sweep;
There, swan-like, let me sing and die:
A land of slaves shall ne'er be mine--
Dash down yon cup of Samian wine!

LXXXVII.

Thus sung, or would, or could, or should have sung,
The modern Greek, in tolerable verse;
If not like Orpheus quite, when Greece was young,
Yet in these times he might have done much worse:
His strain displayed some feeling--right or wrong;
And feeling,[203] in a poet, is the source
Of others' feeling; but they are such liars,
And take all colours--like the hands of dyers.

LXXXVIII.

But words are things,[204] and a small drop of ink,
Falling like dew, upon a thought, produces
That which makes thousands, perhaps millions, think;
'T is strange, the shortest letter which man uses
Instead of speech, may form a lasting link
Of ages; to what straits old Time reduces
Frail man, when paper--even a rag like this,
Survives himself, his tomb, and all that's his!

LXXXIX.

And when his bones are dust, his grave a blank,
His station, generation, even his nation,
Become a thing, or nothing, save to rank
In chronological commemoration,
Some dull MS. Oblivion long has sank,
Or graven stone found in a barrack's station
In digging the foundation of a closet,[db]
May turn his name up, as a rare deposit.

XC.

And Glory long has made the sages smile;
'T is something, nothing, words, illusion, wind--
Depending more upon the historian's style
Than on the name a person leaves behind:
Troy owes to Homer what whist owes to Hoyle:[205]
The present century was growing blind
To the great Marlborough's skill in giving knocks,
Until his late Life by Archdeacon Coxe.[206]

XCI.

Milton's the Prince of poets--so we say;
A little heavy, but no less divine:
An independent being in his day--
Learned, pious, temperate in love and wine;
But, his life falling into Johnson's way,
We're told this great High Priest of all the Nine
Was whipped at college--a harsh sire--odd spouse,
For the first Mrs. Milton left his house.[207]

XCII.

All these are, _certes_, entertaining facts,
Like Shakespeare's stealing deer, Lord Bacon's bribes;
Like Titus' youth, and Cæsar's earliest acts;[208]
Like Burns (whom Doctor Currie well describes);[209]
Like Cromwell's pranks;[210]--but although Truth exacts
These amiable descriptions from the scribes,
As most essential to their Hero's story,
They do not much contribute to his glory.

XCIII.

All are not moralists, like Southey, when
He prated to the world of "Pantisocracy;"[211]
Or Wordsworth unexcised,[212] unhired, who then
Seasoned his pedlar poems with Democracy;[dc]
Or Coleridge[213] long before his flighty pen
Let to the Morning Post its aristocracy;[dd]
When he and Southey, following the same path,
Espoused two partners (milliners of Bath).[214]

XCIV.

Such names at present cut a convict figure,
The very Botany Bay in moral geography;
Their loyal treason, renegado rigour,
Are good manure for their more bare biography;
Wordsworth's last quarto, by the way, is bigger
Than any since the birthday of typography;
A drowsy, frowzy poem, called the "Excursion,"
Writ in a manner which is my aversion.

XCV.

He there builds up a formidable dyke
Between his own and others' intellect;
But Wordsworth's poem, and his followers, like
Joanna Southcote's Shiloh[215] and her sect,
Are things which in this century don't strike
The public mind,--so few are the elect;
And the new births of both their stale Virginities
Have proved but Dropsies, taken for Divinities.

XCVI.

But let me to my story: I must own,
If I have any fault, it is digression,
Leaving my people to proceed alone,
While I soliloquize beyond expression:
But these are my addresses from the throne,
Which put off business to the ensuing session:
Forgetting each omission is a loss to
The world, not quite so great as Ariosto.

XCVII.

I know that what our neighbours call _"longueurs,"_
(We've not so good a _word_, but have the _thing_,
In that complete perfection which insures
An epic from Bob Southey every spring--)
Form not the true temptation which allures
The reader; but 't would not be hard to bring
Some fine examples of the _Epopée_,
To prove its grand ingredient is _Ennui_.[216]

XCVIII.

We learn from Horace, "Homer sometimes sleeps;"[217]
We feel without him,--Wordsworth sometimes wakes,--
To show with what complacency he creeps,
With his dear "_Waggoners_," around his lakes.[218]
He wishes for "a boat" to sail the deeps--
Of Ocean?--No, of air; and then he makes
Another outcry for "a little boat,"
And drivels seas to set it well afloat.[219]

XCIX.

If he must fain sweep o'er the ethereal plain,
And Pegasus runs restive in his "Waggon,"
Could he not beg the loan of Charles's Wain?
Or pray Medea for a single dragon?[220]
Or if, too classic for his vulgar brain,
He feared his neck to venture such a nag on,
And he must needs mount nearer to the moon,
Could not the blockhead ask for a balloon?

C.

"Pedlars," and "Boats," and "Waggons!" Oh! ye shades
Of Pope and Dryden, are we come to this?
That trash of such sort not alone evades
Contempt, but from the bathos' vast abyss
Floats scumlike uppermost, and these Jack Cades
Of sense and song above your graves may hiss--
The "little boatman" and his _Peter Bell_
Can sneer at him who drew "Achitophel!"[221]

CI.

T' our tale.--The feast was over, the slaves gone,
The dwarfs and dancing girls had all retired;
The Arab lore and Poet's song were done,
And every sound of revelry expired;
The lady and her lover, left alone,
The rosy flood of Twilight's sky admired;--
Ave Maria! o'er the earth and sea,
That heavenliest hour of Heaven is worthiest thee!

CII.

Ave Maria! blesséd be the hour!
The time, the clime, the spot, where I so oft
Have felt that moment in its fullest power
Sink o'er the earth--so beautiful and soft--
While swung the deep bell in the distant tower,[de]
Or the faint dying day-hymn stole aloft,
And not a breath crept through the rosy air,
And yet the forest leaves seemed stirred with prayer.

CIII.

Ave Maria! 't is the hour of prayer!
Ave Maria! 't is the hour of Love!
Ave Maria! may our spirits dare
Look up to thine and to thy Son's above!
Ave Maria! oh that face so fair!
Those downcast eyes beneath the Almighty Dove--
What though 't is but a pictured image?--strike--
That painting is no idol,--'t is too like.

CIV.

Some kinder casuists are pleased to say,
In nameless print[df]--that I have no devotion;
But set those persons down with me to pray,
And you shall see who has the properest notion
Of getting into Heaven the shortest way;
My altars are the mountains and the Ocean,
Earth--air--stars,[222]--all that springs from the great Whole,
Who hath produced, and will receive the Soul.

CV.

Sweet Hour of Twilight!--in the solitude
Of the pine forest, and the silent shore
Which bounds Ravenna's immemorial wood,
Rooted where once the Adrian wave flowed o'er,
To where the last Cæsarean fortress stood,[223]
Evergreen forest! which Boccaccio's lore
And Dryden's lay made haunted ground to me,
How have I loved the twilight hour and thee![224]

CVI.

The shrill cicalas, people of the pine,
Making their summer lives one ceaseless song,
Were the sole echoes, save my steed's and mine,
And Vesper bell's that rose the boughs along;
The spectre huntsman of Onesti's line,
His hell-dogs, and their chase, and the fair throng
Which learned from this example not to fly
From a true lover,--shadowed my mind's eye.[225]

CVII.

Oh, Hesperus! thou bringest all good things--[226]
Home to the weary, to the hungry cheer,
To the young bird the parent's brooding wings,
The welcome stall to the o'erlaboured steer;
Whate'er of peace about our hearthstone clings,
Whate'er our household gods protect of dear,
Are gathered round us by thy look of rest;
Thou bring'st the child, too, to the mother's breast.

CVIII.

Soft Hour! which wakes the wish and melts the heart
Of those who sail the seas, on the first day
When they from their sweet friends are torn apart;
Or fills with love the pilgrim on his way
As the far bell of Vesper makes him start,
Seeming to weep the dying day's decay;[227]
Is this a fancy which our reason scorns?
Ah! surely Nothing dies but Something mourns!

CIX.

When Nero perished by the justest doom
Which ever the Destroyer yet destroyed,
Amidst the roar of liberated Rome,
Of nations freed, and the world overjoyed,
Some hands unseen strewed flowers upon his tomb:[228]
Perhaps the weakness of a heart not void
Of feeling for some kindness done, when Power
Had left the wretch an uncorrupted hour.

CX.

But I'm digressing; what on earth has Nero,
Or any such like sovereign buffoons,[dg]
To do with the transactions of my hero,
More than such madmen's fellow man--the moon's?
Sure my invention must be down at zero,
And I grown one of many "Wooden Spoons"
Of verse, (the name with which we Cantabs please
To dub the last of honours in degrees).

CXI.

I feel this tediousness will never do--
T' is being _too_ epic, and I must cut down
(In copying) this long canto into two;
They'll never find it out, unless I own
The fact, excepting some experienced few;
And then as an improvement 't will be shown:
I'll prove that such the opinion of the critic is
From Aristotle _passim_.--See [Greek: POIAETIKAES].[229]

FOOTNOTES:

[169] [November 30, 1819. Copied in 1820 (MS.D.). Moore (_Life_, 421)
says that Byron was at work on the third canto when he stayed with him
at Venice, in October, 1819. "One day, before dinner, [he] read me two
or three hundred lines of it; beginning with the stanzas "Oh
Wellington," etc., which, at the time, formed the opening of the third
canto, but were afterwards reserved for the commencement of the ninth."
The third canto, as it now stands, was completed by November 8, 1819;
see _Letters_, 1900, iv. 375. The date on the MS. may refer to the first
fair copy.]

{144}[ch] _And fits her like a stocking or a glove_.--[MS. D.]

[170] ["On peut trouver des femmes qui n'ont jamais eu de galanterie,
mais il est rare d'en trouver qui n'en aient jamais eu
qu'une."--_Réflexions_ ... du Duc de la Rochefoucauld, No. lxxiii.

Byron prefixed the maxim as a motto to his "Ode to a Lady whose Lover
was killed by a Ball, which at the same time shivered a Portrait next
his Heart."--_Poetical Works_, 1901, iv. 552.]

{145}[171] [_Merchant of Venice_, act iv. sc. 1, line 254.]

[ci]
_Had Petrarch's passion led to Petrarch's wedding,_
_How many sonnets had ensued the bedding?_--[MS.]

[172] [The Ballad of "Death and the Lady" was printed in a small volume,
entitled _A Guide to Heaven_, 1736, 12mo. It is mentioned in _The Vicar
of Wakefield_ (chap. xvii.), _Works of Oliver Goldsmith_, 1854, i. 369.
See _Old English Popular Music_, by William Chappell, F.S.A., 1893, ii.
170, 171.]

{146}[173] [See _The Prophecy of Dante,_ Canto I. lines 172-174,
_Poetical Works,_ 1901, iv. 253, note 1.]

[174] Milton's first wife ran away from him within the first month. If
she had not, what would John Milton have done?

[Mary Powell did not "run away," but at the end of the honeymoon
obtained her husband's consent to visit her family at Shotover, "upon a
promise of returning at Michaelmas." "And in the mean while his studies
went on very vigorously; and his chief diversion, after the business of
the day, was now and then in an evening to visit the Lady Margaret
Lee.... This lady, being a woman of excellent wit and understanding, had
a particular honour for our author, and took great delight in his
conversation; as likewise did her husband, Captain Hobson." See, too,
his sonnet "To the Lady Margaret Ley."--_The Life of Milton_ (by Thomas
Newton, D.D.), _Paradise Regained,_ ed. (Baskerville), 1758, pp. xvii.,
xviii.]

[175] ["Yesterday a very pretty letter from Annabella.... She is a
poetess--a mathematician--a metaphysician."--_Journal_ November 30,
1813, _Letters_, 1898, ii. 357.]

{147}[cj]
_Displayed much more of nerve, perhaps, of wit,_
_Than any of the parodies of Pitt_.--[MS.]

{148}[ck] _---- toothpicks, a bidet_.--[MS. Alternative reading.]

"_Dr. Murray--As you are squeamish you may put 'teapot, tray,' in case
the other piece of feminine furniture frightens you.--B._"

[176] [For Byron's menagerie, see _Werner_, act i. sc. 1, line 216,
_Poetical Works_, 1902, v. 348, note 1.]

{149}[177] ["But as for canine recollections ... I had one (half a
_wolf_ by the she-side) that doted on me at ten years old, and very
nearly ate me at twenty. When I thought he was going to enact Argus, he
bit away the backside of my breeches, and never would consent to any
kind of recognition, in despite of all kinds of bones which I offered
him."--Letter to Moore, January 19, 1815, _Letters_, 1899, iii. 171,
172. Compare, too, _Childe Harold_, Canto I. Song, stanza ix., _Poetical
Works_, 1899, ii. 30.]

{150}[cl]
_Yet for all that don't stay away too long,_
_A sofa, like a bed, may come by wrong_.--[MS.]
_I've known the friend betrayed_----.--[MS. D.]

{151}[178] [The Pyrrhic war-dance represented "by rapid movements of the
body, the way in which missiles and blows from weapons were avoided, and
also the mode in which the enemy was attacked" (_Dict. of Ant._).
Dodwell (_Tour through Greece_, 1819, ii. 21, 22) observes that in
Thessaly and Macedon dances are performed at the present day by men
armed with their musket and sword. See, too, Hobhouse's description
(_Travels in Albania_, 1858, i. 166, 167) of the Albanian war-dance at
Loutráki.]

[179] ["Their manner of dancing is certainly the same that Diana is
_sung_ to have danced on the banks of Eurotas. The great lady still
leads the dance, and is followed by a troop of young girls, who imitate
her steps, and, if she sings, make up the chorus. The tunes are
extremely gay and lively, yet with something in them wonderfully soft.
The steps are varied according to the pleasure of her that leads the
dance, but always in exact time, and infinitely more agreeable than any
of our dances."--Lady M.W. Montagu to Pope, April 1, O.S., 1817,
_Letters, etc._, 1816, p. 138. The "kerchief-waving" dance is the
_Romaika_. See _The Waltz_, line 125, _Poetical Works_, 1898, i. 492,
note 1. See, too, _Voyage Pittoresque_ ... by the Comte de
Choiseul-Gouffier, 1782, vol. i. Planche 33.]

[cm] _That would have set Tom Moore, though married, raving._--[MS.]

{152}[180] ["Upon the whole, I think the part of _Don Juan_ in which
Lambro's return to his home, and Lambro himself are described, is the
best, that is, the most individual, thing in all I know of Lord B.'s
works. The festal abandonment puts one in mind of Nicholas Poussin's
pictures."--_Table Talk_ of S.T. Coleridge, June 7, 1824.]

{153}[181] [Compare _Hudibras_, Part I. canto iii. lines 1, 2--

"Ay me! what perils do environ
The man that meddles with cold iron!"

Byron's friend, C.S. Matthews, shouted these lines, _con intenzione_,
under the windows of a Cambridge tradesman named Hiron, who had been
instrumental in the expulsion from the University of Sir Henry Smyth, a
riotous undergraduate. (See letter to Murray, October 19, 1820.)]

{154}[cn]
_All had been open, heart, and open house,_
_Ever since Juan served her for a spouse._--[MS.]

{155}[182]


["Rispose allor Margutte: a dirtel tosto,
Io non credo più al nero ch' all' azzurro;
Ma nel cappone, o lesso, o vuogli arrosto,
E credo alcuna volta anche nel burro;
Nella cervogia, e quando io n' ho nel mosto,
E molto più nell' aspro che il mangurro;
Ma sopra tutto nel buon vino ho fede,
E credo che sia salvo chi gli crede."

Pulci, _Morgante Maggiore_, Canto XVIII. stanza cxv.]

{157}[co] _For instance, if a first or second wife._--[MS.]

{159}[cp]
_And send him forth like Samson strong in blindness_.--[MS. D.]
_And make him Samson-like--more fierce with blindness_.--[MS. M.]

[cq]
_Not so the single, deep, and wordless ire,_
_Of a strong human heart_--.--[MS.]

{160}[183] ["Almost all _Don Juan_ is _real_ life, either my own, or
from people I knew. By the way, much of the description of the
_furniture_, in Canto Third, is taken from _Tully's Tripoli_ (pray _note
this_), and the rest from my own observation. Remember, I never meant to
conceal this at all, and have only not stated it, because _Don Juan_ had
no preface, nor name to it."--Letter to Murray, August 23, 1821,
_Letters_, 1901, v. 346.

The first edition of _"Tully's Tripoli"_ is entitled _Narrative of a Ten
Years' Residence in Tripoli In Africa: From the original correspondence
in the possession of the Family of the late Richard Tully, Esq., the
British Consul_, 1816, 410. The book is in the form of letters (so says
the _Preface_) written by the Consul's sister. The description of
Haidée's _dress_ is taken from the account of a visit to Lilla Kebbiera,
the wife of the Bashaw (p. 30); the description of the furniture and
refreshments from the account of a visit to "Lilla Amnani," Hadgi
Abderrahmam's Greek wife (pp. 132-137). It is evident that the "Chiel"
who took _these_ "notes" was the Consul's _sister_, not the Consul:
"Lilla Aisha, the Bey's wife, is thought to be very sensible, though
rather haughty. Her apartments were grand, and herself superbly habited.
Her chemise was covered with gold embroidery at the neck; over it she
wore a gold and silver tissue _jileck_, or jacket without sleeves, and
over that another of purple velvet richly laced with gold, with coral
and pearl buttons set quite close together down the front; it had short
sleeves finished with a gold band not far below the shoulder, and
discovered a wide loose chemise of transparent gauze, with gold, silver,
and ribband strips. She wore round her ancles ... a sort of fetter made
of a thick bar of gold so fine that they bound it round the leg with one
hand; it is an inch and a half wide, and as much in thickness: each of
these weighs four pounds. Just above this a band three inches wide of
gold thread finished the ends of a pair of trousers made of pale yellow
and white silk."

Page 132. "[Lilla] rose to take coffee, which was served in very small
china cups, placed in silver filigree cups; and gold filigree cups were
put under those presented to the married ladies. They had introduced
cloves, cinnamon, and saffron into the coffee, which was abundantly
sweetened; but this mixture was very soon changed, and replaced by
excellent simple coffee for the European ladies...."

Page 133. "The Greek then shewed us the gala furniture of her own
room.... The hangings of the room were of tapestry, made in pannels of
different coloured velvets, thickly inlaid with flowers of silk damask;
a yellow border, of about a foot in depth, finished the tapestry at top
and bottom, the upper border being embroidered with Moorish sentences
from the Koran in lilac letters. The carpet was of crimson satin, with a
deep border of pale blue quilted; this is laid over Indian mats and
other carpets. In the best part of the room the sofa is placed, which
occupies three sides in an alcove, the floor of which is raised. The
sofa and the cushions that lay around were of crimson velvet, the centre
cushions were embroidered with a sun in gold of highly embossed work,
the rest were of gold and silver tissue. The curtains of the alcove were
made to match those before the bed. A number of looking-glasses, and a
profusion of fine china and chrystal completed the ornaments and
furniture of the room, in which were neither tables nor chairs. A small
table, about six inches high, is brought in when refreshments are
served; it is of ebony, inlaid with mother-of-pearl, tortoiseshell,
ivory, gold and silver, of choice woods, or of plain mahogany, according
to the circumstances of the proprietor."

Page 136. "On the tables were placed all sorts of refreshments, and
thirty or forty dishes of meat and poultry, dressed different ways;
there were no knives nor forks, and only a few spoons of gold, silver,
ivory, or coral...."

Page 137. "The beverage was various sherbets, some composed of the juice
of boiled raisins, very sweet; some of the juice of pomegranates
squeezed through the rind; and others of the pure juice of oranges.
These sherbets were copiously supplied in high glass ewers, placed in
great numbers on the ground.... After the dishes of meat were removed, a
dessert of Arabian fruits, confectionaries, and sweetmeats was served;
among the latter was the date-bread. This sweetmeat is made in
perfection only by the blacks at Fezzan, of the ripe date of the
country.... They make it in the shape of loaves, weighing from twenty to
thirty pounds; the stones of the fruit are taken out, and the dates
simply pressed together with great weights; thus preserved, it keeps
perfectly good for a year."]

{162}[184] ["He writes like a man who has that clear perception of the
truth of things which is the result of the guilty knowledge of good and
evil; and who, by the light of that knowledge, has deliberately
preferred the evil with a proud malignity of purpose, which would seem
to leave little for the last consummating change to accomplish. When he
calculates that the reader is on the verge of pitying him, he takes care
to throw him back the defiance of laughter, as if to let him know that
all the Poet's pathos is but the sentimentalism of the drunkard between
his cups, or the relenting softness of the courtesan, who the next
moment resumes the bad boldness of her degraded character. With such a
man, who would wish either to laugh or to weep?"--_Eclectic Review_
(Lord Byron's _Mazeppa_), August, 1819, vol. xii. p. 150.]

[cr] _For that's the name they like to cant beneath._--[MS.]

{163}[cs] _The upholsterer's_ "fiat lux" _had bade to issue._--[MS.]

{164}[185] This dress is Moorish, and the bracelets and bar are worn in
the manner described. The reader will perceive hereafter, that as the
mother of Haidée was of Fez, her daughter wore the garb of the country.
[_Vide ante, p. 160, note 1._]

[186] The bar of gold above the instep is a mark of sovereign rank in
the women of the families of the Deys, and is worn as such by their
female relatives. [_Vide ibid._]

[187] This is no exaggeration: there were four women whom I remember to
have seen, who possessed their hair in this profusion; of these, three
were English, the other was a Levantine. Their hair was of that length
and quantity, that, when let down, it almost entirely shaded the person,
so as nearly to render dress a superfluity. Of these, only one had dark
hair; the Oriental's had, perhaps, the lightest colour of the four.

[188] [Compare--

"Yet there was round thee such a dawn
Of Light ne'er seen before,
As Fancy never could have drawn,
And never can restore."

Song by Rev. C. Wolfe (1791-1823).

Compare, too--

"She was a form of Life and Light
That, seen, became a part of sight."

_The Giaour_, lines 1127, 1128.]

{165}[189]

[" ... but Psyche owns no lord--
She walks a goddess from above;
All saw, all praised her, all adored,
But no one ever dared to love."

_The Golden Ass of Apuleius; in English verse, entitled Cupid and
Psyche_, by Hudson Gurney, 1799.]

[190] [_King John_, act iv. sc. 2, line 11.]

{166}[191] ["Richard Crashaw (died 1650), the friend of Cowley, was
honoured," says Warton, "with the praise of Pope; who both read his
poems and borrowed from them. After he was ejected from his Fellowship
at Peterhouse for denying the covenant, he turned Roman Catholic, and
died canon of the church at Loretto." Cowley sang his _In Memoriam_--

"_Angels_ (they say) brought the famed _Chappel_ there;
And bore the sacred Load in Triumph through the air:--
'T is surer much they brought thee there, and _They_,
And _Thou_, their charge, went _singing_ all the way."

_The Works, etc._, 1668, pp. 29, 30.]

[ct] _Believed like Southey--and perused like Crashaw._--[MS.]

{167}[192] [The second chapter of Coleridge's _Biographia Literaria_ is
on the "supposed irritability of men of genius." Ed. 1847, i. 29.]

[cu] _Their poet a sad Southey_.--[MS. D.]

[cv] _Of rogues_--.--[MS. D.]

[cw] _Of which the causers never know the cause_.--[MS. D.]

{168}[193] [_Vide St. August. Epist._, xxxvi., cap. xiv., "Ille
[Ambrosius, Mediolanensis Episcopus] adjecit; Quando hic sum, non jejuno
sabbato; quando Romae sum, jejuno sabbato."--Migne's _Patrologiæ
Cursus_, 1845, xxxiii. 151.]

[cx] _From the high lyrical to the low rational_.--[MS.D.]

[194] [The allusion is to Coleridge's eulogy of Southey in the
Biographia Literaria (ed. 1847, i. 61): "In poetry he has attempted
almost every species of composition known before, and he has added new
ones; and if we except the very highest lyric ... he has attempted every
species successfully." But the satire, primarily and ostensibly aimed at
Southey, now and again glances at Southey's eulogist.]

[195] ["Goethe pourroit représenter la littérature allemande toute
entière."--_De L'Allemagne_, par Mme. la Baronne de Staël-Holstein,
1818, i. 227.]

[196] [The poet is not "a sad Southey," but is sketched from memory.
"Lord Byron," writes Finlay (_History of Greece_, vi. 335, note), "used
to describe an evening passed in the company of Londos [a Morean
landowner, who took part in the first and second Greek Civil Wars], at
Vostitza (in 1809), when both were young men, with a spirit that
rendered the scene worthy of a place in _Don Juan_. After supper Londos,
who had the face and figure of a chimpanzee, sprang upon a table, ...
and commenced singing through his nose Rhiga's Hymn to Liberty. A new
cadi, passing near the house, inquired the cause of the discordant
hubbub. A native Mussulman replied, 'It is only the young primate
Londos, who is drunk, and is singing hymns to the new panaghia of the
Greeks, whom they call Eleutheria.'" (See letter to Andreas Londos
(undated), _Letters_, 1901, vi. 320, note 1.)]

{169}[197] The [Greek: Maka/rôn nêsoi] [Hesiod, _Works and Days_, line
169] of the Greek poets were supposed to have been the Cape de Verd
Islands, or the Canaries.

[cy]
_Euboea looks on Marathon,
And Marathon looks on the sea, etc._--[MS.]

[198] [See Æschylus, _Persæ_, 463, sq.; and Herodotus, viii. 90.
Harpocration records the preservation, in the Acropolis, of the
silver-footed throne on which Xerxes sat when he watched the battle of
Salamis from the slope of Mount Ægaleos.]

{170}[cz] _The Heroic heart awakes no more_.--[MS. D.]

{171}[199] [For "that most ancient military dance, the _Pyrrhica_," see
_Travels_, by E.D. Clarke, 1814, part ii. sect. 11, p. 641; and for
specimens of "Cadmean characters," _vide ibid._, p. 593.]

[200] [After his birthplace Teos was taken by the Persians, B.C. 510,
Anacreon migrated to Abdera, but afterwards lived at Samos, under the
protection of Polycrates.]

[da] _Which Hercules might deem his own._--[MS.]

{172}[201] [See the translation of a speech delivered to the Pargiots,
in 1815, by an aged citizen: "I exhort you well to consider, before you
yield yourselves up to the English, that the King of England now has in
his pay all the kings of Europe--obtaining money for this purpose from
his merchants; whence, should it become advantageous to the merchants to
sell you, in order to conciliate Ali, and obtain certain commercial
advantages in his harbours, the _English will sell you to Ali._"
--"Parga," _Edinburgh Review_, October, 1819. vol. 32, pp. 263-293.
Here, perhaps, the "Franks" are the Russians. Compare--

"Greeks only should free Greece,
Not the barbarian with his masque of peace."

_The Age of Bronze_, lines 298, 299, _Poetical Works_, 1901, v. 557,
note 1.]

[202]

[Greek: Genoi/man, i(/n' y(laen e)/pesti po/n-]
[Greek: tou pro/blêm' a(likyston, a)/-]
[Greek: kran y(po\ pla/ka Souni/ou, k.t.l.]

Sophocles, _Ajax_, lines 1190-1192.]

{173}[203] [Compare--

"What poets feel not, when they make,
A pleasure in creating,
The world, in _its_ turn, will not take
Pleasure in contemplating."

Matthew Arnold (Motto to _Poems_, 1869, vol. i. Fly-leaf).]

[204] [For this "sentence," see _Journal_, November 16, 1813, _Letters_,
1898, ii. 320, note 1; see, too, letter to Rogers, 1814, _Letters_,
1899, iii. 89, note 1.]

[db] _In digging drains for a new water-closet._--[MS.]

[205] [For Edmund Hoyle (1672-1769), see _English Bards, etc._, lines
966-968, _Poetical Works_, 1898, i. 372, note 4.]

{174}[206] [William Coxe (1747-1828), Archdeacon of Wilts, a voluminous
historian and biographer, published _Memoirs of John, Duke of
Marlborough_, in 1817-1819.]

[207] [See _Life of Milton, Works_ of Samuel Johnson, 1825, vii. pp. 67,
68, 80, _et vide ante_, p. 146, note 2.]

[208] [According to Suetonius, the youthful Titus amused himself by
copying handwriting, and boasted that he could have made a first-rate
_falsarius_. One of Cæsar's "earliest acts" was to crucify some jovial
pirates, who had kidnapped him, and with whom he pretended to be on
pleasant if not friendly terms.]

[209] [James Currie, M.D. (1756-1805), published, anonymously, the
_Works of Robert Burns, with an account of his Life, etc._, in 1800.]

[210] ["He [Cromwell] was very notorious for robbing orchards, a puerile
crime ... but grown so scandalous and injurious by the frequent spoyls
and damages of Trees, breaking of Hedges, and Inclosures, committed by
this _Apple-Dragon_, that many solemn complaints were made both to his
Father and Mother for redresse thereof; which missed not their
satisfaction and expiation out of his hide," etc.--_Flagellum_, by James
Heath, 1663, p. 5. See, too, for his "name of a Royster" at Cambridge,
_A Short View of the Late Troubles in England_, by Sir William Dugdale,
1681, p. 459.]

{175}[211] [In _The Friend_, 1818, ii. 38, Coleridge refers to "a plan
... of trying the experiment of human perfectibility on the banks of the
Susquehanna;" and Southey, in his _Letter to William Smith, Esq._
(1817), (_Essays Moral and Political_, by Robert Southey, 1832, ii. 17),
speaks of his "purpose to retire with a few friends into the wilds of
America, and there lay the foundations of a community," etc.; but the
word "_Pantisocracy_" is not mentioned. It occurs, perhaps, for the
first time in print, in George Dyer's biographical sketch of Southey,
which he contributed to _Public Characters of 1799-1800_, p. 225,
"Coleridge, no less than Southey, possessed a strong passion for poetry.
They commenced, like two young poets, an enthusiastic friendship, and in
connection with others, struck out a plan for settling in America, and
for having all things in common. This scheme they called Pantisocracy."
Hence, the phrase must have "caught on," for, in a footnote to his
review of Coleridge's _Literary Life_ (_Edin. Rev._, August, 1817, vol.
xxviii. p. 501), Jeffrey speaks of "the Pantisocratic or Lake School."]

[212] [Wordsworth _was_ "hired," but not, like Burns, "excised." Hazlitt
(_Lectures on the English Poets_, 1870, p. 174) is responsible for the
epithet: "Mr. Wordsworth might have shown the incompatibility between
the Muse and the Excise," etc.]

[dc] _Confined his pedlar poems to democracy._--[MS.]

[213] [Coleridge began his poetical contributions to the _Morning Post_
in January, 1798; his poetical articles in 1800.]

[dd] _Flourished its sophistry for aristocracy._--[MS.]

[214] [Coleridge was married to Sarah Fricker, October 5; Southey to her
younger sister Edith, November 15, 1795. Their father, Stephen Fricker,
who had been an innkeeper, and afterwards a potter at Bristol, migrated
to Bath about the year 1780. For the last six years of his life he was
owner and manager of a coal wharf. He had inherited a small fortune, and
his wife brought him money, but he died bankrupt, and left his family
destitute. His widow returned to Bristol, and kept a school. In a letter
to Murray, dated September 11, 1822 (_Letters_, 1901, vi. 113), Byron
quotes the authority of "Luttrell," and "his friend Mr. Nugent," for the
statement that Mrs. Southey and "Coleridge's Sara ... before they were
married ... were milliner's or dressmaker's apprentices." The story
rests upon their evidence. It is certain that in 1794, when Coleridge
appeared upon the scene, the sisters earned their living by going out to
work in the houses of friends, and were not, at that time, "milliners of
Bath."]

{176}[215] [For Joanna Southcott (1750-1814), see _Letters_, 1899, iii.
128-130, note 2.]

[216] [Here follows, in the original MS.--


"Time has approved Ennui to be the best
Of friends, and opiate draughts; your love and wine,
Which shake so much the human brain and breast,
Must end in languor;--men must sleep like swine:
The happy lover and the welcome guest
Both sink at last into a swoon divine;
Full of deep raptures and of bumpers, they
Are somewhat sick and sorry the next day."]

{177}[217] ["Quandoque bonus dormitat Homerus."--Hor., _Epist. Ad
Pisones_, line 359.]

[218] [Wordsworth's _Benjamin the Waggoner_, was written in 1805, but
was not published till 1819. "Benjamin" was servant to William Jackson,
a Keswick carrier, who built Greta Hall, and let off part of the house
to Coleridge.]

[219]

["There's something in a flying horse,
There's something in a huge balloon;
But through the clouds I'll never float
Until I have a little Boat,
Shaped like the crescent-moon."

Wordsworth's _Peter Bell_, stanza i.]

[220] [For Medea's escape from the wrath of Jason, "Titaniacis ablata
draconibus," see Ovid., _Met._, vii. 398.]

[221] [In his "Essay, Supplementary to the Preface," to his "Poems" of
1815, Wordsworth, commenting on a passage on Night in Dryden's _Indian
Emperor_, says, "Dryden's lines are vague, bombastic, and senseless....
The verses of Dryden once celebrated are forgotten." He is not passing
any general criticism on "him who drew _Achitophel_." In a letter to Sir
Walter Scott (November 7, 1805), then engaged on his great edition of
Dryden's _Works_, he admits that Dryden is not "as a poet any great
favourite of mine. I admire his talents and genius highly, but he is not
a poetical genius. The only qualities I can find in Dryden that are
_essentially_ poetical, are a certain ardour and impetuosity of mind,
with an excellent ear" (_Life of Wordsworth_, by W. Knight, 1889, ii.
26-29). Scott may have remarked on Wordsworth's estimate of Dryden in
conversation with Byron.]

{178}[de] _While swung the signal from the sacred tower._--[MS.]

{179}[df]
_Are not these pretty stanzas?--some folks say--_
_Downright in print_--.--[MS.]

[222] [Compare Coleridge's _Lines to Nature_, which were published in
the _Morning Herald_, in 1815, but must have been unknown to Byron--

"So will I build my altar in the fields,
And the blue sky my fretted dome shall be."]

[223] ["As early as the fifth or sixth century of the Christian era, the
port of Augustus was converted into pleasant orchards, and a lovely
grove of pines covered the ground where the Roman fleet once rode at
anchor.... This advantageous situation was fortified by art and
_labour_, and in the twentieth year of his age, the Emperor of the West
... retired to ... the walls and morasses of Ravenna."--Gibbon's
_Decline and Fall_, 1825, ii. 244, 245.]

[224] ["The first time I had a conversation with Lord Byron on the
subject of religion was at Ravenna, my native country, in 1820, while we
were riding on horseback in an extensive solitary wood of pines. The
scene invited to religious meditation. It was a fine day in spring.
'How,' he said, 'raising our eyes to heaven, or directing them to the
earth, can we doubt of the existence of God?--or how, turning them to
what is within us, can we doubt that there is something more noble and
durable than the clay of which we are formed?'"--Count Gamba.]

{180}[225] [If the _Pineta_ of Ravenna, _bois funèbre_, invited Byron
"to religious meditation," the mental picture of the "spectre huntsman"
pursuing his eternal vengeance on "the inexorable dame"--"that fatal
she," who had mocked his woes--must have set in motion another train of
thought. Such lines as these would "speak comfortably" to him--


"Because she deem'd I well deserved to die,
And _made a merit_ of her cruelty, ...
Mine is the ungrateful maid by heaven design'd:
Mercy she would not give, nor mercy shall she find."

"By her example warn'd, the rest beware;
More easy, less imperious, were the fair;
And that one hunting, which the Devil design'd
For one fair female, lost him half the kind."


Dryden's _Theodore and Honoria_ (_sub fine_).]

[226]

[Greek: Espere panta phereis]
[Greek: Phereis oinon--phereis aiga,]
[Greek: Phereis materi paida.]

_Fragment of Sappho._

[Greek: We/spere, pa/nta phe/rôn, o(/sa phai/nolis e)ske/das' au)/ôs]
[Greek: Phe/reis oi)/n phe/reis ai~)ga, Phe/reis a)/py mate/ri pai~da.]

_Sappho_, Memoir, Text, by Henry Thornton Wharton, 1895, p. 136.

"Evening, all things thou bringest
Which dawn spread apart from each other;
The lamb and the kid thou bringest,
Thou bringest the boy to his mother."

J.A. Symonds.

Compare Tennyson's _Locksley Hall, Sixty Years After_--"Hesper, whom the
poet call'd the Bringer home of all good things."]

{181}[227]

"Era già l'ora che volge il disio
Ai naviganti, e intenerisce il cuore;
Lo di ch' han detto ai dolci amici addio;
E che lo nuovo peregrin' damore
Punge, se ode squilla di lontano,
Che paia il giorno pianger che si more."

Dante's _Purgatory_, canto viii., lines 1-6.

This last line is the first of Gray's Elegy, taken by him without
acknowledgment.

[228] See Suetonius for this fact.

["The public joy was so great upon the occasion of his death, that the
common people ran up and down with caps upon their heads. And yet there
were some, who for a long time trimmed up his tomb with spring and
summer flowers, and, one while, placed his image upon his rostra dressed
up in state robes, another while published proclamations in his name, as
if he was yet alive, and would shortly come to Rome again, with a
vengeance to all his enemies."--_De XII. Cæs._, lib. vi. cap. lvii.]

[dg]
_But I'm digressing--what on earth have Nero
And Wordsworth--both poetical buffoons, etc._--[MS.]

{182}[229] [See _De Poeticâ_, cap. xxiv. See, too, the Preface to
Dryden's "Dedication" of the _Æneis_ (_Works_ of John Dryden, 1821, xiv.
130-134). Dryden is said to have derived his knowledge of Aristotle from
Dacier's translation, and it is probable that Byron derived his from
Dryden. See letter to Hodgson (_Letters_, 1891, v. 284), in which he
quotes Aristotle as quoted in Johnson's _Life of Dryden_.]


Lord George Gordon Byron