LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Letters and Journals of Lord Byron
Lord Byron to John Murray, 23 April 1818

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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“April 23d, 1818.

“The time is past in which I could feel for the dead,—or I should feel for the death of Lady Melbourne, the best, and kindest, and ablest female I ever knew, old or young. But ‘I have supped full of horrors,’ and events of this kind have only a kind of numbness worse than pain,—like a violent blow on the elbow or the head. There is one link less between England and myself.

“Now to business. I presented you with Beppo, as part of the contract for Canto Fourth,—considering the price you are to pay for the same, and intending to eke you out in case of public caprice or my own poetical failure. If you choose to suppress it entirely, at Mr. * * * *’s suggestion, you may do as you please. But recollect it is not to be published in a garbled or mutilated state. I reserve to my friends and myself the right of correcting the press;—if the publication continue, it is to continue in its present form.

* * * * * *

As Mr. * * says that he did not write this letter, &c., I am ready to believe him; but for the firmness of my former persuasion, I refer to Mr. * * * *, who can inform you how sincerely I erred on this point. He has also the note—or, at least, had it, for I gave it to him with my verbal comments thereupon. As to ‘Beppo,’ I will not alter or suppress a syllable for any man’s pleasure but my own.

“You may tell them this; and add, that nothing but force or necessity shall stir me one step towards the places to which they would wring me.

* * * * * *

If your literary matters prosper, let me know. If ‘Beppo’ pleases, you shall have more in a year or two in the same mood. And so, ‘Good morrow to you good Master Lieutenant.’

“Yours, &c.”