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Fear'st thou for him —may I expire
If in this strife I seek thy sire !
No-though by him that poison poured;
No-though again he call me coward !
But tamely shall I meet their steel?
No-as each crest save his may feel !”

1020

XXIV.

One bound he made, and gained the sand :

Already at his feet hath sunk
The foremost of the prying band,

A gasping head, a quivering trunk:
Another falls—but round him close
A swarming circle of his foes;
From right to left his path he cleft,

And almost met the meeting wave:
His boat appears—not five oars' length,
His comrades strain with desperate strength- 1030

Oh! are they yet in time to save ?

His feet the foremost breakers lave;
His band are plunging in the bay,
Their sabres glitter through the spray;
Wet-wild-unwearied to the strand
They struggle—now they touch the land !
They come—'tis but to add to slaughter-
His heart's best blood is on the water.

XXV.

1040

Escaped from shot, unharmed by steel,
Or scarcely grazed its force to feel,
Ilad Selim won, betrayed, beset,
To where the strand and billows met;

i. Or grazed by wounds he scorned to feel.-[ 115,1

There as his last step left the land,
And the last death-blow dealt his hand
Ah! wherefore did he turn to look i.

For her his eye but sought in vain ?
That pause, that fatal gaze he took,

Hath doomed his death, or fixed his chain.
Sad proof, in peril and in pain,
How late will Lover's hope remain !

1050
His back was to the dashing spray;
Behind, but close, his comrades lay,
When, at the instant, hissed the ball-
“So may the foes of Giaffir fall !”
Whose voice is heard? whose carbine rang?
Whose bullet through the night-air sang,
Too nearly, deadly aimed to err ?
'Tis thine-Abdallah's Murderer !

i. Three MS. variants of these lines were rejected in turn before the text was finally adopted

(1) | Ah! wherefore did he turn to look

I know not why he turned to look
Since fatal was the gaze he took ?
So far escaped from death or chain,
To search for her and search in vain :
Sad proof in peril and in pain

How late will Lover's hope remain.
(2) Thus far escaped from death or chain

Ah! wherefore did he turn to look ?
For her his eye must seek in vain,
Since fatal was the gaze he took.

Sad proof, etc. -
(3) Ah! wherefore did he turn to look

So far escaped from death or chain ?
Since fatal was the gaze he took
For her his eye but sought in vain,

Sad proof, etc.—
A fourth variant of lines 1046, 1047 was inserted in a revise dated
November 16-

That glance he paused to send again
To her for whom he dies in vain,

The father slowly rued thy hate,
The son hath found a quicker fate:

1060
Fast from his breast the blood is bubbling,
The whiteness of the sea-foam troubling-
If aught his lips essayed to groan,
The rushing billows choked the tone!

XXVI.

1070

Morn slowly rolls the clouds away;

Few trophies of the fight are there :
The shouts that shook the midnight-bay
Are silent; but some signs of fray

That strand of strife may bear,
And fragments of each shivered brand;
Steps stamped ; and dashed into the sand
The print of many a struggling hand

May there be marked; nor far remote

A broken torch, an oarless boat; And tangled on the weeds that heap The beach where shelving to the deep

There lies a white capote !
'Tis rent in twain-one dark-red stain
The wave yet ripples o'er in vain :

But where is he who wore ?
Ye! who would o'er his relics weep,
Go, seek them where the surges sweep
Their burthen round Sigæum's steep

And cast on Lemnos' shore :
The sea-birds shriek above the prey,
O'er which their hungry beaks delay,
As shaken on his restless pillow,
His head heaves with the heaving billow;

1080

i. O'er which their talons yet delay.-[MS. erased.

1090

That hand, whose motion is not life,
Yet feebly seems to menace strife,
Flung by the tossing tide on high,

Then levelled with the wave-1
What recks it, though that corse shall lie

Within a living grave?
The bird that tears that prostrate form
Hath only robbed the meaner worm;
The only heart, the only eye
Had bled or wept to see him die,
Had seen those scattered limbs composed,

And mourned above his turban-stone,?
That heart hath burst—that eye was closed-

Yea-closed before his own!

ΙΙοο

XXVII.

By Helle's stream there is a voice of wail !
And Woman's eye is wet- Man's cheek is pale :
Zuleika ! last of Giaffir's race,

Thy destined lord is come too late :
He sees not-ne'er shall see thy face !

Can he not hear
The loud Wul-wulleh 3 warn his distant ear?

Thy handmaids weeping at the gate,

IIIO

i. And that changed hand whose only life

Is motion-seems to menace strife.-(MS.] 1. [" While the Salsette lay off the Dardanelles, Lord Byron saw the body of a man who had been executed by being cast into the sea, floating on the stream, moving to and fro with the tumbling of the water, which gave to his arms the effect of scaring away several sea-fowl that were hovering to devour. This incident he has strikingly depicted in the Bride of Abydos.- Life of Lord Byron, by John Galt, 1830, p. 144.) 2. A túrban is carved in stone above the graves of men only.

3. The death-song of the Turkish women. The “silent slaves are the men, whose notions of decorum forbid complaint in public,

The Koran-chanters of the Hymn of Fate, 1

The silent slaves with folded arms that wait,
Sighs in the hall, and shrieks upon the gale,

Tell him thy tale !
Thou didst not view thy Selim fall !
That fearful moment when he left the cave

Thy heart grew chill :
He was thy hope-thy joy—thy love-thine all,
And that last thought on him thou could'st not save
Sufficed to kill;

1120 Burst forth in one wild cry—and all was still.

Peace to thy broken heart-and virgin grave! Ah! happy! but of life to lose the worst ! That grief-though deep-though fatal—was thy first Thrice happy! ne'er to feel nor fear the force Of absence-shame-pride-hate-revenge-remorse! And, oh ! that pang where more than Madness lies The Worm that will not sleep-and never dies; Thought of the gloomy day and ghastly night, That dreads the darkness, and yet loathes the light, 1130 That winds around, and tears the quivering heart! Ah! wherefore not consume it—and depart!

i. The Koran-chapter chaunts thy fate.[1/5.) 1. (At a Turkish funeral, after the interment has taken place, the Imâm “assis sur les genoux à côté de la tombe," offers the prayer Telkin, and at the conclusion of the prayer recites the Fathah, or “opening chapter" of the Korân. ("In the name of the merciful and compassionate God. Praise belongs to God, the Lord of the worlds, the Merciful, the Compassionate, the Ruler of the day of judgment. Thee we serve, and Thee we ask for aid. Guide us in the right path, the path of those Thou art gracious to; not of those

Thou art wroth with ; nor of those who err."-- The Qur'an, p. I, translated by E. H. Palmer, Oxford, 1880): Tableau Générale de l'Empire Ottoman, par Mouradja D'Ohsson, Paris, 1787, i. 235-248. Writing to Murray, November 14, 1813, Byron instances the funeral (in the Bride of Abydos) as proof of his correctness with regard to local colouring - Letters, 1898, ii. 283.)

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