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TO MR MURRAY.
waiter, after asking him to bring a glass of water, to from a gallop along the banks of the Brenta-time, which the man answered, 'I will, sir.'-'You will! sunset. -G-dd-1,--I say, you mush!' And I will sub
Yours, mit this to the decision of any person or persons to
“B.” be appointed by both, on a fair examination of the circumstances of this as compared with the preceding
LETTER CCLXXXVI. publications. So, there's for you. There is always some row or other previously to all our publications: it should seem that, on approximating, we can never quite get over the natural antipathy of author and
“La Mira, near Venice, July 1st, 1817. bookseller, and that more particularly the ferine “Since my former letter, I have been working up nature of the latter must break forth.
my impressions into a Fourth Canto of Childe Ha“ You are out about the Third Canto: I have not rold, of which I have roughened off about rather betdone, nor designed, a line of continuation to that ter than thirty stanzas, and mean to go on; and propoem. I was too short a time at Rome for it, and bably to make this. Fytte' the concluding one of the have no thought of recommencing.
poem, so that you may propose against the autumn “I cannot well explain to you by letter what I to draw out the conscription for 1818. You must conceive to be the origin of Mrs Leigh's notion about provide moneys, as this new resumption bodes you
Tales of my Landlord ;' but it is some points of the certain disburseinents. Somewhere about the end of characters of Sir E. Mauley and Burley, as well as September October, I propose to be under way one or two of the jocular portions, on which it is (i. e. in the press); but I have no idea yet of the profounded, probably.
bable length or calibre of the Canto, or what it will “If you have received Dr Polidori, as well as a be good for; but I mean to be as mercenary as posparcel of books, and you can be of use to him, be so. sible, an example (I do not mean of any individual in I never was much more disgusted with any human particular, and least of all any person or persons of production than with the eternal nonsense, and tra- our mutual acquaintance) which I should have folcasseries, and emptiness, and ill-humour, and vanity lowed in my youth, and I might still have been a of that young person; but he has some talent, and is prosperous gentleman. a man of honour, and has dispositions of amendment, “No tooth-powder, no letters, no recent tidings of in which he has been aided by a little subsequent you. experience, and may turn out well. Therefore, use
“Mr Lewis is at Venice, and I am going up to your government interest for him, for he is improved stay a week with him there as it is one of his enthu. and improvable.
siams also to like the city. “ Yours, &c.”
“I stood in Venice on the ‘Bridge of Sighs,' &c., &c.
“The ‘Bridge of Sighs' (i. e. Ponte de'i Sospiri) is LETTER CCLXXXV.
that which divides, or rather joins the palace of the Doge to the prison of the state. It has two pas
sages : the criminal went by the one to judgment, and TO MR MURRAY.
returned by the other to death, being strangled in a
chamber adjoining, where there was a mechanical “La Mira, near Venice, Jure 18th, 1817.
process for the purpose. 46 Jnclosed is a letter to Dr Holland from Pinde- “ This is the first stanza of our new Canto; and monte. Not knowing the doctor's address, I am de
now for a line of the second : sired to inquire, and perhaps, being a literary man,
" In Venice Tasso's echoes are no more, you will know or discover his haunt near some popu
And silent rows the songless gondolier, lous churchyard. I have written to you a scolding
Her palaces, &c., &c. letter-I believe, upon a misapprehended passage in your letter-but never mind : it will du for next time,
“ You know that formerly the gondoliers sung aland you will surely deserve it. Talking of doctors ways, and Tasso's Gierusalemme was their ballad. reminds me once more to recommend to you one who Venice is built on seventy-two islands. will not recommend himself, the Doctor Polidori. “There ! there's a brick of your new Babel! and If you can help him to a publisher, do; or, if you now, sirrah! what say you to the sample ? have any sick relation, I would advise his advice :
“Yours, &c. all the patients he had in Italy are dead-Mr * *'s "P.S. I shall write again by and by." son, Mr Horner, and Lord G**, whom he embowelled with great success at Pisa.
LETTER CCLXXXVII. “ Remember me to Moore, whom I congratulate. How is Rogers ? and what is become of Campbell
TO MR MURRAY. and all t’other fellows of the Druid order ? I got Maturin's Bedlam at last, but no other parcel; I am
“La Mira, near Venice, July 8th, 1817. in fits for the tooth-powder, and the magnesia. I “If you can convey the inclosed letter to its adwant some of Burkitt's Soda-powders. Will you dress, or discover the person to whom it is directed, tell Mr Kinnaird that I have written him two letters you will confer a favour upon the Venetian creditor on pressing business (about Newstead, &c.), to which of a deceased Englishman. This epistle is a dun to I humbly solicit his attendance. I am just returned his executor, for house-rent. The name of the insol
TO MR MOORE.
vent defunct is, or was, Porter Valter, according to extracts I have seen, please me very much indeed, the account of the plaintiff, which I rather suspect and I feel impatient for the whole. ought to be Walter Porter, according to our mode of
“With regard to the critique on ‘Manfred,' you collocation. If you are acquainted with any dead man
have been in such a devil of a hurry that you have of the like name a good deal in debt, pray dig him only sent me the half: if breaks off at page 294. Send up, and tell him that a pound of his fair flesh'or me the rest; and also page 270, where there is an the ducats are required, and that if you deny them, account of the supposed origin of this dreadful story,' fie upon your law !"
-in which, by the way, whatever it may be, the con“I hear nothing more from you about Moore's jecturer is out, and knows nothing of the matter. I poem, Rogers, or other literary phenomena; but to had a better origin than he can devise or divine, for morrow, being post-day, will bring perhaps, some
the soul of him. tidings. I write to you with people talking Venetian “You say nothing of Manfred's luck in the world; all about, so that you must not expect this letter to and I care not. He is one of the best of my misbebe all English.
gotten, say what they will. “The other day, I had a squabble on the highway “I got at last an extract, but no parcels. They as follows: I was riding pretty quickly from Dolo will come, I suppose, some time or other. I am come home about eight in the evening, when I passed a
up to Venice for a day or two to bathe, and am just party of people in a hired carriage, one of whom, going to take a swim in the Adriatic; so, good evenpoking his head out of the window, began bawling ing—the post waits. to me in an inarticulate but insolent manner. I
“ Yours, &c. wheeled my horse round, and overtaking, stopped the coach, and said, “Signor, have you any commands “P.S. Pray, was Manfred's speech to the Sun still for me?' He replied, impudently as to manner, 'No.' retained in Act Third? I hope so: it was one of the I then asked him what he meant by that unseemly best in the thing, and better than the Colosseum. I noise, to the discomfiture of the passers-by. He re- have done fifty-six of Canto Fourth, Childe Harold; plied by sume piece of impertinence, to which I an- so down with your ducats.” swered by giving him a violent slap in the face. I then dismounted (for this passed at the window, I
LETTER CCLXXXIX. being on horseback still), and opening the door desired him to walk out, or I would give hiin another. But the first had settled him except as to words, of
« La Mira, Venice, July 10th, 1817. which he poured forth a profusion in blasphemies,
“ Murray, the Mokanna of booksellers, has conswearing that he would go to the police and avouch / trived to send me extracts from Lalla Rookh by the a battery sans provocation. I said he lied, and was a **, and, if he did not hold his tongue, should be drag- contain a short outline and quotations from the two
post. They are taken from some magazine, and ged out and beaten anew.—He then held his tongue.
first Poems. I am very much delighted with what is I of course told him my name and residence, and de
before me, and very thirsty for the rest. You have fied him to the death, if he were a gentleman, or not a gentleman, and had the inclination to be genteel in and the tone of the East is perfectly preserved; so
caught the colours as if you had been in the rainbow, the way of combat. He went to the police, but there
that *** and its author must be somewhat in the having been bystanders in the road,-particularly a
back-ground, and learn that it requires something soldier, who had seen the business, -as well as my
more than to have been upon the hunch of a droservant, notwithstanding the oaths of the coachman
medary to compose a good oriental story. I am glad and five insides besides the plaintiff, and a good deal
you have changed the title from ‘Persian Tale.' of paying on all sides, his complaint was dismissed,
“I suspect you have written a devilish fine comhe having been the aggressor ;-—and I was subse position, and I rejoice in it froin my heart; because quently inforined that, bad I not given him a blow,
the Douglas and the Percy both together are conhe might have been had into durance.
fident against a world in arıns. I hope you won't be “ So set down this,—that in Aleppo once 'I'beat
affronted at my looking on us as 'birds of a feather;' a Venetian ;' but I assure you that he deserved it, though on whatever subject you had written, I should for I am a quiet man, like Candide, though with
have been very happy in your success. somewhat of his fortune in being forced to forego my
“There is a simile of an orange tree's 'flowers and natural meekness every now and then.
fruits,' which I should have liked better, if I did not “ Yours, &c.
believe it to be a reflection on “ B."
“Do you remember Thurlow's poem to Sam
When Rogers;' and that d-d supper of Rancliffe's LETTER CCLXXXVIII.
that ought to have been a dinner? ‘Ah, Master Shallow, we have heard the chimes at midnight'But
'My boat is on the shore, « Venice, July 9th, 1817.
And my bark is on the sea; “I have got the sketch and extracts from Lalla
But, before I go, Tom Moore, Rookh—which I humbly suspect will knock up
Here's a double health to thee! and show young gentlemen that something more than
“Here's a sigh to those who love me,
And a smile to those who hate; having been across a camel's hump is necessary to
And whatever sky 's above me, write a good oriental tale. The plan, as well as the
Here's u beart for every fate.
TO MR MURRAY.
“ Though the ocean roar around me,
may be, he likes the last, and is not much taken with Yet it still shall bear me on;
the first, of these performances. Of Manuel, I think, Though a desert should surround me, It hath springs that may be won.
with the exception of a few capers, it is as heavy a
nightmare as was ever bestrode by indigestion. “ Were 't the last drop in the well,
“ Of the extracts I can but judge as extracts, and I As I gasp'd upon the brink, Ere my fainting spirit fell,
prefer the ‘ Peri' to the 'Silver Veil.' Heseems not 'Tis to thee that I would drink,
so much at home in his versification of the Silver
Veil,’and a little embarrassed with his horrors; but the “ With that water, as this wine, The libation I would pour
conception of the character of the impostor is fine, and Should be-peace with thine and mine,
the plan of great scope for his genius,--and I doubt And a health to thee, Tom Moore.
not that, as a whole, it will be very Arabesque and
beautiful. 4 This should have been written fifteen moons ago
6 Your late epistle is not the most abundant in - the first stanza was. I am just come out froin an
information, and has not yet been succeeded by any hour's swim in the Adriatic; and I write to you with other; so that I know nothing of your own cona black-eyed Venetian girl before me, reading Boccerns, or of any concerns, and as I never hear cacio.
from any body but yourself who does not tell me “Last week I had a row on the road (I came up to something as disagreeable as possible, I should not Venice from my casino, a few miles on the Paduan be sorry to hear from you : and as it is not very proroad, this blessed day, to bathe) with a fellow in a
bable,-if I can, by any device or possible arrangecarriage, who was inpudent to my horse. I
ment with regard to my personal affairs, so arrange
gave him a swinging box on the ear, which sent him to the it, -that I shall return soon, or reside ever in England, police, who dismissed his complaint. Witnesses had all that you tell me will be all I shall know or inquire seen the transaction. He first shouted, in an unseemly after, as to our beloved realm of Grub-street, and the way, to frighten my palfrey. I wheeled round, rode black brethren and blue sisterhood of that extensive up to the window, and asked him what he meant.
suburb of Babylon. Have you had no new babe of He grinned, and said some foolery, which produced literature sprung up to replace the dead, the distant, him an immediate slap in the face, to his utter dis- the tired, and the retired ? no prose, no verse, no comfilure. Much blasphemy ensued, and some me
nothing ?” nace, which I stopped by dismounting and opening the carriage door, and intimating an intention of mending the road with his immediate remains, if he did not
LETTER CCXCI. hold his tongue. He held it.
TO MR MURRAY. “Monk Lewis is here—how pleasant !"* He is a very good fellow, and very much yours. So is Sam
“Venice, July 20th, 1817. so is every body-and, amongst the number,
“ I write to give you notice that I have completed
the fourth and ullimate Canto of Childe Harold. It
“B. consists of 126 stanzas, and is consequently the longest “P.S. What think you of Manfred ?” *
of the four. It is yet to be copied and polished ; and the notes are to come, of which it will require more
than the third Canto, as it necessarily treats more LETTER CCXC.
of works of art than of nature. It shall be sent towards autumn ;-and now for our barter. What do you bid ? eh ? you s'iall have samples, an’ it so please
you : but I wish to know what I am to expect (as the « La Mira, near Venice, July, 15th, 1817.
saying is) in these hard times, when poetry does not “I have finished (that is, written—the file comes
let for half its value. If you are disposed to do what afterwards) ninety and eight stanzas of the Fourth
Mrs Winifred Jenkins calls the handsome thing,' Canto, which I mean to be the concluding one. It
I may perhaps throw you some odd matters to the will probably be about the same length as the Third, lot,-translations, or slight originals; there is no saying being already of the dimensions of the first or second
what be on the anvil between this and the book. Cantos. I look upon parts of it as very good, that is, ing season. Recollect that it is the last Canto, and if the three former are good, but this we shall see; completes the work; whether as good as the others, and at any rate, good or not, it is rather a different I cannot judge, in course-least of all as yet,—but it style from the last—less metaphysical—which, at any shall be as little worse as I can help. I may, perrate, will be a variety. I sent you the shaft of the haps, give some little gossip in the notes as to the column as a specimen the other day, i. e, the first stanza. So you may be thinking of its arrival towards present state of Italian literati and literature, being
acquainted with some of their capi—men as well as autumn, whose winds will not be the only ones to be books; but this depends upon my humour at the time. raised, if so be as how that it is ready by that time.
So, now, pronounce: I say nothing. “I lent Lewis, who is at Venice (in or on the Ca
"" When you have got the whole four Cantos, I nalaccio, the Grand Canal), your extracts from Lalla
think you might venture on an edition the whole Rookh and Manuel,t and, out of contradiction, it
poem in quarto, with spare copies of the two last for
the purchasers of the old edition of the first two. * An allusion (such as often occurs in these letters) to
There is a hint for you, worthy of the Row; and an anecdote with which he had been amused. † A tragedy, by the Rev. Mr Maturin.
now, perpend, pronounce.
TO MR MURRAY.
TO MR MURRAY.
“I have not received a word from you of the fate of · Manfred' or “Tasso,' which seems to me odd, whether they have failed or succeeded.
LETTER CCXCIII. 66 As this is a scrawl of business, and I have lately written at length and often on other subjects, I will only add that I am, &c.”
«Venice, August 12th, 1817.
“I have been very sorry to hear of the death of LETTER CCXCII.
Madame de Staël, not only because she had been
very kind to me at Copet, but because now I can TO MR MURRAY.
never requite her. In a general point of view, she « La Mira, near Venice, August 7th, 1817. will leave a great gap in society and literature. “ Your letter of the 18th, and, what will please “With regard to death, I doubt that we have any you, as it did me, the parcel sent by the good' natured right to pity the dead for their own sakes. aid and abetment of Mr Croker, are arrived.- “ The copies of Manfred and Tasso are arrived, Messrs Lewis and Hobhouse are here: the former thanks to Mr Croker's cover. You have destroyed in the same house, the latter a few hundred yards the whole effect and moral of the poem by omitting distant.
the last line of Manfred's speaking; and why this was “ You say nothing of Manfred, from which its fail- done, I know not. Why you persist in saying nothing ure may be inferred; but I think it odd you should of the thing itself, I am equally at a loss to conjecture. not say so at once. I know nothing, and hear abso- If it is for fear of telling me something disagreeable, lutely nothing, of any body or any thing in England; you are wrong; because sooner or later I must know and there are no English papers, so that all you say it, and I am not so new, nor so raw, nor so inexwill be news-of any person, or thing, or things. perienced, as not to be able to bear, not the mere I am at present very anxious about Newstead, and paltry, petty disappointments of authorship, but things sorry that Kinnaird is leaving England at this minute, more serious,—at least I hope so, and that what you though I do not tell him so, and would rather he may think irritability is merely mechanical, and only should have his pleasure, although it may not in this acts like galvanism on a dead body, or the muscular instance tend to my profit.
motion which survives sensation. “If I understand rightly, you have paid into Mor. “If it is that you are out of humour, because I land's 1500 pounds: as the agreement in the paper is wrote to you a sharp letter, recollect that it was partly two thousand guineas, there will remain therefore from a misconception of your letter, and partly besix hundred pounds, and not five hundred, the odd cause you did a thing you had no right to do without hundred being the extra to make up the specie. Six consulting me. hundred and thirty pounds will bring it to the like for “I have, however, heard good of Manfred from two Manfred and Tasso, making a total of twelve hundred other quarters, and from men who would not be and thirty, I believe, for I am not a good calculator. scrupulous in saying what they thought, or what was I do not wish to press you, but I tell you fairly that it said; and so 'good morrow to you, good Master will be a convenience to me to have it paid as soon as Lieutenant.' it can be made convenient to yourself.
“I wrote to you twice about the 4th Canto, which “ The new and last Canto is 130 stanzas in length; you will answer at your pleasure. Mr Hobhouse and and may be made more or less. I have fixed no I have come up for a day to the city; Mr Lewis is price, even in idea, and have no notion of what it may gone to England; and I am be good for. There are no metaphysics in it; at
“ Yours.” least, I think not. Mr Hobhouse has promised me a copy of Tasso's Will, for notes; and I have some
LETTER CCXCIV. curious things to say about Ferrara, and Parisina's story, and perhaps a farthing candle's worth of light
TO MR MURRAY. upon the present state of Italian literature. I shall hardly be ready by October; but that don't matter.
“La Mira, near Venice, August 21st, 1817. I have all to copy and correct, and the notes to write. “I take you at your word about Mr Hanson, and
“I do not know whether Scott will like it; but I will feel obliged if you will go to him, and request have called him the · Ariosto of the North' in my Mr Davies also to visit him by my desire, and repeat text. If he should not, say so in time.
that I trust that neither Mr Kinnaird's absence nor “An Italian translation of 'Glenarvon' came lately mine will prevent his taking all proper steps to acto be printed at Venice. The censor (Sr Petrotini) celerate and promote the sale of Newstead and Rochrefused to sanction the publication till he had seen me dale, upon which the whole of my future personal on the subject. I told him that I did not recognize comfort depends. It is impossible for me to express the slightest relation between that book and myself; how much any delays upon these points would inconbut that, whatever opinions might be upon that sub- venience me; and I do not know a greater obligation ject, I would never prevent or oppose the publication that can be conferred upon me than the pressing these of any book, in any language, on my own private things upon Hanson, and making him act according account; and desired him (against his inclination) to to my wishes. I wish you would speak out, at least permit the poor translator to publish his labours. It to me, and tell me what you allude to by your cold is going forwards in consequence. You may say this, way of mentioning him. All mysteries at such a with my compliments, to the author.
distance are not merely tormenting but mischievous, “ Yours.” and may be prejudicial to my interests; so, pray ex
pound, that I may consult with Mr. Kinnaird when
They 're at this moment in discussion
On poor De Staël's late dissolution. he arrives; and remember that I prefer the most
Her book, they say, was in advancedisagreeable certainties to hints and inuendoes. The
Pray Heaven, she tell the truth of France ! devil take every body: I never can get any person to be explicit about any thing or any body, and my
« Thus run our time and tongues away.whole life is passed in conjectures of what people
But, to return, sir, to your play : mean : you all talk in the style of C** L **'s novels.
Sorry, sir, but I can not deal, “ It is not Mr St John, but Mr St Aubyn, son of
Unless 'twere acted by O'Neill Sir John St Aubyn Polidori knows him, and in
My hands so full, my head so busy,
I'm almost dead, and always dizzy; troduced him to me. He is of Oxford, and has got my
And so, with endless truth and hurry, parcel. The doctor will ferret him out, or ought.
Dear Doctor, I am yours, The parcel contains many letters, some of Madame
“ JOHN MURRAY. de Staël's, and other people's, besides MSS., &c. By - if I find the gentleman, and he don't find
“P.S. I've done the fourth and last Canto, which the parcel, I will say something he won't like to hear. amounts to 133 stanzas. I desire you to name a price; “ You want a
civil and delicate declension' for if you don't, I will; so I advise you in time. the medical tragedy? Take it,
“ Yours, &c.
“ There will be a good many notes.”
Among those minor misrepresentations of which it
was Lord Byron's fate to be the victim, advantage And drenches handkerchiefs like towels
was, at this time, taken of his professed distate to With tears, that, in a flux of grief,
the English, to accuse him of acts of inhospitality, Afford hysterical relief To shatter'd nerves and quicken'd pulses,
and even rudeness, towards some of his fellowWhich your catastrophe convulses.
countrymen. How far different was his treatment “ I like your moral and machinery;
of all who ever visited him, many grateful testimonies Your plot, too, has such scope for scenery! might be collected to prove; but I shall here content Your dialogue is apt and smart ;
myself with selecting a few extracts from an account The play's concoction full of art ; Your hero raves, your heroine cries,
given me by Mr Henry Joy of a visit which, in comAll stab, and every body dies.
pany with another English gentleman, he paid to the In short, your tragedy would be
noble poet this summer, at his villa on the banks of The very thing to hear and see : And for a piece of publication,
the Brenta. After mentioning the various civilities If I decline on this occasion,
they had experienced from Lord Byron, and, among It is not that I am not sensible
others, his having requested them to name their own To merits in themselves ostensible, But-and I grieve to speak it-plays
day for dining with him,—“We availed ourselves,” Are drugs-mere drugs, sir-now-a days.
says Mr Joy, “ of this considerate courtesy by naming I had a heavy loss by. Manuel,'—
the day fixed for our return to Padua, when our route Too lucky if it prove not annual,
would lead us to his door; and we were welcomed And S * *, with his 'Orestes,
with all the cordiality which was to be expected from (Which, by the by, the author's best is) Has lain so very long on hand
so friendly a bidding. Such traits of kindness in such That I despair of all demand.
a man deserve to be recorded on account of the I've advertised, but see my books,
numerous slanders thrown upon him by some of the Or only watch my shopman's looks ;
tribes of tourists, who resented as a personal affront Still Ivan, Ina, and such lumber, My back-shop glut, my shelves encumber.
his resolution to avoid their impertinent inroads upon “ There 's Byron too, who once did better, his retirement. So far from any appearance of indisHas sent me, folded in a letter,
criminate aversion to his countrymen, his inquiries A sort of-it's no more a drama
about his friends in England (quorum pars magna Than Darnly, Ivan, or Kehama; So alter'd since last year his pen is,
fuisti) were most anxious and particular. I think he's lost his wits at Venice.
“ He expressed some opinions,” continues my In short, sir, what with one and t'other, I dare not venture on another.
informant, on matters of taste, which cannot fail to I write in haste; excuse each blunder;
interest his biographer. He contended that Sculp-
preference which is strikingly illustrated by the fact Pronouncing on the nouns and particles
that, in the fourth Canto of Childe Harold, he gives Of some of our forthcoming Articles.
the most elaborate and splendid account of several « The Quarterly-Ah, sir, if you
statues, and none of any pictures; although Italy is, Had but the genius to review !-A smart critique upon St. Helena,
emphatically, the land of Painting, and her best Or if you only would hut tell in a
statues are derived from Greece. By the way, he Short compass what--but, to resume :
told us that there were more objects of interest in As I was saying, sir, the room
Rome alone than in all Greece from one extremity to
After regaling us with an
excellent dinner (in which, by the by, a very English My humble tenement admits
joint of roast beef showed that he did not extend bis All persons in the dress of gent.,
antipathies to all John-Bullisms), he took me in his From Mr Hammond to Dog Dent. “ A party dines with me to-day,
carriage some miles of our route towards Padua, All elever men, who make their way;
after apologizing to my fellow-traveller for the sepa