LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Letters and Journals of Lord Byron
Lord Byron to Thomas Moore, 19 January 1815

Life of Byron: to 1806
Life of Byron: 1806
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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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“January 19th, 1815.

“Egad! I don’t think he is ‘down;’ and my prophecy—like most auguries, sacred and profane—is not annulled, but inverted. * * *

* * * * * *

“To your question about the ‘dog*’—Umph!—my ‘mother,’ I won’t say any thing against—that is, about her; but how long a ‘mistress’ or friend may recollect paramours or competitors (lust and thirst being the two great and only bonds between the amatory or the amicable), I can’t say,—or, rather, you know as well as I could tell you. But as for canine recollections, as far as I could judge by a cur of mine own (always bating Boatswain, the dearest and, alas! the maddest of dogs), I had one (half a wolf by the she side) that doted on me at ten years old, and very nearly ate me at twenty. When I thought he was going to enact Argus, he bit away the backside of my breeches, and never would consent to any kind of recognition, in despite of all kinds of bones which I offered him. So, let Southey blush and Homer too, as far as I can decide upon quadruped memories.

“I humbly take it, the mother knows the son that pays her jointure—a mistress her mate, till he * * and refuses salary—a friend his fellow, till he loses cash and character, and a dog his master, till he changes him.

“So, you want to know about milady and me? But let me not, as Roderick Random says, ‘profane the chaste mysteries of Hymen†’—

* I had just been reading Mr. Southey’s fine Poem of “Roderick,” and with reference to an incident in it, had put the following question to Lord Byron—“I should like to know from you, who are one of the Philocynic sect, whether it is at all probable, that any dog (out of a melodrame) could recognise a master, whom neither his own mother or mistress was able to find out. I don’t care about Ulysses’s dog, &c.—all I want is to know from you (who are renown’d as ‘friend of the dog, companion of the bear,’) whether such a thing is probable.”

† The letter H. is blotted in the MS.

A. D. 1815. LIFE OF LORD BYRON. 603
damn the word, I had nearly spelt it with a small h. I like
Bell as well as you do (or did, you villain!) Bessy—and that is (or was) saying a great deal.

“Address your next to Seaham, Stockton-on-Tees, where we are going on Saturday (a bore, by the way) to see father-in-law, Sir Jacob, and my lady’s lady-mother. Write—and write more at length—both to the public and

“Yours ever most affectionately,