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OF THE

CO N V ERSATIONS

OF

LORD BYRON:

NOTED DURING A RESIDENCE WITH HIS LORDSHIP

AT PISA,

IN THE YEARS 1821 AND 1822.

BY THOMAS MEDWIN, ESQ.

OF THE 24TH LIGHT DRAGOONS,

AUTHOR OF " AHASUERUS THE WANDERER."

LONDON:

PRINTED FOR HENRY COLBURN, NEW BURLINGTON STREET. .

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“A great poet belongs to no country; bis works are public property, and his Memoirs the inheritance of the public.” Such were the sentiments of Lord Byron; and have they been attended to ? Has not a manifest injustice been done to the world, and an injury to his memory, by the destruction of his Memoirs ? These are questions which it is now late, perhaps needless, to ask; but I will endeavour to lessen, if not to remedy, the evil.

I am aware that in publishing these reminiscences I shall have to contend with much

obloquy from some parts of his family,—that I shall incur the animosity of many of his friends. There are authors, too, who will not be pleased to find their names in print,—to hear his real opinion of themselves, or of their works. There are others—But I have the satisfaction of feeling that I have set about executing the task I have undertaken, conscientiously: I mean neither to throw a veil over his errors, nor a gloss over his virtues.

My sketch will be an imperfect and a rough one, it is true, but it will be from the life; and slight as it is, may prove more valuable, perhaps, than a finished drawing from memory. It will be any thing but a panegyric: my aim is to paint him as he was. That his passions were violent and impetuous, cannot be denied ; but his feelings and affections were equally strong. Both demanded continual employment; and he had an impatience of repose, a “ restlessness of rest,” that

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