The Works of Lord Byron. Vol. 2

The Works of Lord Byron. Vol. 2

Author:
Baron George Gordon Byron Byron
Author:
Baron George Gordon Byron Byron
Format:
epub
language:
English

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Author: Byron, George Gordon Byron, Baron, 1788-1824
English poetry
The Works of Lord Byron. Vol. 2


The Works
OF
LORD BYRON.

A NEW, REVISED AND ENLARGED EDITION,
WITH ILLUSTRATIONS.

Poetry. Vol. II.

EDITED BY
ERNEST HARTLEY COLERIDGE, M.A.,
HON. F.R.S.L.

LONDON:
JOHN MURRAY, ALBEMARLE STREET.
NEW YORK: CHARLES SCRIBNER’S SONS.

1899.


TRANSCRIBER’S NOTES

The source code for this HTML page contains only Latin-1 characters, but it directs the browser to display some special characters. The original work contained a few phrases or lines of Greek text. These are represented here as Greek letters, for example Λιακυρα. If the mouse is held still over such phrases, a transliteration in Beta-code pops up. Aside from Greek letters, the only unusual characters are ā (a with macron), ī (i with macron), and ē (e with macron).
An important feature of this edition is its copious notes, which are of three types. Notes indexed with both a number and a letter, for example [4.B.], are end-notes provided by Byron or, following Canto IV, by J. C. Hobhouse. These end-notes follow each Canto.
Both the verse and the end-notes have footnotes, which are indicated by small raised keys in brackets; these are links to the footnote’s text. Footnotes indexed with arabic numbers (e.g. [17], [221]) are informational. Footnotes indexed with letters (e.g. [c], [bf]) document variant forms of the text from manuscripts and other sources.
In the original, footnotes were printed at the foot of the page on which they were referenced, and their indices started over on each page. In this etext, footnotes have been collected following each canto or block of end-notes, and have been numbered consecutively throughout. Text in footnotes and end-notes in square brackets is the work of Editor E. H. Coleridge. Text not in brackets is by Byron or Hobhouse. In certain notes on variant text, the editor showed deleted text struck through with lines, for example deleted words.
Navigation aids are provided as follows. Page numbers are displayed at the right edge of the window. To jump directly to page nn, append #Page_nn to the document URL. To jump directly to the text of footnote xx, either search for [xx] or append #Footnote_xx to the document URL.
Within the blocks of footnotes, numbers in braces such as {321} represent the page number on which following notes originally appeared. These numbers are also preserved as HTML anchors of the form Note_321. To find notes originally printed on page nn, either search for the string {nn} or append #Note_nn to the document URL.


PREFACE TO THE SECOND VOLUME.

The text of the present edition of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage is based upon a collation of volume i. of the Library Edition, 1855, with the following MSS.: (i.) the original MS. of the First and Second Cantos, in Byron’s handwriting [MS. M.]; (ii.) a transcript of the First and Second Cantos, in the handwriting of R. C. Dallas [D.]; (iii.) a transcript of the Third Canto, in the handwriting of Clara Jane Clairmont [C.]; (iv.) a collection of “scraps,” forming a first draft of the Third Canto, in Byron’s handwriting [MS.]; (v.) a fair copy of the first draft of the Fourth Canto, together with the MS. of the additional stanzas, in Byron’s handwriting. [MS. M.]; (vi.) a second fair copy of the Fourth Canto, as completed, in Byron’s handwriting [D.].
The text of the First and Second Cantos has also been collated with the text of the First Edition of the First and Second Cantos (quarto, 1812); the text of the Third and of the Fourth Cantos with the texts of the First Editions of 1816 and 1818 respectively; and the text of the entire poem with that issued in the collected editions of 1831 and 1832.
Considerations of space have determined the position and arrangement of the notes.
Byron’s notes to the First, Second, and Third Cantos, and Hobhouse’s notes to the Fourth Canto are printed, according to precedent, at the end of each canto.
Editorial notes are placed in square brackets. Notes illustrative of the text are printed immediately below the variants. Notes illustrative of Byron’s notes or footnotes are appended to the originals or printed as footnotes. Byron’s own notes to the Fourth Canto are printed as footnotes to the text.
Hobhouse’s “Historical Notes” are reprinted without addition or comment; but the numerous and intricate references to classical, historical, and archæological authorities have been carefully verified, and in many instances rewritten.
In compiling the Introductions, the additional notes, and footnotes, I have endeavoured to supply the reader with a compendious manual of reference. With the subject-matter of large portions of the three distinct poems which make up the five hundred stanzas of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage every one is more or less familiar, but details and particulars are out of the immediate reach of even the most cultivated readers.
The poem may be dealt with in two ways. It may be regarded as a repertory or treasury of brilliant passages for selection and quotation; or it may be read continuously, and with some attention to the style and message of the author. It is in the belief that Childe Harold should be read continuously, and that it gains by the closest study, reassuming its original freshness and splendour, that the text as well as Byron’s own notes have been somewhat minutely annotated.
In the selection and composition of the notes I have, in addition to other authorities, consulted and made use of the following editions of Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage:
i. Édition Classique, par James Darmesteter, Docteur-ès-lettres. Paris, 1882.
ii. Byron’s Childe Harold, edited, with Introduction and Notes, by H. F. Tozer, M.A. Oxford, 1885 (Clarendon Press Series).
iii. Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, edited by the Rev. E.C. Everard Owen, M.A. London, 1897 (Arnold’s British Classics).
Particular acknowledgments of my indebtedness to these admirable works will be found throughout the volume.
I have consulted and derived assistance from Professor Eugen Kölbing’s exhaustive collation of the text of the two first cantos with the Dallas Transcript in the British Museum (Zur Textüberlieferung von Byron’s Childe Harold, Cantos I., II. Leipsic, 1896); and I am indebted to the same high authority for information with regard to the Seventh Edition (1814) of the First and Second Cantos. (See Bemerkungen zu Byron’s Childe Harold, Engl. Stud., 1896, xxi. 176-186.)
I have again to record my grateful acknowledgments to Dr. Richard Garnett, C.B., Dr. A. S. Murray, F.R.S., Mr. R. E. Graves, Mr. E. D. Butler, F.R.G.S., and other officials of the British Museum, for constant help and encouragement in the preparation of the notes to Childe Harold.
I desire to express my thanks to Dr. H. R. Mill, Librarian of the Royal Geographical Society; Mr. J. C. Baker, F.R.S., Keeper of the Herbarium and Library of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; Mr. Horatio F. Brown (author of Venice, an Historical Sketch, etc.); Mr. P. A. Daniel, Mr. Richard Edgcumbe, and others, for valuable information on various points of doubt and difficulty.
On behalf of the Publisher, I beg to acknowledge the kindness of his Grace the Duke of Richmond, in permitting Cosway’s miniature of Charlotte Duchess of Richmond to be reproduced for this volume.
I have also to thank Mr. Horatio F. Brown for the right to reproduce the interesting portrait of “Byron at Venice,” which is now in his possession.
ERNEST HARTLEY COLERIDGE.
April, 1899.


INTRODUCTION TO
THE FIRST AND SECOND CANTOS OF
CHILDE HAROLD.

The First Canto of Childe Harold was begun at Janina, in Albania, October 31, 1809, and the Second Canto was finished at Smyrna, March 28, 1810. The dates were duly recorded on the MS.; but in none of the letters which Byron wrote to his mother and his friends from the East does he mention or allude to the composition or existence of such a work. In one letter, however, to his mother (January 14, 1811, Letters, 1898, i. 308), he informs her that he has MSS. in his possession which may serve to prolong his memory, if his heirs and executors “think proper to publish them;” but for himself, he has “done with authorship.” Three months later the achievement of Hints from Horace and The Curse of Minerva persuaded him to give “authorship” another trial; and, in a letter written on board the Volage frigate (June 28, Letters, 1898, i. 313), he announces to his literary Mentor, R. C. Dallas, who had superintended the publication of English Bards, and Scotch Reviewers, that he has “an imitation of the Ars Poetica of Horace ready for Cawthorne.” Byron landed in England on July 2, and on the 15th Dallas “had the pleasure of shaking hands with him at Reddish’s Hotel, St. James’s Street” (Recollections of the Life of Lord Byron, 1824, p. 103). There was a crowd of visitors, says Dallas, and no time for conversation; but the Imitation was placed in his hands. He took it home, read it, and was disappointed. Disparagement was out of the question; but the next morning at breakfast Dallas ventured to express some surprise that he had written nothing else. An admission or confession followed that “he had occasionally written short poems, besides a great many stanzas in Spenser’s measure, relative to the countries he had visited.” “They are not,” he added, “worth troubling you with, but you shall have them all with you if you like.” “So,” says Dallas, “came I by Childe Harold. He took it from a small trunk, with a number of verses.”
Dallas was “delighted,” and on the evening of the same day (July 16)—before, let us hope, and not after, he had consulted his “Ionian friend,” Walter Rodwell Wright (see Recollections, p. 151, and Diary of H.C. Robinson, 1872, i. 17)—he despatched a letter of enthusiastic approval, which gratified Byron, but did not convince him of the extraordinary merit of his work, or of its certainty of success. It was, however, agreed that the MS. should be left with Dallas, that he should arrange for its publication and hold the copyright. Dallas would have entrusted the poem to Cawthorne, who had published English Bards, and Scotch Reviewers, and with whom, as Byron’s intermediary, he was in communication; but Byron objected on the ground that the firm did not “stand high enough in the trade,” and Longmans, who had been offered but had declined the English Bards, were in no case to be approached. An application to Miller, of Albemarle Street, came to nothing, because Miller was Lord Elgin’s bookseller and publisher (he had just brought out the Memorandum on Lord Elgin’s Pursuits in Greece), and Childe Harold denounced and reviled Lord Elgin. But Murray, of Fleet Street, who had already expressed a wish to publish for Lord Byron, was willing to take the matter into consideration. On the first of August Byron lost his mother, on the third his friend Matthews was drowned in the Cam, and for some weeks he could devote neither time nor thought to the fortunes of his poem; but Dallas had bestirred himself, and on the eighteenth was able to report that he had “seen Murray again,” and that Murray was anxious that Byron’s name should appear on the title-page.
To this request Byron somewhat reluctantly acceded (August 21); and a few days later (August 25) he informs Dallas that he has sent him “exordiums, annotations, etc., for the forthcoming quarto,” and has written to Murray, urging him on no account to show the MS. to Juvenal, that is, Gifford. But Gifford, as a matter of course, had been already consulted, had read the First Canto, and had advised Murray to publish the poem. Byron was, or pretended to be, furious; but the solid fact that Gifford had commended his work acted like a charm, and his fury subsided. On the fifth of September (Letters, 1898, ii. 24, note) he received from Murray the first proof, and by December 14 “the Pilgrimage was concluded,” and all but the preface had been printed and seen through the press.
The original draft of the poem, which Byron took out of “the little trunk” and gave to Dallas, had undergone considerable alterations and modifications before this date. Both Dallas and Murray took exception to certain stanzas which, on personal, or patriotic, or religious considerations, were provocative and objectionable. They were apprehensive, not only for the sale of the book, but for the reputation of its author. Byron fought his ground inch by inch, but finally assented to a compromise. He was willing to cut out three stanzas on the Convention of Cintra, which had ceased to be a burning question, and four more stanzas at the end of the First Canto, which reflected on the Duke of Wellington, Lord Holland, and other persons of less note. A stanza on Beckford in the First Canto, and two stanzas in the second on Lord Elgin, Thomas Hope, and the “Dilettanti crew,” were also omitted. Stanza ix. of the Second Canto, on the immortality of the soul, was recast, and “sure and certain” hopelessness exchanged for a pious, if hypothetical, aspiration. But with regard to the general tenor of his politics and metaphysics, Byron stood firm, and awaited the issue.
There were additions as well as omissions. The first stanza of the First Canto, stanzas xliii. and xc., which celebrate the battles of Albuera and Talavera; the stanzas to the memory of Charles Skinner Matthews, nos. xci., xcii.; and stanzas ix., xcv.,xcvi. of the Second Canto, which record Byron’s grief for the death of an unknown lover or friend, apparently (letter to Dallas, October 31, 1811) the mysterious Thyrza, and others (vide post, note on the MSS. of the First and Second Cantos of Childe Harold), were composed at Newstead, in the autumn of 1811. Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage, quarto, was published on Tuesday, March 10, 1812—Moore (Life, p. 157) implies that the date of issue was Saturday, February 29; and Dallas (Recollections, p. 220) says that he obtained a copy on Tuesday, March 3 (but see advertisements in the Times and Morning Chronicle of Thursday, March 5, announcing future publication, and in the Courier and Morning Chronicle of Tuesday, March 10, announcing first appearance)—and in three days an edition of five hundred copies was sold. A second edition, octavo, with six additional poems (fourteen poems were included in the First Edition), was issued on April 17; a third on June 27; a fourth, with the “Addition to the Preface,” on September 14; and a fifth on December 5, 1812,—the day on which Murray “acquainted his friends” (see advertisement in the Morning Chronicle) that he had removed from Fleet Street to No. 50, Albemarle Street. A sixth edition, identical with the fifth and fourth editions, was issued August 11, 1813; and, on February 1, 1814 (see letter to Murray, February 4, 1814), Childe Harold made a “seventh appearance.” The seventh edition was a new departure altogether. Not only were nine poems added to the twenty already published, but a dedication to Lady Charlotte Harley (“Ianthe”), written in the autumn of 1812, was prefixed to the First Canto, and ten additional stanzas were inserted towards the end of the Second Canto. Childe Harold, as we have it, differs to that extent from the Childe Harold which, in a day and a night, made Byron “famous.” The dedication to Ianthe was the outcome of a visit to Eywood, and his devotion to Ianthe’s mother, Lady Oxford; but the new stanzas were probably written in 1810. In a letter to Dallas, September 7, 1811 (Letters, 1898, ii. 28), he writes, “I had projected an additional canto when I was in the Troad and Constantinople, and if I saw them again, it would go on.” This seems to imply that a beginning had been made. In a poem, a hitherto unpublished fragment entitled Il Diavolo Inamorato (vide post, vol. iii.), which is dated August 31, 1812, five stanzas and a half, viz. stanzas lxxiii. lines 5-9, lxxix., lxxx., lxxxi., lxxxii., xxvii. of the Second Canto of Childe Harold are imbedded; and these form part of the ten additional stanzas which were first published in the seventh edition. There is, too, the fragment entitled The Monk of Athos, which was first published (Life of Lord Byron, by the Hon. Roden Noel) in 1890, which may have formed part of this projected Third Canto.
No further alterations were made in the text of the poem; but an eleventh edition of Childe Harold, Cantos I., II., was published in 1819.
The demerits of Childe Harold lie on the surface; but it is difficult for the modern reader, familiar with the sight, if not the texture, of “the purple patches,” and unattracted, perhaps demagnetized, by a personality once fascinating and always “puissant,” to appreciate the actual worth and magnitude of the poem. We are “o’er informed;” and as with Nature, so with Art, the eye must be couched, and the film of association removed, before we can see clearly. But there is one characteristic feature of Childe Harold which association and familiarity have been powerless to veil or confuse—originality of design. “By what accident,” asks the Quarterly Reviewer (George Agar Ellis), “has it happened that no other English poet before Lord Byron has thought fit to employ his talents on a subject so well suited to their display?” The question can only be answered by the assertion that it was the accident of genius which inspired the poet with a “new song.” Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage had no progenitors, and, with the exception of some feeble and forgotten imitations, it has had no descendants. The materials of the poem; the Spenserian stanza, suggested, perhaps, by Campbell’s Gertrude of Wyoming, as well as by older models; the language, the metaphors, often appropriated and sometimes stolen from the Bible, from Shakespeare, from the classics; the sentiments and reflections coeval with reflection and sentiment, wear a familiar hue; but the poem itself, a pilgrimage to scenes and cities of renown, a song of travel, a rhythmical diorama, was Byron’s own handiwork—not an inheritance, but a creation.
But what of the eponymous hero, the sated and melancholy “Childe,” with his attendant page and yeoman, his backward glances on “heartless parasites,” on “laughing dames,” on goblets and other properties of “the monastic dome”? Is Childe Harold Byron masquerading in disguise, or is he intended to be a fictitious personage, who, half unconsciously, reveals the author’s personality? Byron deals with the question in a letter to Dallas (October 31): “I by no means intend to identify myself with Harold, but to deny all connection with him. If in parts I may be thought to have drawn from myself, believe me it is but in parts, and I shall not own even to that.” He adds, with evident sincerity, “I would not be such a fellow as I have made my hero for all the world.” Again, in the preface, “Harold is the child of imagination.” This pronouncement was not the whole truth; but it is truer than it seems. He was well aware that Byron had sate for the portrait of Childe Harold. He had begun by calling his hero Childe Burun, and the few particulars which he gives of Childe Burun’s past were particulars, in the main exact particulars, of Byron’s own history. He had no motive for concealment, for, so little did he know himself, he imagined that he was not writing for publication, that he had done with authorship. Even when the mood had passed, it was the imitation of the Ars Poetica, not Childe Harold, which he was eager to publish; and when Childe Harold had been offered to and accepted by a publisher, he desired and proposed that

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