LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
Documents Biography Criticism

Astarte: a Fragment of Truth
Lord Byron to Augusta Leigh, 21 December 1820

I. Byron Characteristics
II. Three Stages of Lord Byron’s Life
III. Manfred
IV. Correspondence of Augusta Byron
V. Anne Isabella Byron
VI. Lady Byron’s Policy of Silence
VII. Informers and Defamers
VIII. “When We Dead Awake”
IX. Lady Byron and Mrs. Leigh (I)
X. Lady Byron and Mrs. Leigh (II)
XI. Byron and Augusta
Notes by the Editor
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Ravenna. 10bre 21st 1820.
Dearest Augusta,

Inform Lady B. that I am obliged by her readiness to have Ada taught Music and Italian, according to my wish (when she arrives at the proper period) and that in return I will give her as little trouble as can be avoided upon the subject of her education, tutelage, and guardianship. A Girl is in all cases better with the mother, unless there is some moral objection, and I shall not allow my own private feelings to interfere with what is for the advantage of the Child. She may bring her up in her own way; I am so sensible that a man ought to have nothing to do with such matters, that I shall in another year, either put Allegra (my natural daughter) into a Convent, or send or bring her to England, to put her in some good way of instruction. Tell Lady B. that I have written to her two letters within these three or four months. I do not say this because I desire an answer, for I have no such expectation, but simply that She may know that they have been sent, as the Italian post in these times is always treacherous and sometimes tyrannical enough to suppress letters. Will you for the same reason inform Murray that for six weeks I have had no letters, although for fifty reasons he ought to have written. Either the Post plays false or he is a shabby fellow.

The State of things here is what cannot be described. Not ten days ago the Commandant of the troops was
assasinated at my door, and died as he was being carried into my apartments; he lay on
Fletcher’s bed a corpse for eighteen hours, before the Government ventured to remove him. He was shot in walking home to his barrack at 8 in the Evening. All this is little to what will be—if there is a Neapolitan war. The Italians are right however, they want liberty, and if it is not given, they must take it. What you say of the Queen is of no consequence, it is the state of things which is shewn that imports. I have written and written to Lady B. to get us out of the funds—will she wait till they go? I know more of those things than you or she do, both at home and abroad; and those who live will see strange things.

[Torn off here.]