LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Letters and Journals of Lord Byron
Lord Byron to Francis Hodgson, 8 December 1811

Life of Byron: to 1806
Life of Byron: 1806
Life of Byron: 1807
Life of Byron: 1808
Life of Byron: 1809
Life of Byron: 1810
Life of Byron: 1811
Life of Byron: 1812
Life of Byron: 1813
Life of Byron: 1814
Life of Byron: 1815
Life of Byron: 1816 (I)
Life of Byron: 1816 (II)
Life of Byron: 1817
Life of Byron: 1818
Life of Byron: 1819
Life of Byron: 1820
Life of Byron: 1821
Life of Byron: 1822
Life of Byron: 1823
Life of Byron: 1824
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“London, Dec. 8th, 1811.

“I sent you a sad Tale of Three Friars the other day, and now take a dose in another style. I wrote it a day or two ago, on hearing a song of former days.
“Away, away, ye notes of woe*, &c. &c.

“I have gotten a book by Sir W. Drummond (printed, but not published), entitled Œdipus Judaicus, in which he attempts to prove the greater part of the Old Testament an allegory, particularly Genesis and Joshua. He professes himself a theist in the preface, and handles the literal interpretation very roughly. I wish you could see it. Mr. W * * has lent it me, and I confess, to me, it is worth fifty Watsons.

“You and Harness must fix on the time for your visit to Newstead; I can command mine at your wish, unless any thing particular occurs in the interim. * * * Bland dines with me on Tuesday to meet Moore. Coleridge has attacked the ‘Pleasures of Hope,’ and all other pleasures whatsoever. SaRoger1855 was present, and heard himself indirectly rowed by the lecturer. We are going in a party to hear the new Art of Poetry by this reformed schismatic; and were I one of these

* This poem is now printed in Lord Byron’s Works.

A. D. 1811. LIFE OF LORD BYRON. 319
poetical luminaries, or of sufficient consequence to be noticed by the man of lectures, I should not hear him without an answer. For, you know, ‘an’ a man will be beaten with brains, he shall never keep a clean doublet.’
C * * will be desperately annoyed. I never saw a man (and of him I have seen very little) so sensitive;—what a happy temperament! I am sorry for it; what can he fear from criticism? I don’t know if Bland has seen Miller, who was to call on him yesterday.

“To-day is the Sabbath,—a day I never pass pleasantly, but at Cambridge; and, even there, the organ is a sad remembrancer. Things are stagnant enough in town,—as long as they don’t retrograde, ’tis all very well. H * * writes and writes and writes, and is an author. I do nothing but eschew tobacco. I wish parliament were assembled, that I may hear, and perhaps some day be heard;—but on this point I am not very sanguine. I have many plans;—sometimes I think of the East again, and dearly beloved Greece. I am well, but weakly. Yesterday Kinnaird told me I looked very ill, and sent me home happy.

“You will never give up wine;—see what it is to be thirty; if you were six years younger, you might leave off any thing. You drink and repent, you repent and drink. Is Scrope still interesting and invalid? And how does Hinde with his cursed chemistry? To Harness I have written, and he has written, and we have all written, and have nothing now to do but write again, till death splits up the pen and the scribbler.

“The Alfred has 354 candidates for six vacancies. The cook has run away and left us liable, which makes our committee very plaintive. Master Brook, our head serving-man, has the gout, and our new cook is none of the best. I speak from report,—for what is cookery to a leguminous-eating ascetic? So now you know as much of the matter as I do. Books and quiet are still there, and they may dress their dishes in their own way for me. Let me know your determination as to Newstead, and believe me,

“Yours ever,