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My heart is sad, my hopes are gone,
In the days of my youth, when the heart's in its My blood runs coldly through my breast;
spring, And when I perish, thou alone
And dreams that affection can never take wing, Wilt sigh above my place of rest.
I had friends !— who has not ? — but what tongue
will avow, And yet, methinks, a gleam of peace
That friends, rosy wine! are so faithful as thou ? Doth through my cloud of anguish shine ; And for awhile my sorrows cease,
The heart of a mistress some boy may estrange, To know thy heart hath felt for mine.
Friendship shifts with the sunbeam — thou never Oh lady! blessed be that tear
canst change : It falls for one who cannot weep :
Thou grow'st old — who does not ? — but on earth Such precious drops are doubly dear
what appears, To those whose eyes no tear may steep.
Whose virtues, like thine, still increase with its years ? Sweet lady! once my heart was warm
Yet if blest to the utmost that love can bestow, With every feeling soft as thine ;
Should a rival bow down to our idol below, But beauty's self hath ceased to charm
We are jealous !- who's not ? — thou hast no such A wretch created to repine.
alloy ; Yet wilt thou weep when I am low ?
For the more that enjoy thee, the more we enjoy. Sweet lady! speak those words again; Yet if they grieve thee, say not so
Then the season of youth and its vanities past,
For refuge we fly to the goblet at last;
That truth, as of yore, is confined to the bowl.
When the box of Pandora was open'd on earth,
And Misery's triumph commenced over Mirth,
Hope was left, — was she not? - but the goblet we Felt the glow which now gladdens my heart to its core;
kiss, Let us drink!— who would not ? — since, through And care not for Hope, who are certain of bliss.
life's varied round, In the goblet alone no deception is found.
Long life to the grape ! for when summer is flown, I have tried in its turn all that life can supply;
The age of our nectar shall gladden our own: I have bask'd in the beam of a dark rolling eye;
We must die — who shall not ? — May our sins be I have loved !- who has not ? — but what heart can
And Hebe shall never be idle in heaven. That pleasure existed while passion was there?
1 [The melancholy which was now gaining fast upon the Some hours of freedom may remain as yet young poet's mind was a source of much uneasiness to his
For one who laughs alike at love and debt ; friends. It was at this period, that the following pleasant
Then, why in haste ? put off the evil day, verses were addressed to him by Mr. Hobhouse:
And snatch at youthful comforts whilst sou may !
Pause! nor so 'soon the various bliss forego
That single souls, and such alone, can know:
Ah ! why too early careless life resign,
Your morning slumber, and your evening wine ; Inspires and animates to deeds of fame;
Your loved companion, and his easy talk; Who feel the noble wish before you die
Your Muse, invoked in every peaceful walk. To raise the finger of each passer-by:
What I can no more your scenes paternal please, Hail ! may a future age admiring view
Scenes sacred long to wise, unmated ease ? A Falkland or a Clarendon in you.
The prospect lengthen'd o'er the distant down,
Lakes, meadows, rising woods, and all your own ? But as your blood with dangerous passion boils,
What I shall your Newstead, shall your cloister'd bowers, Beware! and fy from Venus' silken toils :
The high o'er-hanging arch and trembling towers ! Ah ! let the head protect the weaker heart,
Shall these, profaned with folly or with strife,
And ever fond, or ever angry wife !
But changeful woman's changing whims obey ?
Who may, perhaps, as varying humour calls, And you and Newstead must not want an heir,
Contract your cloisters and o'erthrow your walls ; Lose not your pains, and scour the country round,
Let Repton loose o'er all the ancient ground, To find a treasure that can ne'er be found'!
Change round to square, and square convert to round; No! take the first the town or court affords,
Root up the elms' and yews' too solemn gloom, Trick'd out to stock a market for the lords ;
And fill with shrubberies gay and green their room ;
Roll down the terrace to a gay parterre,
Where gravel'd walks and flowers alternate glare;
And quite transform, in ev'ry point complete,
Your gothic abbey to a country seat.
Forget the fair one, and your fate delay;
If not avert, at least defer the day, One that, in short, may help to lead a life
When you beneath the female yoke shall bend, Not farther much from comtort than from strife;
And lose your wit, your temper, and your friend. And when she dies, and disappoints your fears,
Trin. Coll. Camb. 1808. Shall leave some joys for your declining years.
In his mother's copy of Mr. Hobhouse's volume, now be
fore us, Lord Byron has here written with a pencil, “I But, as your early youth some time allows,
have lost them all, and shall wed accordingly. 1811. B.''] Nor custom yet demands you for a spouse,
STANZAS TO A LADY !, ON LEAVING
And I would fain have loved as well,
'Tis done — and shivering in the gale The bark unfurls her snowy sail ; And whistling o'er the bending mast, Loud sings on high the fresh'ning blast; And I must from this land be gone, Because I cannot love but one. But could I be what I have been, And could I see what I have seen Could I repose upon the breast Which once my warmest wishes blest I should not seek another zone Because I cannot love but one. 'Tis long since I beheld that eye Which gave me bliss or misery; And I have striven, but in vain, Never to think of it again : For though I fly from Albion, I still can only love but one. As some lone bird, without a mate, My weary heart is desolate; I look around, and cannot trace One friendly smile or welcome face, And ev'n in crowds am still alone, Because I cannot love but one. And I will cross the whitening foam, And I will seek a foreign home; Till I forget a false fair face, I ne'er shall find a resting-place ; My own dark thoughts I cannot shun, But ever love, and love but one. The poorest, veriest wretch on earth Still finds some hospitable hearth, Where friendship's or love's softer glow May smile in joy or soothe in woe; But friend or leman I have none, Because I cannot love but one. I go — but wheresoe'er I flee, There's not an eye will weep for me; There's not a kind congenial heart, Where I can claim the meanest part; Nor thou, who hast my hopes undone, Wilt sigh, although I love but one. To think of every early scene, Of what we are, and what we've been, Would whelm some softer hearts with woe But mine, alas ! has stood the blow; Yet still beats on as it begun, And never truly loves but one. And who that dear loved one may be Is not for vulgar eyes to see, And why that early love was crost, Thou know'st the best, I feel the most; But few that dwell beneath the sun Have loved so long, and loved but one. I've tried another's fetters too, With charms Perchance as fair to view;
LINES TO MR. HODGSON. WRITTEN ON BOARD THE LISBON PACKET. Huzza ! Hodgson, we are going,
Our embargo 's off at last ; Favourable breezes blowing
Bend the canvass o'er the mast. From aloft the signal's streaming,
Hark! the farewell gun is fired ; Women screeching, tars blaspheming, Tell us that our time's expired.
Here's a rascal
Come to task all,
And all hands must ply the oar;
We're impatient, — push from shore. “ Have a care ! that case holds liquor —
Stop the boat - I'm sick -oh Lord!" “ Sick, ma'am, damme, you ll be sicker, Ere you've been an hour on board."
Thus are screaming
Men and women,
All are wrangling, Stuck together close as wax. — Such the general noise and racket, Ere we reach the Lisbon Packet. Now we've reach'd her, lo ! the captain,
Gallant Kidd, commands the crew; Passengers their berths are clapt in,
Some to grumble, some to spew. “ Hey day ! call you that a cabin ?
Why 't is hardly three feet square ; Not enough to stow Queen Mab in Who the deuce can harbour there?"
“ Who, sir ? plenty
“ Did they? Jesus,
How you squeeze us !
[In the original," To Mrs. Musters.") ? [Thus corrected by himself, in his mother's copy of Mr. Llobhouse's Miscellany; the two last lines being originally
• Though wheresoe'er my bark may run,
I love but thee, I love but one.")
Fletcher ! Murray! Bobi! where are you?
Stretch'd along the deck like logs. Bear a hand, you jolly tar, you !
Here's a rope's cnd for the dogs.
As the hatchway down be rolls,
“ Here's a stanza
No, a cup
" What's the matter ?"
Lord knows when we shall come back ! Breczes foul and tempests murky
May unship us in a crack.
As philosophers allow,
Laugh at all things,
Great and small things, Sick or well, at sea or shore ;
While we 're quaffing,
Let's have laughing
Falmouth Roads, June 30. 1909.
[First published, 1830.)
Yet here, amidst this barren isle,
Where panting Nature droops the head, Where only thou art seen to smile,
I view my parting hour with dread. Though far from Albin's cragsy shore,
Divided by the dark blue main ; A few, brief, rolling, seasons o'er,
Perchance I view her cliffs again : But wheresoe'er I now may roam,
Through scorching clime, and varied sea, Though Time restore me to my home,
I ne'er shall bend mine eyes on thee : On thee, in whom at once conspire
All charms which heedless hearts can move, Whoin but to see is to admire,
And, oh ! forgive the word — to love. Forgive the word, in one who ne'er
With such a word can more offend ; And since thy heart I cannot share,
Believe me, what I am, thy friend. And who so cold as look on thee,
Thou lovely wand'rer, and be less ?
The friend of Beauty in distress ?
Through Danger's most destructive path, Had braved the death-wing'd tempest's blast,
And 'scaped a tyrant's fiercer wrath ? Lady ! when I shall view the walls
Where free Byzantium once arose, And Stamboul's Oriental balls
The Turkish tyrants now enclose ; 'Though mightiest in the lists of fame,
That glorious city still shall be ;
As spot of thy nativity :
When I behold that wondrous scene, Since where thou art I may not dwell, 'T will soothe to be, where thou hast been.
LINES WRITTEN IN AN ALBUM, AT MALTA.
As o'er the cold sepulchral stone
Some name arrests the passer-by ;
May mine attract thy pensive eye !
Perchance in some succeeding year,
September 14. 1809.
STANZAS COMPOSED DURING A THUNDER-STORM.
TO FLORENCE.S Oh Lady! when I left the shore,
The distant shore which gave me birth, I hardly thought to grieve once more,
To quit another spot on earth :
Chill and mirk is the nightly blast,
Where Pindus' mountains rise, And angry clouds are pouring fast
The vengeance of the skies.
"(Lord Byron's three servants.) ? (in the letter in which these lively verses were enclosed, Lord Byron says:-" I leave England without regret - I shall return to it without pleasure. I am like Adam, the first convict sentenced to transportation ; but I have no Eve, and have eaten no apple but what was sour as a crab; and thus ends my first chapter.")
3 [These lines were written at Malta. The lady to whom they were addressed, and whom he afterwards apostrophises in the stanzas on the thunderstorm of Zitza and in Childe Harold, is thus mentioned in a letter to his mother:-" This letter is committed to the charge of a very extraordinary lady, whom you have doubtless heard of, Mrs. Spencer Sunith, of whose escape the Marquis de Salvo published a narrative a few years ago. She has since been shipwrecked; and her life has been from its commencement so fertile in remarkable incidents, that in a romance they would appear improbable.
She was born at Constantinople, where her father, Baron Herbert, was Austrian ambassador; married unhappily, yet has never been impeached in point of character; excited the vengeance of Buonaparte, by taking a part in some conspi. racy; several times risked her life ; and is not yet five and twenty. She is here on her way to England to join her husband, being obliged to leave Trieste, where she was paying a visit to her mother, by the approach of the French, and embarks soon in a ship of war. Since my arrival here I have had scarcely any other coirpanion. I have found her very pretty, very accomplished, and extremely eccentric. Buonaparte is even now so incensed against her, that her life would be in danger if she were taken prisoner a second time."']
4 (This thunderstorm occurred during the night of the Ilth October, 1509, when Lord Byron's guides had lost the road to Zitza, near the range of inountains formerly called
To others give a thousand smiles,
To me a single sigh."
The paleness of thy face,
Of melancholy grace,
Some coxcomb's raillery ;
Who ever thinks on thee.
When sever'd hearts repine,
And mourns in search of thine.
WRITTEN IN PASSING THE AMBRACLAY GULF.
THROUGH cloudless skies, in silvery sheen,
Full beams the moon on Actium's coast; And on these waves, for Egypt's queen,
The ancient world was won and lost.
Our guides are gone, our hope is lost,
And lightnings, as they play,
Or gild the torrent's spray.
When lightning broke the gloom -
'Tis but a Turkish tomb.
I hear a voice exclaim
On distant England's name.
Another - 't is to tell
And lead us where they dwell.
To tempt the wilderness ?
Our signal of distress ?
To try the dubious road ?
That outlaws were abroad.
More fiercely pours the storm !
To keep my bosom warm.
O'er brake and craggy brow; While elements exhaust their wrath,
Sweet Florence, where art thou ?
Thy bark hath long been gone :
Bow down my head alone !
When last I press'd thy lip;
Impellid thy gallant ship.
Hast trod the ore of Spain;
Should linger on the main. And since I now remember thee
In darkness and in dread, As in those hours of revelry
Which mirth and music sped ;
If Cadiz yet be free,
Look o'er the dark blue sea;
Endear'd by days gone by;
And now upon the scene I look,
The azure grave of many a Roman ; Where stern Ambition once forsook
His wavering crown to follow woman. Florence ! whom I will love as well
As ever yet was said or sung, (Since Orpheus sang his spouse from
Whilst thou art fair and I am young; Sweet Florence ! those were pleasant times,
When worlds were staked for ladies' eyes : Had bards as many realms as rhymes,
Thy charms might raise new Antonies.
Yet, by thine eyes and ringlets curld !
November 14. 1809.
THE SPELL IS BROKE, THE CHARM IS
Thus is it with life's fitful fever:
Delirium is our best deceiver.
Recalls the woes of Nature's charter, And he that acts as wise men ought,
But lives, as saints have died, a martyr.
Pindus, in Albania. Mr. Hobhouse, who liad rode on before the rest of the party, and arrived at Zitza just as the evening set in, describes the thunder as “ roaring without intermission, the echoes of one peal not ceasing to roll in the mountains, before another tremendous crash burst over our heads; whilst the plains and the distant hills appeared in a perpetual blaze." *** The tempest," he says, " was altogether territic, and worthy of the Grecian Jove. My Friend, with the priest and the servants, did not enter our hut till three
in the morning. I now learnt from him that they had lost their way, and that, after wandering up and down in total ig. norance of their position, they had stopped at last near some Turkish tombstones and a torrent, which they saw by the Aashes of lightning. They had been thus exposed for nine hours. It was long before we ceased to talk of the thunderstorm in the plain of Zitza."]
1 [" These stanzas," says Mr. Moore," have a music in them, which, independently of all meaning, is enchanting.") WRITTEN AFTER SWIMMING FROM SESTOS
TO ABYDOS. 1
Leander, who was nightly wont
To cross thy stream, broad Hellespont !
LINES WRITTEN IN THE TRAVELLERS' BOOK
AT ORCHOMENUS. IN THIS BOOK A TRAVELLER HAD WRITTEN :“ Fair Albion, smiling, sees her son depart To trace the birth and nursery of art : Noble his object, glorious is his aim; He comes to Athens, and he writes his namc. BENEATH WHICHI LORD BYRON INSERTED TIE FOLLOWING: The modest bard, like many a bard unknown, Rhymes on our names, but wisely hides his own; But yet, whoe'er he be, to say no worse, His name would bring more credit than his versc.
If, when the wintry tempest roard,
He sped to Hero, nothing loth, And thus of old thy current pour'd,
Fair Venus ! how I pity both !
For me, degenerate modern wretch,
Though in the genial month of May, My dripping limbs I faintly stretch,
And think I've done a feat to-day.
But since he cross'd the rapid tide,
According to the doubtful story, To woo, - and - Lord knows what beside,
And swam for Love, as I for Glory;
'T were hard to say who fared the best :
Sad mortals ! thus the Gods still plague you! He lost his labour, I my jest ; For he was drown'd, and I've the ague. ?
May 9. 1810.
MAID OF ATHENS, ERE WE PART.
Ζώη μου, σας αγαπώ. Maid of Athens , ere we part, Give, oh, give back my heart ! Or, since that has left my breast, Kcep it now, and take the rest ! Hear my vow before I go, Ζώη μου, σας αγαπώ. 5 By those tresses unconfined, Woo'd by each Ægean wind ; By those lids whose jetty fringe Kiss thy soft cheeks' blooming tinge ; By those wild eyes like the roe, Ζώη μου, σας αγαπώ,
! On the 3d of May, 1810, while the Salsette (Captain Bathurst) was lying in the Dardanelles, Lieutenant Lkenhead of that frigate and the writer of these rhymes swam from the European shore to the Asiatic- by the by, from Abydos to Sestos would have been more correct. The whole distance from the place whence we started to our landing on the other side, including the length we were carried by the current, was computed by those ou board the frigate at upwards of four English míles ; though the actual breadth is barely one. The rapidity of the current is such that no boat can row directly across,' and it may, in some measure, be estimated from the circumstance of the whole distance being accomplished by one of the parties in an hour and fire, and by tho other in an hour and ten, minutes. The water was extremely cold, from the melting of the mountain snows. About three weeks before, in April, we had made an attempt ; but, having ridden all the way from the Troad the same morning, and the water being of an icy chillness, we found it necessary to postpone the completion till the frigate an. chored below the castles, when we swam the straits, as just stated; entering a considerable way above the European, and landing below the Asiatic, fort. Chevalier says that a young Jew swam the same distance for his mistress, and Oliver mentions its having been done by a Neapolitan; but our consul, Tarragona, remembered neither of these circumstances, and tried to dissuade us from the attempt. A number of the Salsctle's crew were known to have accomplished a greater distance ; and the only thing that surprised me was, that, as doubts had been entertained of the truth of Leander's story, no traveller had ever endeavoured to ascertain its practicability.
(“ My companion," says Mr. Hobhouse, “had before made a more perilous, but less celebrated passage ; for I recollect that, when we were in Portugal, he swam from Old Lisbon to Belem Castle, and having to contend with a tide and counter current, the wind blowing freshly, was but little less than two hours in crossing."]
3 [At Orchomenus, where stood the Temple of the Gracer, I was tempted to exclaim, " Whither have the Graces tied ? Little did I expect to find them here; yet here comes one of them with golden cups and coffee, and another with a book. The book is a register of names, some of which are far sounded by the voice of fame. Among them is Lord Byron's, connected with some lines which I here send you. H. W. WILLIAMS.)
* (We copy the following interesting account of the Maid of Athens and her family from the late eminent utist, Mr. Hugh Williams of Edinburgh's, “ Travels in Italy, Greece," &c. --" Our cervant, who had gone before to procure accommodation, met us at the gate, and conducted us to Theodore
Macri, the Consulina's, where we at present live. This lady is the widow of the consul, and has three lovely daughters; the eldest celebrated for her beauty, and said to be the
Maid of Athens' of Lord Byron. 'Their apartment is immediately opposite to ours, and, if you could see them, as we do now, through the gently waving aromatic plants before our window, you would leave your heart in Athens. Theresa, the Maid of Athens, Catinco, and Mariana, are of middle stature. On the crown of the head of cach is a red Albanian skull-cap, with a blue tassel spread out and fastened down like a star. Near the edge or bottom of the skull-cap is a handkerchief of various colours bound round their temples. The youngest wears her hair loose, falling on her shoulders, -- the hair behind descending down the back nearly to the waist, and, as usual, mixed with silk. The two eldest gene. rally have their hair bound, and fastened under the handkerchief. Their upper robe is a pelisse edged with sur, hanging loose down to the ankles; below is a handkerchief of muslin covering the bosom, and terminating at the waist, which is short ; under that, a gown of striped silk or muslin, with a gore round the swell of the loins, falling in front in graceful negligence; - white stockings and yellow slippers complete their attire. The two eldest have black, or dark, hair and eyes; their visage oral, and complexion somewhat pale, with teeth of dazzling whiteness. Their cheeks are rounded, and noses straight, rather inclined to aquiline. The youngest, Mariana, is very fair, her face not so finely rounded, but has a gayer expression than her sisters', whose countenances, except when the conversation has something of mirth in it, may be said to be rather pensive. Their persong are elegant, and their manners pleasing and ladylike, such as would be fascinating in any country. They possess very considerable powers of conversation, and their ininds seem to be more instructed than those of the Greek women in general. With such attractions, it would, indeed, be remarkable, if they did not meet with great attentions from the travellers who occasionally are resident in Athens. They sit in the eastern style, a little reclined, with their limbs gathered under them on the divan, and without shoes. Their employments are the needle, tambouring, and reading." There is a beautiful engraving of the Maid of Athens in Finden's Illustrations of Byron, No. I.)
5 Romaic expression of tenderness: if I translate it, I shall affront the gentlemen, as it may seem that I supposed they could not; and if I do not, I may affront the ladies. For fear of any misconstruction on the part of the latter, I shall do so, begging pardon of the learned. It means. " My life, I love you!
which counds very prettily in all languages, and is as much in fashion in Greece at this dar as, Jurenai tells us, the two first words were amongst the Roman ladies, whose erotic expressions were all Hellcnised.