LORD  BYRON  and  his  TIMES
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Letters and Journals of Lord Byron
Lord Byron to Sir John Bowring, 29 November 1823

Life of Byron: to 1806
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Life of Byron: 1811
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Life of Byron: 1814
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Life of Byron: 1816 (I)
Life of Byron: 1816 (II)
Life of Byron: 1817
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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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“9bre 29th, 1823.

“This letter will be presented to you by Mr. Hamilton Browne, who precedes or accompanies the Greek deputies. He is both capable and desirous of rendering any service to the cause, and information to the Committee. He has already been of considerable advantage to both, of my own knowledge. Lord Archibald Hamilton, to whom he is related, will add a weightier recommendation than mine.

“Corinth is taken, and a Turkish squadron said to be beaten in the Archipelago. The public progress of the Greeks is considerable, but their internal dissensions still continue. On arriving at the seat of Government, I shall endeavour to mitigate or extinguish them—though neither is an easy task. I have remained here till now, partly in expectation of the squadron in relief of Missolonghi, partly of Mr. Parry’s detachment, and partly to receive from Malta or Zante the sum of four thousand pounds sterling, which I have advanced for the payment of the expected squadron. The bills are negotiating, and will be cashed in a short time, as they would have been immediately in any other mart; but the miserable Ionian merchants have little money, and no great credit, and are, besides, politically shy on this occasion; for, although I had letters of Messrs. Webb (one of the strongest houses of the Mediterranean), and also of Messrs. Ransom, there is no business to be done on fair terms except through English merchants. These, however, have proved both able and willing,—and upright, as usual*.

* The English merchants whom he thus so justly describes are Messrs. Barff and Hancock, of Zante, whose conduct, not only in the instance of Lord Byron, but throughout the whole Greek struggle, has been uniformly most zealous and disinterested.

A. D. 1823. LIFE OF LORD BYRON. 689

Colonel Stanhope has arrived, and will proceed immediately; he shall have my co-operation in all his endeavours; but from every thing that I can learn, the formation of a brigade at present will be extremely difficult, to say the least of it. With regard to the reception of foreigners,—at least of foreign officers,—I refer you to a passage in Prince Mavrocordato’s recent letter, a copy of which is enclosed in my packet sent to the Deputies. It is my intention to proceed by sea to Napoli di Romania as soon as I have arranged this business for the Greeks themselves—I mean the advance of two hundred thousand piastres for their fleet.

“My time here has not been entirely lost,—as you will perceive by some former documents that any advantage from my then proceeding to the Morea was doubtful. We have at last moved the Deputies, and I have made a strong remonstrance on their divisions to Mavrocordato, which, I understand, was forwarded by the Legislative to the Prince. With a loan they may do much, which is all that I, for particular reasons, can say on the subject.

“I regret to hear from Colonel Stanhope that the Committee have exhausted their funds. Is it supposed that a brigade can be formed without them? or that three thousand pounds would be sufficient? It is true that money will go farther in Greece than in most countries; but the regular force must be rendered a national concern, and paid from a national fund; and neither individuals nor committees, at least with the usual means of such as now exist, will find the experiment practicable.

“I beg once more to recommend my friend, Mr. Hamilton Browne, to whom I have also personal obligations for his exertions in the common cause, and have the honour to be

“Yours very truly.”