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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/243

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203
TO THE EARL OF CLARE.

And though myself may be the next
By critic sarcasm to be vext,
I really will not fight them.[1]


11.

Perhaps they would do quite as well
To break the rudely sounding shell
Of such a young beginner:
He who offends at pert nineteen,
Ere thirty may become, I ween,
A very harden'd sinner.


12.

Now, Clare, I must return to you;[2]
And, sure, apologies are due:
Accept, then, my concession.
In truth, dear Clare, in Fancy's flight[3]
I soar along from left to right;
My Muse admires digression.


13.

I think I said 'twould be your fate
To add one star to royal state;—

May regal smiles attend you!
  1. A bard [Moore] (Horresco referens) defied his reviewer [Jeffrey] to mortal combat. If this example becomes prevalent, our Periodical Censors must be dipped in the river Styx: for what else can secure them from the numerous host of their enraged assailants? [Cf. English Bards, l. 466, note.]
  2. Now —— I must.—[Poems O. and T.]
  3. In truth dear —— in fancy's flight.—[Poems O. and T.]