LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Lady Morgan’s Memoirs
Chapter XIX

Vol. I Contents.
Prefatory Address
Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter VI
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII
Chapter IX
Chapter X
Chapter XI
Chapter XII
Chapter XIII
Chapter XIV
Chapter XV
Chapter XVI
Chapter XVII
Chapter XVIII
Chapter XIX
Chapter XX
Chapter XXI
Chapter XXII
Chapter XXIII
Chapter XXIV
Chapter XXV
Chapter XXVI
Chapter XXVII
Chapter XXVIII
Chapter XXIX
Chapter XXX
Chapter XXXI
Chapter XXXII
Chapter XXXIII
Chapter XXXIV
Chapter XXXV
Chapter XXXVI
Chapter XXXVII
Vol. I Index
Vol. II Contents
Chapter I
Chapter II
Chapter III
Chapter IV
Chapter V
Chapter IV
Chapter VII
Chapter VIII
Chapter IX
Chapter X
Chapter XI
Chapter XII
Chapter XIII
Chapter XIV
Chapter XV
Chapter XVI
Chapter XVII
Chapter XVIII
‣ Chapter XIX
Chapter XX
Chapter XXI
Chapter XXII
Chapter XXIII
Chapter XXIV
Chapter XXV
Chapter XXVI
Chapter XXVII
Chapter XXVIII
Chapter XXIX
Chapter XXX
Chapter XXXI
Chapter XXXII
Chapter XXXIII
Chapter XXXIV
Chapter XXXV
Chapter XXXVI
Chapter XXXVII
Chapter XXXIX
Chapter XL
Vol. II Index
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Scribbling all day; called down to the drawing-room at near five o’clock. “It’s Counsellor Curran, my lady!” Morgan, invalided, came up enchanted to see his friend Curran, though they are at the antipodes of human feeling—my own Morgan being all heart, &c.

Morgan said, “Curran, we are quite alone, do stay and dine with us.”

(Now this is a most unfair thing in husbands—this asking to dinner à l’impromptu, particularly a man like Curran, who likes a good dinner). Clever Curran, who knows all the little plis et replis in the human character better than the great, looked hesitatingly at me. I laughed, and said, “It is not fair to take you in; we are invalids; our dinner is an invalid dinner; soupe, bouilli and a roast fowl, except we order up the kitchen pièce de résistance—but I dare not mention it.”

“If it is not a leg of beef smothered in onions,” said Curran, laughing.


“No; but is almost as bad—a leg of pork and pease-pudding,” said I.

Quoth he, “The thing in the world I like best.” So he ran home to dress, stipulating we should let him off the moment we had dined (an old trick of his); but I chose to make the agreeable, so did he, and he staid with us, en tiers, till midnight. He was, as he can always be, most clever, amusing, and rational. He gave us anecdotes and imitations of Steele, the Catholic demagogue, admirably, particularly his whacking the editor of the Morning Herald three several times, each time observing, “There! I don’t think I had complete satisfaction!”

We talked of the good, but coarse Irish novel, The Collegians. The story is a fact, and not only a fact, but the trial of the hero, and the whole melancholy event, was given by Curran in the New Monthly Magazine, just after it happened—in much finer style than in the Collegians. The hero was a Mr. Scanlan, a dissipated young man in the county of Limerick; his family are what the peasants call, “small gentry,” we, “gentry.” His uncle, Mr. Scanlan, was High Sheriff last year; Curran dined with him the day of the hero’s execution. Curran said the uncle’s sang-froid and indifference were frightful; he shrugged his shoulders, tucked his napkin under his chin, said “it was a sad business,” and called for soup. In this, one may discern the same temperament as in the nephew, the murderer.

The fair, frail girl, whom this Munster Lothario
had seduced, robbed her uncle of eighty pounds at his suggestion—satiety and avarice were his motives to murder her. She had given him forty pounds, he wanted the rest, and to get rid of her.

When he had sent her off in the boat with his servant, who was first to shoot and then fling her into the Shannon, he lurked about the shore waiting his return. To his dismay, he saw the party row back—she, all smiles and fondness, extending her arms to him. The servant, taking him aside, said, “I cannot kill her! Sure, when I had the pistol raised, she turned round with her innocent face, and smiled so in mine; I could not hurt a hair of her head, the crathur.”

Scanlan took him to a public-house; primed him with whiskey, gave him a fresh bribe, and sent him off once more, with his victim, to sail on the Shannon—waited his return on the shore, and saw him come back without her.

The other anecdote was this:—The jailor of Limerick had been an old and confidential servant in the Scanlan family, and had nursed this young man on his knee.

When the moment of execution arrived, and he knelt down to knock off the irons, his tears dropped on every link, and looking up in the young man’s face, said, “Ah, Masther John! when I nursed you in these arms, in your father’s house, little ever I thought this would be the office I should do for you.”

Scanlan died with a lie on his lips, denying the crime. He had been condemned on the strongest circumstantial
evidence; but shortly after his death, the servant, who had murdered the girl at his command, was taken up for another murder and hanged. He gave every link that was wanted in the chain of evidence, and related the whole story a little before his execution.

The Prima Sera, as the Italians call it, is very agreeable. It begins immediately after dinner, or siesta; it includes the drive on the Corso, and the visit before the Opera. We have a prima sera that is suited to our climate and is very agreeable. It has the freedom of evening society with the sociability of morning visits. I mean the two hours which intervene between the fall of evening at four o’clock, and the dressing or dinner-hour—the hour when the pleasant visitors drop in—when the fire burns brightest, and the lamps are few, and one is still in one’s morning-dress, and men put their splashed boots, without let or hinderance, where an hour or two afterwards it would be outlawry to appear in clean ones [shoes were, at that period, de rigueur in the evening], and the feet are put on the fender, and the shoulders find a resting-place in the luxurious arm-chair. The news comes fresh in from the ride or the club; the anecdote is still new from the ball or the soirée, where nothing is presumed and everything is ventured; when the story of the diner-out is not yet made, nor the sally of the professed wit held back for à apropos; when one talks nonsense best and laughs at it most. It is enough to know there is an epoch of the day when one may be agreeable without stimulus, and enjoy without effort.


17th January.—Just heard of the death of Sir Thomas Lawrence and of Mr. Monkton, Lady Cork’s brother.

January 20.—Yesterday we dined at Lord Dungarvon’s, at Fairfield. Our party, Marquis and Marchioness Clanricarde, Earl and Countess of Howth, Lady E. St. Lawrence, Master Townsend and his daughter, Mr. Blake (Chief Remembrancer) and his wife; Colonel Cruise, and Dan O’Connell; this being the second time in my life that I ever met the redoubtable Dan. Dan is not brilliant in private society,—not even agreeable. He is mild, silent, unassuming, apparently absorbed, and an utter stranger to the give-and-take charm of good society; I said so to Lord Clanricarde, who replied, “If you knew how I found him this morning; his hall, and the very steps of his door crowded with his clientèle—he had a word or a written order for each and all, and then hurried off to the law courts, and from that to the Improvement Society, at the Royal Exchange, and was the first guest here to-day, when I arrived. Two hours before, he was making that clever but violent speech to Mr. La Touche, and now no wonder he looks like an extinct volcano.”

Lady Clanricarde is the only and much-loved daughter of Canning, and is quite worthy of being so, quelle tête, inside and outside! beautiful and clever, every word an epigram or a thought, pleasant and amusing with it all! The dinner was charming, with sweet Lady Dungarvon’s warm, cordial manner of doing the honors in her own pretty house. I had lots of Irish shanaos
(Anglice, gossip), with these first-rate Irishmen.
Lord Clanricarde told us of the burning down of his beautiful castle.

Feb. 28th.—Poor Molly! I cannot drive her or her situation out of my head. She is dying, but well cared for at my dear sister’s.

Molly, as the reader may recollect, was the old nurse; one of the heroines of Lady Morgan’s autobiography. She retained to the last her fine Irish black head of hair, and a few teeth as white as ever. She had become very exigeante and rather given to whiskey in her declining years; but she was still a specimen of a faithful retainer as distinguished from modern servants.

April 28th.—Joseph Lefanu, son of Sheridan’s excellent sister, my old, kind friend, came to-day. It is the wreck of a dear old friendship. His visit to Kildare Street marks an epoch; he is broken down in health and spirits,—a premature old age. Dublin is a tomb to him,—all his friends dead. He spent the evening with us, and we gave up going to the birth-night to stay with him. The tint of intellect over all he says is very Lefanu-ish; he told me an anecdote of his uncle Sheridan missing a legacy of ten thousand pounds from a point of honour, refusing to go and see a man in his last illness lest he should suppose he was actuated by mercenary motives. I said, I believe that anecdote is in Moore’s Life of Sheridan. “Oh, no,” he replied, bitterly, “this is authentic!”

The following is an interesting notice of an excellent
actress and good woman, who still lives warm in the memory of all who knew her, and who will always be a name of mark in the annals of the English stage.

Miss Huddart (Mrs. Warner) was associated with the best efforts of Macready and Mr. Phelps to renew the drama and render the stage all that in certain conditions of society it is capable of becoming as a powerful engine for good.

Lady Charleville to Lady Morgan.
My dear Lady Morgan,

I beg to offer you and your nieces my tickets for Miss Huddart’s benefit; she is the meritorious and amiable daughter of a lady of real merit, who was well known to me, and moved in the best society, at one time in Dublin. I am told this young actress is very promising, and I can only answer for her being the best of daughters, and having met with the heaviest affliction lately by the loss of her father.

A show of patronage from persons of talent would do much for a debutante, and I know you will lend yourself for a few hours to serve this friendless young creature on my account.

I beg Sir Charles to join you, and write me a few lines with your opinion of her. If I could have gone to Dublin to wait on the Duchess of Northumberland, I should have been happy to have taken a box and gone to see this young creature, for her mother’s sake, but four deaths have shadowed over my thoughts for some time, and left me no joyous fancies for the present. I hope the saints may not shut up the theatre,
for it is literally true that I dare not speak of going to a play to the few I am acquainted with in Dublin of my lord’s family.

I know how pleased you must be with the Relief Bill, and I trust in God it may promote general prosperity in this country.

C. M. Charleville.

The reader will not have forgotten Mr. Wallace, the old friend and correspondent of Lady Morgan. His wife, who had long been an invalid, died some time previous to Lady Morgan’s marriage, and whether Mr. Wallace had himself been a pretender to her favour, or whether, without having made any declaration of his intentions, he still felt aggrieved that another should be preferred before him, there is no evidence to tell; but the acquaintance ceased after Lady Morgan’s marriage. He was now a second time married; and the following note is endorsed by Lady Morgan:—“Mr. Wallace sent this note on the 27th, 1830, after an interruption of friendship from the year 1811.” The month is not mentioned, but it was about this period.

Thomas Wallace to Lady Morgan.
Monday Morning.
My dear Lady Morgan,

I was greatly mortified yesterday at finding you and Sir Charles had called at Belfield, and departed
without asking for me. I was at home, and should have been very much gratified indeed to have seen you and him, meaning as you did such very kind things towards us. Of those kind intentions I most cheerfully shall avail myself, and shall participate gladly in the hospitable and spirituel gratifications which are always, I know, of olden time, to be found with you and in the society which you select.

Mrs. W. will wait upon you.

Yours most truly,
Thomas Wallace.

May 20th.—Off to-day for Shangana and my dear General Cockburn. I am breaking down again under close air and want of exercise. Morgan, I declare, loves me very well, but not well enough to break through his usual habits of indolence, so he don’t walk, and hates driving,—so I have no resource.

May 30th.—Returned home the 27th—Shangana is a divine spot! how I enjoyed its scenes! I used to reproach the General for leaving it in these very words—

“Oh, how canst thou renounce the boundless store
Of charms which nature to her votary yields,
The warbling woodland, the meandering shore,
The pomp of groves, the garniture of woods;
All that the genial ray of morning gilds,
And all that colours to the song of even,
All that the mountain’s sheltering bosom yields,
And all the dread magnificence of heaven;
Oh, how canst thou renounce and be forgiven?”

Gray says, “this of all others is my favourite stanza; it is true feeling, it is inspiration!” How can I “hope
to be forgiven?”—saying this at the grove every day as I returned from my walk before breakfast, when I yielded to a vice-regal mandate, and came back to town for the fête of the king’s birthday at the park! It was, however, a splendid scene. I had a deal of funny chat with the
lord-lieutenant; what made it most droll was that two orange bishops were looking on; here was part of our talk—

Quoth I, “Lord Anglesey! some admire you as lord-lieutenant, some for your heroism, but I admire you for—

Lord A. “What, Lady Morgan? pray shock us!”

Lady M. “For the cut of your coat; who is your tailor? or is all this your own order?”

Lord A. (laughing) “Oh, I never give an order, I have an old model coat, the great great grandfather of this; I always say ‘make it like this coat,’ that is all my order.”

Lady M. “The fact is, you dress better than any one, et je m’y connais bien!

Lord A. “Well! I did dress well when I was young, so well, that my early and kindest friend, the late king, did me the honour to enter the lists with me; I remember his saying, at a ball at Devonshire House, ‘There is that d——d Paget, better dressed than ever.’ He went further than this. One day I went to Carlton House, by appointment; we were to go together, the prince and I, to some morning fête, I forget where. I had waited some time in the drawing-room, when a groom of the chambers put in his head, looked earnestly at me, and retired. Presently the
valet of H. R. H. put in his head, stared, and retired. I began to get a little impatient, when a page entered, walked round, and followed the other two. The prince then made his appearance, dressed exactly like myself! I heard afterwards that he was dressed when I arrived, and had sent to see how I was dressed, successively changing every article, till he was told he was my double! All this now appears ridiculous, but then it was tout de bon.”

Lady M. “I don’t think he would have taken your excellency now as a model in anything.”

Lord A. “No, he hated me, at least, he could never forgive me my conduct in Ireland. I grieved at this, for up to my first Irish vice-royalty, he was the kindest of the kind, and I loved him much.”

Lady M. “Well, but to go back to the toilette, don’t you think one gets more soigné as one gets older?”

Lord A. “I really think one does; in fact, one owes it to society to make amends for the defects of time; we ought to shock the younger world as little as possible.”

Morgan joined us, and we got into politics.

Lord A—— said, “Much has been done in the way of reform, but the Tories must swallow more yet, the Church establishment must retrench. If those gentlemen would save anything, they must give up much. If the king had lived a year longer, you would have had a revolution, nothing could have stopped it.”

June 17.—Off to Lyons.

June 27.—Returned from Lyons—Lord Cloncurry’s,
a long, large party—the first day good—
Sheil, Curran, and Jack Lattan. I never saw him in such force; he thanked me with all the gallantry and enthusiasm of youth for my allusion to him in the Book of the Boudoir. “Forty years back,” he said, “it would have driven me mad, and even now it makes my head turn.” His brilliancy overwhelmed all the wit present; Sheil was silent, and Curran dull. All sat staring and listening. He is part of a bygone generation,—his wit was, perhaps, trop fort. His wit put me in mind of poor Grassini singing in Paris last year,—it would be invidious to say why. After all, Lord Cloncurry is the drollest of the droll, he makes me laugh more than any one. We had the Jocelyn, Percys, and others very charming. Lord Cloncurry made me die, by the simple way he told me that when the Duke of Northumberland was coming to stay a few days at Maritimo, he said to Lord Cloncurry, “Do not put yourself to any inconvenience for my people, (his servants), they never drink either port or claret.” “Upon my word,” said Lord Cloncurry, “I am very glad to hear it, for with me they will only get very small beer.”

July 1st.—I had a few people last evening,—my own family, Curran, General Cockburn, and the ex-judge Johnson; Johnson is a fine specimen of the old wit, talent, and literary condition of Ireland. He was the intimate friend of the celebrated Curran, to whose son he is much attached. Though eighty-five years of age his conversation is full of force, humour, and gallantry, scarcely a trace of age. He told me in the morning
he should give up a dinner-party and box at the theatre to come to us.

Captain Arthur Wellesley (the Duke of Wellington’s nephew) dropped in. In the course of the evening Johnson told him an anecdote of his illustrious uncle that amused him.

“I dined,” he said, “about forty years ago with old Colonel Ross, of Gloucester Street, Dublin; Ross’s nephew, a college boy, (the late General Ross,) dined with us; in the middle of dinner, a little aide de camp, a playfellow of Ross’s, came in. They amused each other at dinner with running pins into each other, and made such a noise that the old Colonel, starting up, cried, “G—d d—n it, boys, if you cannot be quiet, go out into the yard and play ball, but don’t disturb the dinner.” The boys, were the Duke of Wellington and General Ross.

Judge Johnson was a judge who was prosecuted for a seditious libel; it was an attack on Lord Hardwicke, when lord-lieutenant of Ireland (published in Cobbett’s Register), at the moment when he had a seat on the Bench. The jury found him guilty of the libel; but an opportune change of ministry between the verdict and the sentence, allowed a nolle prosequi to be entered. He retired from the Bench, on a pension, in 1806. He had a most unprofessional taste for military affairs, and held some peculiar theories; amongst others, that pikes and arrows were better weapons than muskets or bayonets; and he prided himself on having invented a pike with a hollow staff, to contain arrows,
and a leg to support the weapon, and side traces to unite it with others, so as to form a chevaux-de-frise!!

July 5th.—Left town on Friday for Morris Town, the seat of Jack Lattan, County Kildare; he carried us off vi et armis in his old French calèche, with his old French horses, and his French cook driving us. He comes yearly from his hotel in the chaussée d’Antin to his old seat in the Bog of Allan; what a transit! As we passed that vast ruin, the palace built by Lord Stafford, near Naas, (one of the items in his indictment), he pointed to a field under the window of the ruin. “There,” he said, “begins my estate, we held it under King John, and never lost or added an acre; we must have been very mediocre people.” Lord Stafford, in one of his letters, describing this palace as having been built with the hope of having the king’s majesty his guest, observes, “My close neighbour is one Lattan, an Irish Papist.” The Wentworth property is now Lord Fitzwilliam’s. The traditions of this country are all in Lord Stafford’s favour, he did no violent things here. Lattan said his memory fatigued him by its redundance. What myriads of anecdotes! Here is a funny one. The Duc de Laval said to him, one day, on the subject of England—“Ecoutez mon cher, je connais l’Angleterre au fond, les fils ainés sont tous riches et ivrognes, les cadets sont pauvres et volent sur le grand chemin!”

Lord Cloncurry in his Life and Times, mentions Mr. Lattan having been in the French service, 1793; he describes him as one of a race, now extinct; a
genuine Irishman, in heart and purpose; his service in France, as an officer in the Irish brigade, had added the polish and gallantry of a French gentleman, while his manly figure was set off in full perfection by the air and habits of a soldier of the old school. The brilliancy of his wit was never clouded, nor his enjoyment of present mirth ever damped by thoughts of to-morrow. When his purse was full, he drew upon it without scruple, for self or friends, and when it was empty he would sit down to translate the
Henriade, to help an émigré friend with the proceeds of its publication.

French Revolution.

September 5th.—Since I last scribbled in these pages, what events! I have lived in them, for them, and with them, even at this distance from the scene of action! My life, made up of sensations, will be found in the postscript of my new France, the publication of which was retarded for the purpose of inserting it. I shall not say a word of this great subject here.

September 8.—The arrival of Moore and his family has fait epoch. We had to meet him at dinner yesterday,—North, Sheil, Curran, and my own family; all his old cronies in the evening, and his old love, Mrs. Smith, to whom he addressed the song “If in the dream that hovers.” He sang as well as ever, but it made us all sad; all he sang had reference to the past. I felt when I went to bed as if I had been at the funeral of old friends.


Moore refers to this dinner in his diary, September 7, 1830. “Desperate wet day; dined at Lady Morgan’s—company, Edward Moore, North, Curran, Sheil, the Clarkes.”

Great delay about the appearance of my book, it takes six days to receive and return each proof sheet. It ought to come out to-morrow.

The second France was published on the 7th of September, 1830. It is in every respect superior to the first, except that the continent having now been open for fourteen years, the present work had not the peculiar zest of novelty. To the present generation of readers, however, the France of 1829-30 belongs as completely to a time gone by as the Gaul of the days of Cæsar. France of 1829-30 is a very brilliant book, and it is not so flippant as its predecessor. There is much less self glorification about social flatteries and attentions; Lady Morgan had become more accustomed to such things, and her own position in society was both higher and better defined. The points where she produces herself in the present work, are precisely those on which her own sympathies and associations appeal to the reader, and give a special interest to the topic in hand. Each chapter makes a charming feuilleton, abounding in wit and shrewd observation. If we had to point out the work in which Lady Morgan has given herself and her peculiar genius the fairest play and the fullest development, we should take our stand upon her second work on France.


The political and social shades of society in France immediately previous to the revolution of 1830, “the three glorious days” which have now passed into oblivion along with much other “pomp and glory of the world,” are caught like a rainbow at the brightest moment. The men and women of the time,—the politics, the pictures, the music, the drama, the shrines of historical interest and of social associations—may be seen as in a magic mirror. The chapter on the drama brings back the faint echoes of names which in our youths filled the public ear. When Mademoiselle Leontine Fay was the young, handsome, charming jeune première of the Théâtre de Madame, “drawing fastfalling, unconscious tears and half-stifled sobs from all Paris in the Mariage d’Inclination;” and when Dumas’ Henri III. was a new piece, with Mademoiselle Mars for its heroine, Rossini is spoken of as “overwhelmed with his professional labours,” putting the finish to his William Tell, which had been for the last two months the topic of conversation and expectation in the musical world of fashion. The chapter on romanticists and classists is very amusing. Lamartine, Victor Hugo, St. Beuve, were then faisant leurs épreuves, and are noticed as new authors. The chapter on modern literature contains some excellent criticism and sound remarks. The chapter called “Mornings at Paris” is a charming resumé of people and things. Names appear on each page with a personal sketch or a mot, which makes the reader at once of their society. There is a visit to Beranger in the prison of La Force; and there are two memorable dinners; one at the Comte de
Segur’s, with a record of the conversation as fresh and as amusing as if it were not on topics half a century old; the other is a dinner at Baron Rothschild’s, dressed by the great Carême, who had erected a column of the most ingenious confectionery architecture, on which he had inscribed Lady Morgan’s name in spun sugar. What woman would not have been flattered by such a tribute! The chapter on The Archives of France contains a lively account of her pilgrimage to shrines, dear from historical associations, but not set down in any guide book, and disappearing under the march of imperial improvement. It would be impossible to give a detailed criticism on these two charming volumes, but we would advise our readers in their own interest to send for them, instead of “something new from Mudie.” The chapters by Sir C. Morgan consist of articles on philosophy, public journals, primogeniture, and public opinion. They are good, and the conscientious opinions of a man whose indorsement is worthy of respect.

This work was, however, destined to cause Lady Morgan more trouble and annoyance than she met with in the whole of literary life put together. It made an event in Lady Morgan’s life, and was in itself a curious illustration of the laws and customs of the republic of letters, as it existed in the year of grace, 1830.

Sir Charles and Lady Morgan had gone to France entirely propria motu, without any bargain or understanding with any bookseller.

On their return, Lady Morgan set to work to write
her scenes find impression.
Colburn took it for granted that she neither could nor would leave him for any other publisher; he considered that Lady Morgan was bound to him in literary matrimony for better and worse, and he behaved to her with a cool security which was not altogether suited to her character. She wrote to tell him she was writing a second work on France. Colburn, who was always in arrears with his correspondence, did not reply. Lady Morgan wrote again, and as her letter produced no answer beyond a lazy request to be told the size, title, and topics of the new work, with no definite offer. Lady Morgan then opened a negociation with Messrs. Saunders and Otley, just, as years before, when Sir R. Phillips refused, in the matter of the Wild Irish Girl, to give the price she demanded, she wrote to Johnson, a rival publisher, as the reader may remember. She wrote again to Colburn to tell him what she had done. Mr. Colburn wrote an indignant letter to Sir Charles Morgan, July 4, 1830, the very handwriting of which testifies to his rage at her ladyship having opened a correspondence with another house:—“I can only now say, that if Lady Morgan does not break off the negociation (which is simply done on the plea of a misunderstanding) it will be no less detrimental to her literary than to her pecuniary interest. As to myself, it is a very different feeling, and not my pecuniary interest that makes me urge this matter, as I can prove, if necessary, I have lost considerably by the last two or three works; but I am ready, and always have been, to give Lady Morgan
more than the value of her works when I know what I am to bid for—pray recollect, that Lord Byron used to send his works to
Murray without hesitation.”

This sourde threat was not likely to intimidate an intrepid woman like Lady Morgan, who had stood fire so many years, and who loved a fight like a true Milesian. The bargain with Messrs. Saunders and Otley was concluded, The terms were to be a thousand pounds for the copyright; five hundred pounds to be paid down on the publication of the work, the other five hundred by four bills at different dates.

The work was published in two volumes, the type and paper were unexceptionable, the appearance of the volumes was handsome, and a spirited portrait of her ladyship, as a frontispiece. The first payment was duly made—and then—there came a full stop! The new work by Lady Morgan instead of being received with a lively sensation as usual, encountered a dead silence. Messrs. Saunders and Otley writing to Lady Morgan, September 23, 1830, say, “In reply to your inquiry respecting the sale of the work, we are sorry to say it has been anything but encouraging; the booksellers having taken very sparingly, and we have had but a small demand, although much had been previously done in the way of advertising, &c., the effect of which must, no doubt, have been greatly impeded by the opposing system practised. The notice in the Chronicle, slight and incidental as it is, is the most favourable that has yet appeared. A system of indiscriminate censure appears to pervade all others, while the more influential remain silent.”


Colburn had proved what he could be as a friend, and he was now showing what he could be as a foe. Not only was he enraged at losing “one of his authors,”—his favourite one, too, but he was also exasperated at the audacity of any other publishers in entering into competition with him, and he proceeded to let them see how he could punish them, and to teach Lady Morgan that her success had been less owing to her own genius than to his own skill as a publisher.

“The opposing system,” referred to in the letter from Messrs. Saunders and Otley was a series of manœuvres and advertisements by Colburn, on the announcement of the new work by Lady Morgan on France. The newspapers of the day appeared with this advertisement—LADY MORGAN AT HALF PRICE. The advertisement stated that in consequence of the great losses which he had sustained by Lady Morgan’s former works, Mr. Colburn had declined this present book on France, and that all the copies of her books might be had at half price. Nothing more insulting to Lady Morgan or more damaging to the success of the new work, could have been contrived. Sir Charles and Lady Morgan were powerless to combat this state of things; and Messrs. Saunders and Otley wrote more and more piteously about their own loss, entreating to have a modification of their contract. They proposed to give up their copyright, to receive back their bills for the second five hundred pounds, and to bring out a second edition (so called) of the twelve hundred copies on hand, Lady Morgan sharing the profits.

Lady Morgan offered to give them an extension of
time, but declined to let them off their bargain, saying, that a contract was a contract. Her second edition, as it was called, answered no better than the first; and Messrs.
Saunders and Otley were losers upon every item,—printing, paper, advertisements, &c., in addition to the five hundred pounds in cash they had paid to Lady Morgan, and the further sum for which they were liable. Sir Charles and Lady Morgan obtained Counsel’s opinion as to the chance of making Colburn amenable for his proceedings. Mr. Wallace, Q.C. (Lady Morgan’s old lover,) gave it as his opinion that a case would lie against him, as it could be proved he had used threats; but Saunders and Otley did not choose to send good money after bad, and declined a lawsuit. After a tedious correspondence, which extended over a year, they declared their intention, on the 1st of September, 1831, to go to law to get their contract cancelled. Eventually, the whole affair came into court. The curious and peculiar feature in the case was, Colburn’s own admission that he had been so enraged at losing Lady Morgan’s work, that he had done everything he could to injure her literary reputation, and to damage the sale of Messrs. and Otley’s publication; that he much regretted what he had done under the influence of wounded feeling; and he took that opportunity of retracting whatever he had said in her disparagement. Speaking of his magazines, he said that he paid his other contributors according to a fixed tariff; but that to Sir C. and Lady Morgan he gave whatever price they demanded. Lady Morgan, in relating this his-
tory, always said, that Colburn behaved like an angry lover seeking a reconciliation with his mistress. The matter was at length arranged; Colburn made some proposal that satisfied Messrs. and Otley. But Lady Morgan was not to be so easily appeased. She was sorry to have been the cause of loss and annoyance to Messrs. and Otley, instead of the goddess of good fortune, which she had hitherto been to all. To compensate in some degree to them, and to show that she was perfectly satisfied with their conduct, she allowed them to publish
Dramatic Scenes and Sketches from Real Life. But neither did they make this work answer as a literary speculation. We shall speak of it in its proper place.

Thomas Campbell was at this period the editor of Mr. Colburn’s magazine, the New Monthly. Being the friend of Lady Morgan and of her husband, he was naturally in an embarrassing position, for at this time the quarrel between Colburn and Lady Morgan was at its bitterest. The following letter shows that he did his best to act uprightly towards all parties.

Thomas Campbell to Lady Morgan.
Middle Scotland Yard,
September 8th, 1830.
My dear Lady Morgan,

I write to you under the depression of a most miserable bad cold, but so impatient am I to communicate the sum and substance of what I have to say,
that I was determined not to delay my answer till the cloudy atmosphere of head should clear up.

The sum and substance is, that dexterous as the little man is, he will be cleverer than even himself at mischief, if he contrives to make the New Monthly a vehicle for his further malignity towards you. I will watch every sheet and sentence that goes to press, and nothing, with my permission, shall go to press that is in the least disrespectful to you.

If I followed the impulse of my own feelings, I should not limit myself to negative conduct in this business. You may easily imagine what I think of Colburn’s conduct to you. It shocked and disgusted me when I heard of it, and, moreover, it astounded me, for his conduct to myself has, on the whole, been very fair and liberal. I thought him incapable of such an action as the advertisement, and if he ever enters upon the subject with me, I will tell him my mind in the strongest reprehensive terms. But my interests are, unfortunately, for the present, involved with his, and I have disagreeable subjects enough to discuss with him without entering on that point. On this, however, you may rely, that he shall not get the New Monthly to be an engine of his hostility.

God knows when I may be able to accomplish my long-thought-of jaunt to the Emerald Isle. I trust, however, ere long, to see you or Sir Charles, or both of you, on this side of the Channel; you will surely visit us this year. Here you will find me in a far more liveable part of London than I lived in before, which was so remote that it almost kept me out of
society. I am now within a bow-shot of what
Dr. Johnson called the full tide of human existence at Charing Cross. I beg my best regards to Sir Charles, and not forgetting to congratulate you both on the late glorious events,

I remain, my dear Lady Morgan,
With respect and regard,
Yours truly,
T. Campbell.

September 17th.—Moore brought a delightful man to us yesterday, the fashionable wit, Luttrell, of the Lady Cork and Charleville set, and author of the Advice to Julia. The moment Moore got in, he tried, as usual, to get out. Morgan said, “I beg pardon for the proposition, but do sit down if you can.” “Oh, you have found him out” said Luttrell; “I have rarely seen him stay so long anywhere.” He got upon the public journals: Luttrell said the Court Journal was the standard of bad taste, and cited its calling Lady Londonderry “our own Emily.” Talking of Hazlitt, my old critic, and of his special dirtiness, Moore told the anecdote of Charles Lamb, saying to him when they were playing cards nearly as dirty as his hands, “Hazlitt, if dirt were trumps, what a fine hand you would have!” Our wits belong to the last century.

My husband wished to get up a dinner for Moore, at his club, here is his answer:—

Thomas Moore to Sir Charles Morgan.
September 10th, 1830.
My dear Morgan,

I need not say to you how much I feel both the honour and kindness of the invitation which you propose to me, but the fact is, my mind is now wholly set upon getting away as soon and as safely as these equinoctial breezes will let me. Having the nervous task of transporting women and children, at this time of the year, either by Bristol or Liverpool, I am preparing to take advantage of the very first appearance of more settled weather, and, therefore, could not form any engagement that would be likely to interfere with this purpose, nor, indeed, enjoy it at all as I ought, if I did form it. It is my intention, however, to be here again before the end of next spring, and then (if my kind friends of the Dawson Street Club continue still in the same disposition towards me) it will give me the most sincere pleasure to accept their invitation. I write in a hurry, but you will, I know, have the kindness to convey all this to them in a way that will best do justice to my feelings, and believe me,

Ever, my dear Morgan,
Most truly yours,
Thomas Moore.

Moore mentions this dinner in his diary, and says, “It is the third dinner that has been in contempla-
tion for me, one of them being a mob feast at six shillings a head, which Jack Lawless wants to get up for me.”

October 29th.—O’Gorman Mahon is not a charlatan, but a mountebank—a mountebank on wire. When asked to dine at the chief secretary’s, the other day, he arrived when dinner was nearly over, in a chaise and four horses, two postilions, &c., &c., and entering the room, where he was an utter stranger, exclaimed, on seeing Sheil at the further end of the dinner table, “Ah! ah! my little friend, so you are here!” my blood ran cold, thinking what would come next. I blush for my countrymen.

November 23rd.—A delightful letter and pretty present of tablets from dear Lady Emily Hardinge.—A letter from the editor of the Athenæum, offering me liberal terms—altogether a pleasant post.

This is Lord Anglesey’s day of entry! What an apotheosis! O’Connell has organised all that is false, bad, and ungrateful in the country against him. All through the town are placards ordering “All who love Ireland to stay at home.” Some of O’Connell’s “two thousand gentlemen” took their stations in different places, and endeavoured to harangue the people against this once idol of the nation; but in spite of this, Lord Anglesey had with him all the intelligence, wealth, rank, and respectability of the country. The cries of “O’Connell for ever!” “Down with dirty Dogherty!” were abundant. Morgan got out of a sick bed to go
and meet him (much to my anxiety and apprehension).
Lord Cloncurry came home with Morgan after the swearing in of the lord-lieutenant, and afterwards dined at the state dinner at the castle. Amongst some of the odd and pleasant things Lord Cloncurry told us, was, that Billy Murphy wrote to him to say that O’Connell would call on him at Maritimo on Tuesday last, to offer him all the trades to walk in procession, to meet Lord Anglesea on his entry. Lord Cloncurry waited at home all day, but the “Liberator” never came—en attendant, he had changed his mind, and absolved the people from all gratitude to their true friend. Ireland seems now organised for revolution. The government has not one periodical organ,—O’Connell’s party has all, save the Orange papers, who are equally factious. It is very disheartening. Meantime, parliament at this most critical moment is prorogued.

The “letters” alluded to in the ensuing note from Lord Anglesey, were in all probability contributions from Sir Charles or Lady Morgan herself, to some liberal journal. Contributions of common sense, and a little tranquil stupidity, administered with discretion, were, doubtless, the best possible remedies for the restless cleverness of the Irish character. There is a great virtue in stupidity, it gives cohesion, and is a necessary quality before cleverness can attain the breadth and solidity of wisdom.

Marquis of Anglesea to Lady Morgan.
Uxbridge House,
December 3rd, 1830.
Dear Lady Morgan,

I have been favoured by the receipt of your obliging letter of the 28th of November, and have also received the letters you were so kind as to send. These had already attracted my notice, and very able productions they are. The subject is admirably handled, and cannot fail to do infinite good.

Oh, that Ireland would try the effect of a little quiet! From mere curiosity she should try it. Granted, that bustle and agitation are very charming, but toujours, toujours perdrix! is too much. Do let us be very still and stupid, I am fit for that state of things, and for that only, for I am a sad sufferer, and nothing but the restless desire I have to contribute my mite to help you all, could have induced me to quit my arm-chair. You must all compassionate me, and be very good.

Believe me,
Dear Lady Morgan,
Very truly yours,

The following letter from Thomas Moore to Lady Morgan, is about literary matters. Incidental mention of an offer he had once had “to conduct the Times.”

Thomas Moore to Lady Morgan.
Sloperton Cottage,
December 22nd, 1830.
My dear Lady Morgan,

As you seemed to think it better that I should commune direct with the publisher, and I had a prospect of being shortly in town, when I could deliver my answer in person, I deferred writing to either you or them till that opportunity should occur. I have now seen your messengers, at least, one of them; a very grave, respectable bibliopolist as I should wish to meet with, and have given him my answer (as I feared all along I should) in the negative. I was glad, however, to see that he had not much set his heart upon the plan, and I shall hope that neither have you been very desirous of it, as I hate to refuse anything that any body (how much, therefore, such a luminous lady as yourself) wishes me to do. The fact is, it would not be worth a publisher’s while to give me such a sum as alone would make it worth my while to put myself so much out of my way. I was once offered at the rate of one hundred pounds a month to conduct the Times for a certain period, and at another time had a proposal from Croker to edit the Quarterly Review, at a thousand pounds a year, but neither tempted me. Talking of the Times, I have no conception of who was the author of that malignant attack upon you, but meant to have asked the editor, had I seen him when I was in town. That great machine and I have long parted company;
their politics under the
Duke of Wellington (as I took care to tell them), being everything that I most detested. I shall be always glad, however, when they are in the ways of orthodoxy (as they seem to be just now), to put a helping hand to the lever, for such it is of the most massive kind.

Mrs. Moore begs to be most kindly remembered to you and Sir Charles, who is, I trust, by this time, quite himself again.

Ever yours, most truly,
Thomas Moore.

PS.—People express a little alarm about my Life and Death of Lord Edward, and I get hints from all sides that it would be prudent to defer its publishing; but I shall not mind them.

Christmas-day.—My birth-day—à quoi bon?—still I have great cause to be thankful whilst all I love live. What a cordial greeting from the Clarkes; how soothing! how cheering! what a beautiful aspect of life! Love and the arts—I found them all round the round table; the blackest frost without; all warm and sunshine within. Flaxman’s illustrations of Dante on the table, Morgan strumming Rossini at the piano, Josephine with her pencil, sketching the group, &c., &c. Alas! how long will this last? We returned home better in health, feelings, and spirits, forgot O’Connell and the Irish Rebellion, the calumnies of authors, the envy of critics, and soon the whole world, in the calm, deep sleep of temperance and kindly feelings.