LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Letters and Journals of Lord Byron
Lord Byron to Thomas Moore, 12 June 1815

Life of Byron: to 1806
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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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“13, Piccadilly Terrace, June 12th, 1815.

“I have nothing to offer in behalf of my late silence, except the most inveterate and ineffable laziness; but I am too supine to invent a lie, or I certainly should, being ashamed of the truth. K * *, I hope, has appeased your magnanimous indignation at his blunders. I wished and wish you were in the Committee, with all my heart†. It seems so hopeless a business, that the company of a friend would be quite consoling,—but more of this when we meet. In the mean time, you are entreated to prevail upon Mrs. Esterre to engage herself. I believe she has been written to, but your influence, in person, or proxy, would probably go farther than our proposals. What they are, I know not; all my new function consists in listening to the despair of Cavendish Bradshaw, the hopes of Kinnaird, the wishes of Lord Essex, the complaints of Whitbread, and the calculations of Peter Moore,—all of which, and whom, seem totally at variance. C. Bradshaw wants to light the theatre with gas, which may, perhaps (if the vulgar be believed) poison half the audience, and all the Dramatis Personæ. Essex has endeavoured to persuade K * * not to get drunk, the consequence of which is, that he has never been sober since. Kinnaird, with equal success, would have convinced Raymond that he, the said Raymond, had too much salary. Whitbread wants us to assess the pit another sixpence,—a d—d insidious

* This and the following letter were addressed to me in Ireland, whither I had gone about the middle of the preceding month.

† He had lately become one of the members of the Sub-Committee (consisting, besides himself, of the persons mentioned in this letter), who had taken upon themselves the management of Drury-lane Theatre; and it had been his wish, on the first construction of the Committee, that I should be one of his colleagues. To some mistake in the mode of conveying this proposal to me, he alludes in the preceding sentence.

622 NOTICES OF THE A. D. 1815.
proposition,—which will end in an O. P. combustion. To crown all,
R * *, the auctioneer, has the impudence to be displeased, because he has no dividend. The villain is a proprietor of shares, and a long-lunged orator in the meetings. I hear he has prophesied our incapacity,—‘a foregone conclusion,’ whereof I hope to give him signal proofs before we are done.

“Will you give us an Opera? no, I’ll be sworn, but I wish you would. * * * * * * * * * * * * *

“To go on with the poetical world, Walter Scott has gone back to Scotland. Murray, the bookseller, has been cruelly cudgelled of misbegotten knaves, ‘in Kendal green,’ at Newington Butts, in his way home from a purlieu dinner—and robbed,—would you believe it?—of three or four bonds of forty pound apiece, and a seal-ring of his grandfather’s, worth a million! This is his version,—but others opine that D’Israeli, with whom he dined, knocked him down with his last publication, ‘the Quarrels of Authors,’ in a dispute about copyright. Be that as it may, the newspapers have teemed with his ‘injuria formæ,’ and he has been embrocated and invisible to all but the apothecary ever since.

Lady B. is better than three months advanced in her progress towards maternity, and, we hope, likely to go well through with it. We have been very little out this season, as I wish to keep her quiet in her present situation. Her father and mother have changed their names to Noel, in compliance with Lord Wentworth’s will, and in complaisance to the property bequeathed by him.

“I hear that you have been gloriously received by the Irish,—and so you ought. But don’t let them kill you with claret and kindness at the national dinner in your honour, which, I hear and hope, is in contemplation. If you will tell me the day, I’ll get drunk myself on this side of the water, and waft you an applauding hiccup over the Channel.

“Of politics, we have nothing but the yell for war; and C * * h is preparing his head for the pike, on which we shall see it carried before he has done. The loan has made every body sulky. I hear often from Paris, but in direct contradiction to the home statements of our hire-
A. D. 1815. LIFE OF LORD BYRON. 623
lings. Of domestic doings, there has been nothing since Lady D * *. Not a divorce stirring,—but a good many in embryo, in the shape of marriages.

“I enclose you an epistle received this morning from I know not whom; but I think it will amuse you. The writer must be a rare fellow*.

“P.S. A gentleman named D’Alton (not your Dalton) has sent me a National Poem called ‘Dermid.’ The same cause which prevented my writing to you operated against my wish to write to him an epistle of thanks. If you see him, will you make all kinds of fine speeches for me, and tell him that I am the laziest and most ungrateful of mortals?

“A word more;—don’t let Sir John Stevenson (as an evidence on trials for copyright, &c.) talk about the price of your next Poem, or they will come upon you for the Property Tax for it. I am serious, and have just heard a long story of the rascally tax-men making Scott pay for his. So, take care. Three hundred is a devil of a deduction out of three thousand.”