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Page:The Works of Lord Byron (ed. Coleridge, Prothero) - Volume 1.djvu/274

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234
HOURS OF IDLENESS.

Not though a thousand more adorn
The polished brow where once you shone,
Like rays which gild a cloudless sky[1]
Beneath Columbia's fervid zone.

1806.


STANZAS TO JESSY.[2]

1.

There is a mystic thread of life
So dearly wreath'd with mine alone,
That Destiny's relentless knife
At once must sever both, or none.


  1. —— a cloudless morn.—[Ed. 1832.]
  2. ["Stanzas to Jessy" have often been printed, but were never acknowledged by Byron, or included in any authorized edition of his works. They are, however, unquestionably genuine. They appeared first in Monthly Literary Recreations (July, 1807), a magazine published by B. Crosby & Co., Stationers' Court. Crosby was London agent for Ridge, the Newark bookseller, and, with Longman and others, "sold" the recently issued Hours of Idleness. The same number of Monthly Literary Recreations (for July, 1807) contains Byron's review of Wordsworth's Poems (2 vols., 1807), and a highly laudatory notice of Hours of Idleness. The lines are headed "Stanzas to Jessy," and are signed "George Gordon, Lord Byron." They were republished in 1824, by Knight and Lacy, in vol. v. of the three supplementary volumes of the Works, and again in the same year by John Bumpus and A. Griffin, in their Miscellaneous Poems, etc. A note which is prefixed to these issues, "The following stanzas were addressed by Lord Byron to his Lady, a few months before their separation," and three variants in the text, make it unlikely that the pirating editors were acquainted with the text of the magazine. The MS.