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Woe to thee, rash and unrelenting Chief!
Vainly thou heap'st the dust upon thy head,
By that same hand Abdallah-Selim bled.
1140 Hope of thine age, thy twilight's lonely beam,
The Star hath set that shone on Helle's stream. What quenched its ray ?—the blood that thou hast shed ! Hark! to the hurried question of Despair : ? “Where is my child ?"-an Echo answers—"Where ?" 3
Within the place of thousand tombs
That shine beneath, while dark above
And withers not, though branch and Icaf
Like early unrequited Love,
i. She whom thy Sultan had been fain to wed.-[MS.]
ii. There the sad cypress ever glooms.--[MS.) 1. ["I one evening witnessed a funeral in the vast cemetery of Scutari. An old man, with a venerable beard, threw himself by the side of the narrow grave, and strewing the earth on his head, cried aloud, 'He was my son! my only son !'”_Constantinople in 1828, by Charles Macfarlane, 1829, p. 233, note.]
2. [“ The body of a Moslemin is ordered to be carried to the grave in haste, with hurried steps.”—— Ibid., p. 233, note.)
3. “I came to the place of my birth, and cried, “The friends of my Youth, where are they ?' and an Echo answered, “Where are they?'”-From an Arabic MS. The above quotation (from which the idea in the text is taken) must be already familiar to every reader : it is given in the second annotation, p. 67, of The Pleasures of Memory (note to Part I. line 103]; a poem so well known as to render a reference almost superfluous : but to whose pages all will be delighted to recur [Poems, by Samuel Rogers, 1852, i. 48).
One spot exists, which ever blooms,
Ev'n in that deadly grove-
Its lonely lustre, meek and pale:
So white-so faint--the slightest gale Might whirl the leaves on high;
And yet, though storms and blight assail, And hands more rude than wintry sky 1160
May wring it from the stem-in vain
To-morrow sees it bloom again!
For well may maids of Helle deem
1170 To it the livelong night there sings
A Bird unseen-but not remote:
His long entrancing note !
Though mournful, pours not such a strain :
1180 And yet so sweet the tears they shed, 'Tis sorrow so unmixed with dread, They scarce can bear the morn to break
That melancholy spell,
He sings so wild and well !
Expires that magic melody.
Yet harsh be they that blame,)
Into Zuleika's name.
i. But with the day blush of the sky.-(MS.)
MILTON, Comus, line 208. For a belief that the souls of the dead inhabit the form of birds, we need not travel to the East. Lord Lyttleton's ghost story, the belief of the Duchess of Kendal, that George I. flew into her window in the shape of a raven (see Orford's Reminiscences, Lord Orford's Works, 1798, iv, 283), and many other instances, bring this superstition nearer home. The most singular was the whim of a Wor. cester lady, who, believing her daughter to exist in the shape of a singing bird, literally furnished her pew in the cathedral with cages full of the kind ; and as she was rich, and a benefactress in beautilying the church, no objection was made to her harmless folly. For this anecdote, see Orford's Letters.
(“But here (at Gloucester) is a modernity, which beats all antiquities for curiosity. Just by the high altar is a small pew bung with green damask, with curtains of the same; a small corner-cupboard, painted, carved, and gilt, for books, in one corner, and two troughs of a bird-cage, with seeds and water. If any mayoress on earth was small enough to inclose herself in this tabernacle, or abstemious enough to feed on rape and canary, I should have sworn that it was the shrine of the queen of the aldermen. It belongs to a Mrs. Cotton, who, having lost a favourite daughter, is convinced her soul is transmigrated into a robin redbreast, for which reason she passes her life in making an aviary of the cathedral of Glou. cester.”—Letter to Richard Bentley, September, 1753 (Lord Orford's Works, 1798, v. 279).]
P VOL. III,
There late was laid a marble stone;
And hence extended by the billow,
Hath flourished; flourisheth this hour,
i. And in its stead that mourning flower
Hath flourished-flourisheth this hour,
Are stamped with an eternal grief.-[MS.)
As weeping Childhood's cheek at Sorrow's tale! 1. (According to J. B. Le Chevalier (Voyage de La Propontide, etc., an. viii. (1800), p. 17), the Turkish name for a small bay which formed the ancient port of Sestos, is Ak-Bachi-Liman (Port de la Tête blanche). ]
2. (“ The Bride, such as it is, is my first entire composition of any length (except the Satire, and be damned to it), for The Giaour is but a string of passages, and Childe Harold is, and I rather think always will be, unconcluded” (Letter to Murray, November 29, 1813). It (the Bride) “was published on Thursday the second of December ; but how it is liked or disliked, I know not. Whether it succeeds or not is no fault of the public, against whom I can have no complaint. But I am much more indebted to the tale than I can ever be to the most partial reader; as it wrung my thoughts from reality to imagination—from selfish regrets to vivid recollections-and recalled me to a country replete with the brightest and darkest, but always most lively colours of my memory” (Fournal, December 5, 1813, Letters, 1898, ii. 291, 361).]
NOTE TO THE BRIDE OF ABYDOS.
CANTO II. STANZA XX.
AFTER the completion of the fair copy of the MS. of the Bride of Abydos, seventy lines were added to stanza xx. of Canto II. In both MSS. the rough and fair copies, the stanza ends with the line, “ The Dove of peace and promise to mine ark !”
Seven MS. sheets are extant, which make up the greater portion of these additional lines.
The First Addition amounts to eight lines, and takes the narrative from line 880 to line 893, “Wait-wave-defend-destroy-at thy command !”
Lines 884-889 do not appear in the first MS. Fragment, but are given in three variants on separate sheets. Two of these are dated December 2 and December 3, 1813.
The Second Fragment begins with line 890, “For thee in those bright isles is built a bower," and, numbering twentytwo lines, ends with a variant of line 907, “Blend every thought, do all—but disunite !” Two lines of this addition, "With thee all toils are sweet,” find a place in the text as lines 934, 935.
The Third Fragment amounts to thirty-six lines, and may be taken as the first draft of the whole additions-lines 880-949.
Lines 908-925 and 936-945 of the text are still "later additions, but a fourth MS. fragment supplies lines 920-925 and lines 936-945. (A fair copy of this fragment gives text for Revise of November 13.) Between November 13 and November 25 no less than ten revises of the Bride were