Byron eBook

John Nichol
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 239 pages of information about Byron.
that if his lordship died they would take good care the doctors should also; on which the learned men discontinued their visits, and the patient revived.  On his final return to Athens, the restoration of his health was retarded by one of his long courses of reducing diet; he lived mainly on rice, and vinegar and water.  From that city he writes in the early spring, intimating his intention of proceeding to Egypt; but Mr. Hanson, his man of business, ceasing to send him remittances, the scheme was abandoned.  Beset by letters about his debts, he again declares his determination to hold fast by Newstead, adding that if the place which is his only tie to England is sold, he won’t come back at all.  Life on the shores of the Archipelago is far cheaper and happier, and “Ubi bene ibi patria,” for such a citizen of the world as he has become.  Later he went to Malta, and was detained there by another bad attack of tertian fever.  The next record of consequence is from the “Volage” frigate, at sea, June 29, 1811, when he writes in a despondent strain to Hodgson, that he is returning home “without a hope, and almost without a desire,” to wrangle with creditors and lawyers about executions and coal pits.  “In short, I am sick and sorry; and when I have a little repaired my irreparable affairs, away I shall march, either to campaign in Spain, or back again to the East, where I can at least have cloudless skies and a cessation from impertinence.  I am sick of fops, and poesy, and prate, and shall leave the whole Castalian state to Bufo, or anybody else.  Howbeit, I have written some 4000 lines, of one kind or another, on my travels.”  With these, and a collection of marbles, and skulls, and hemlock, and tortoises, and servants, he reached London about the middle of July, and remained there, making some arrangements about business and publication.  On the 23rd we have a short but kind letter to his mother, promising to pay her a visit on his way to Rochdale.  “You know you are a vixen, but keep some champagne for me,” he had written from abroad.  On receipt of the letter she remarked, “If I should be dead before he comes down, what a strange thing it, would be.”  Towards the close of the month she had an attack so alarming that he was summoned; but before, he had time to arrive she had expired, on the 1st of August, in a fit of rage brought on by reading an upholsterer’s bill.  On the way Byron heard the intelligence, and wrote to Dr. Pigot:  “I now feel the truth of Gray’s observation, that we can only have one mother.  Peace be with her!” On arriving at Newstead, all their storms forgotten, the son was so affected that he did not trust himself to go to the funeral, but stood dreamily gazing at the cortege from the gate of the Abbey.  Five days later, Charles S. Matthews was drowned.



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Byron from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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