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With stern and anxious glance gazed back upon
The victim of your guilt; and my first thought
I turn'd, and fled-i' the dark chance rather than
Sieg. And yet I had horrid dreams! and such brief The stars had not gone down when I awoke. [sleep, Why didst thou spare me? I dreamt of my fatherAnd now my dream is out!
'Tis not my fault,
If I have read it. Well! I fled and hid me-
You sought me and have found me-now you know
Sieg. (after a pause).
Indeed! Gab. Is it revenge or justice which inspires Your meditation ?
Neither I was weighing
You shall know it
At once: When you were poor, and I, though poor,
Gab. Not quite. You think me venal, and scarce "Tis no less true, however, that my fortunes [true: Have made me both at present. You shall aid me; I would have aided you—and also have Been somewhat damaged in my name to save Yours and your son's. Weigh well what I have said. Sieg. Dare you await the event of a few minutes' Deliberation ?
Gab. (custs his eyes on ULRIC, who is leaning against a pillar). If I should do so? Sieg. I pledge my life for yours. Withdraw into [Opens a turret door. Gab. (hesitatingly). This is the second safe asylum You have offer'd me.
["Gab. I have yet an additional security- I did not enter Prague a solitary individual; and there are tongues without that will speak for me, although I should even share the fate
Sieg. And was not the first so? Gab. I know not that even now-but will approve The second. I have still a further shield. I did not enter Prague alone; and should I Be put to rest with Stralenheim, there are Some tongues without will wag in my behalf. Be brief in your decision!!
I will be so.—
upon the ground). Take also that.
I saw you eye it eagerly, and him
Gab. (takes up the sabre). I will; and so provide To sell my life. -not cheaply.
[GABOR goes into the turret, which SIEGENDORF closes.
Ay, with half of my domains; And with the other half, could he and thou Unsay this villany.
It is no time
His story's true; and he too must be silenced.
Parricide no less
Than common stabber! What deed of my life,
For family disputes. While you were tortured,
Sieg. Oh! my dead father's curse! 't is working now.
of Stralenheim. Let your deliberation be short."-"Sieg. My promise is solemn, sacred, irrevocable: it extends not, however, beyond these walls."-LEE.]
Which winds its blind but living path beneath you.
At once both warm and weak invites to deeds
He longs to do, but dare not. Is it strange
I would have saved a peasant's or a dog's, I slew
He, you, and I stood o'er a gulf wherein
I have plunged our enemy. You kindled first
I have done with life!
Ulr. Let us have done with that which cankers life
Familiar feuds and vain recriminations
Of things which cannot be undone. We have
Stir not, and speak not; -leave the rest to me;
And yon-my son? My son! mine! who have ever
The Interior of the Turret. GABOR and SIEGENDORF.
Gab. Who calls?
Sieg. I-Siegendorf! Take these, and fly!
Lose not a moment!
[Tears off a diamond star and other jewels, and thrusts them into GABOR's hand.
What am I to do
Must thus redeem it. Fly! I am not master,
Is it even so?
Farewell, then! Recollect, however, Count,
But loiter not in Prague ;-
[Exit GABOR. Sieg. (solus and listening). He hath clear'd the staircase. Ah! I hear The door sound loud behind him! Safe!
-you do not know
Where is the villain?
Are you in quest of?
Of this: he must be found.
Sieg. He's gone.
My fullest, freest aid.
Yes; that's safe still.
He is safe!
[He leans down upon a stone seat, near the wall
Enter ULRIC, with others armed, and with weapons drawn.
Ulr. Despatch !—he's there! Lud. The count, my lord! Ulr. (recognising SIEGENDORF). You here, sir ! Sieg. Yes if you want another victim, strike! Ulr. (seeing him stript of his jewels). Where is the ruffian who hath plunder'd you? Vassals, despatch in search of him! You see 'Twas as I said—the wretch hath stript my father Of jewels which might form a prince's heir-loom! Away! I'll follow you forthwith.
[Exeunt all but SIEGENDORF and ULRIC. What's this?
There are two, sir: which
Let us hear no more
You have not let him
With your connivance ?
Then fare you well! [ULRIC is going. Sieg. Stop! I command-entreat-implore! Oh, Ulric!
Will you then leave me?
What! remain to be
A wretch to profit by our ruin! No, count,
Means my good lord! Sieg.
To a demon!
IN submitting to the public eye the following collection, I have not only to combat the difficulties that writers of verse generally encounter, but may incur the charge of presumption for obtruding myself on the world, when, without doubt, I might be, at my age, more usefully employed.
These productions are the fruits of the lighter hours of a young man who has lately completed his nineteenth year. As they bear the internal evidence of a boyish mind, this is, perhaps, unnecessary information. Some few were written during the disadvantages of
[First published in 1807.]
2 [Isabella, the daughter of William, fourth Lord Byron (great-great uncle of the Poet), became, in 1712, the wife of Henry, fourth Earl of Carlisle, and was the mother of the fifth Earl, to whom this dedication was addressed. This
That you have given birth
Ida. (taking ULRIC's hand). Who shall dare say this of Ulric ?
Hours of Edleness :
A SERIES OF POEMS, ORIGINAL AND TRANSLATED. '
Virginibus puerisque canto.
HORACE, lib. iii. Ode 1.
Μήτ' άς με μάλ' αἴνει, μήτε τι νείκει. — HOMER, Iliad, x. 249.
[IDA falls senseless — JOSEPHINE stands speechless with horror.
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE FREDERICK, EARL OF CARLISLE,
KNIGHT OF THE GARTER, ETC. ETC.
THE SECOND EDITION OF THESE POEMS IS INSCRIBED,
Sieg. The wretch hath slain Them both! My Josephine! we are now alone! Would we had ever been so !- All is over For me!-Now open wide, my sire, thy grave; Thy curse hath dug it deeper for thy son In mine! The race of Siegendorf is past!
[Exit ULRIC. Oh, great God !
BY HIS OBLIGED WARD AND AFFECTIONATE KINSMAN, 2
illness and depression of spirits: under the former influence," CHILDISH RECOLLECTIONS," in particular, were composed. This consideration, though it cannot excite the voice of praise, may at least arrest the arm of censure. A considerable portion of these poems has been privately printed, at the request and for the perusal of my friends. I am sensible that the partial and frequently injudicious admiration of a social circle is not the criterion by which poetical genius is to be estimated, yet, " to do greatly," we must “dare greatly;" and I have hazarded my reputation and feelings in publishing this volume. "I have passed the Rubicon," and must stand or fall by the "cast of
lady was a poetess in her way. The Fairy's Answer to Mrs. Greville's Prayer of Indifference," in Pearch's Collection, is usually ascribed to her.]
3 [This Preface was omitted in the second edition.]
the die." In the latter event, I shall submit without a murmur; for, though not without solicitude for the fate of these effusions, my expectations are by no means sanguine. It is probable that I may have dared much and done little; for, in the words of Cowper," it is one thing to write what may please our friends, who, because they are such, are apt to be a little biassed in our favour, and another to write what may please every body; because they who have no connection, or even knowledge of the author, will be sure to find fault if they can." To the truth of this, however, I do not wholly subscribe: on the contrary, I feel convinced that these trifles will not be treated with injustice. Their merit, if they possess any, will be liberally allowed: their numerous faults, on the other hand, cannot expect that favour which has been denied to others of maturer years, decided character, and far greater ability.
I have not aimed at exclusive originality, still less have I studied any particular model for imitation: some translations are given, of which many are paraphrastic. In the original pieces there may appear a casual coincidence with authors whose works I have been accustomed to read; but I have not been guilty of intentional plagiarism. To produce any thing entirely new, in an age so fertile in rhyme, would be a Herculean task, as every subject has already been treated to its utmost extent. Poetry, however, is not my primary vocation; to divert the dull moments of indisposition, or the monotony of a vacant hour, urged me to this sin:" little can be expected from so unpromising a muse. My wreath, scanty as it must be, is all I shall derive from these productions; and I shall never attempt to replace its fading leaves, or pluck a single additional sprig from groves where I am, at best, an intruder. Though accustomed, in my younger days, to rove a careless mountaineer on the Highlands of Scotland, I have not, of late years, had the benefit of such pure air, or so elevated a residence, as might enable me to enter the lists with genuine bards, who have enjoyed both these advantages. But they derive considerable fame, and a few not less profit, from their productions; while I shall expiate my rashness as an interloper, certainly without the latter, and in all probability with a very slight share of the former. I leave to others "virum volitare per ora." I look to the few who will hear with patience "dulce est desipere in loco." To the former worthies I resign, without repining, the hope of immortality, and content myself with the not very magnificent prospect of ranking amongst "the mob of gentlemen who write; "-my readers must determine whether I dare say "with ease," or the honour of a posthumous page in "The Catalogue of Royal and Noble Authors,". -a work to which the Peerage is under infinite obligations, inasmuch as many names of considerable length, sound, and antiquity, are thereby rescued from the obscurity which unluckily overshadows several voluminous productions of their illustrious bearers.
With slight hopes, and some fears, I publish this
The Earl of Carlisle, whose works have long received the meed of public applause, to which, by their intrinsic worth, they were well entitled.
[The passage referred to by Lord Byron occurs in Boswell's Life of Johnson. vol. vii. p. 91. ed. 1835. Dr. Johnson's letter to Mrs. Chapone, criticising, on the whole favourably, the Earl's tragedy of " The Father's Revenge," is inserted in the same volume, p. 242.]
first and last attempt. To the dictates of young ambition may be ascribed many actions more criminal and equally absurd. To a few of my own age the contents may afford amusement: I trust they will, at least, be found harmless. It is highly improbable, from my situation and pursuits hereafter, that I should ever obtrude myself a second time on the public; nor, even, in the very doubtful event of present indulgence, shall I be tempted to commit a future trespass of the same nature. The opinion of Dr. Johnson on the Poems of a noble relation of mine, "That when a man of rank appeared in the character of an author, he deserved to have his merit handsomely allowed?," can have little weight with verbal, and still less with periodical censors; but were it otherwise, I should be loth to avail myself of the privilege, and would rather incur the bitterest censure of anonymous criticism, than triumph in honours granted solely to a title.
(daughter and grand-daughter of the two Admirals Parker), one of the most beautiful of evanescent beings. I have long forgotten the verse; but it would be difficult for me to forget her- her dark eyes her long eye-lashes her completely Greek cast of face and figure! I was then about twelveshe rather older, perhaps a year. She died about a year or two afterwards, in consequence of a fall, which injured her spine, and induced consumption. Her sister Augusta (by some thought still more beautiful,) died of the same malady; and it was, indeed, in attending her, that Margaret met with the accident which occasioned her death. My sister told me, that when she went to see her, shortly before her death, upon accidentally mentioning my name, Margaret coloured, throughout the paleness of mortality, to the eyes, to the great astonishment of my sister, who knew nothing of our attachment, nor could conceive why my name should affect her at such a time. I knew nothing of her illness-being at Harrow and in the country-till she was gone. Some years after, I made an attempt at an elegy-a very dull one. I do not recollect scarcely any thing equal to the transparent beauty of my cousin, or to the sweetness of her temper, during the short period of our intimacy. She looked as if she had been made out of a rainbow- all beauty and peace." Byron Diary, 1821.]
1 [This little poem, and some others in the collection, refer to a boy of Lord Byron's own age, son of one of his tenants at Newstead, for whom he had formed a romantic attachment, of earlier date than any of his school friendships.]
2 [Lord Delawarr. The idea of printing a collection of his Poems first occurred to Lord Byron in the parlour of that cottage, which, during his visit to Southwell, had become his adopted home. Miss Pigot, who was not before aware of his turn for versifying, had been reading aloud the Poems of Burns, when young Byron said, that he, too, was a poet sometimes, and would write down for her some verses of his own which he remembered." He then, with a pencil, wrote these lines, “To D—.” 4 fac-simile of the first four lines of this pencilling fronts p. 1.]
3 [This poem appears to have been, in its original state, intended to commemorate the death of the same lowly-born youth, to whom the affectionate verses given in the opposite column were addressed:
EPITAPH ON A FRIEND. S
'Αστὴς πρὶν μὲν ἔλαμπες ἑνὶ ζωοῖσιν έος. — LAERTIUS.
Oн, Friend! for ever loved, for ever dear!
"Though low thy lot, since in a cottage born," &c. But, in the altered form of the Epitaph, not only this passage, but every other containing an allusion to the low rank of his young companion, is omitted; while, in the added parts, the introduction of such language as
"What though thy sire lament his failing line,"
seems calculated to give an idea of the youth's station in life, wholly different from that which the whole tenour of the original Epitaph warrants. "That he grew more conscious,' says Mr. Moore," of his high station, as he approached to manhood, is not improbable, and this wish to sink his early friendship with the young cottager may have been a result of that feeling." The following is a copy of the lines as they first appeared in the private volume:
"Oh, Boy! for ever loved, for ever dear!
What fruitless tears have bathed thy honour'd bier!
To me, far dearer was thy artless love
Than all the joys wealth, fame, and friends could prove: